What do we do when we find ourselves in situations we know make God angry or sad?
When my younger son was in Kindergarten, his teacher approached me one day with a very stern look on her face as I was picking him up from school. I waited to hear what he had done wrong (that day, again!) and she showed me his art project for the story they had heard that day. Well, the story was “The Gingerbread Man” and you probably remember the refrain from it that we all loved to shout when we were little people: “Run, run, run as fast as you can—you can’t catch me, I’m the Gingerbread Man!”
Well, it being Kindergarten after all, the students had been given instructions to draw the Gingerbread Man. My son’s drawing, however, was not quite like the other ones. His character had sharp things protruding from the “hands” of his gingerbread man, and what looked like a bandanna over his face with eye holes cut out.
I asked him to tell me about his picture, and he said with obvious pride, “That’s the NINJA bread Man!” Well, his dad and I about dissolved on the floor with laughter, but his teacher was NOT amused. We tried to explain to her what a clever play on words that was, but she was not buying it. So we saved our mirth for when we got home, and told our son what an interesting picture it was.
Our kiddo had not followed very specific instructions in class that day. This is a humorous and light-hearted example of his days in Kindergarten, but the path was set—this teacher and Michael were not meant for each other. He absolutely could not please this teacher, and by Christmas we removed him from that school.
The passage we will visit this morning is written to people who felt the same way as our son—they wanted to behave, but they could not. They wanted to QUIT misbehaving and could not.