Tuesday, February 26, 2013

God and Bigfoot

Once upon a time, there was a sixth grade student who approached his teacher to make a statement and ask a question:

"I don't believe in God. Do you hold that against me?"

The teacher smiled and said, "No, of course, I don't. It's OK with me if you don't believe in God."

The boy seemed puzzled. "Don't you believe in God?" he asked, "I mean, you've never said that you do,...but I think you do."  

"Yes," she said, "you're right, I do."

Still a bit confused, he decided to clarify his original question, "And you'll like me anyway,...even if I don't believe?"

The teacher looked the boy in the eyes and didn't hesitate to answer, "Absolutely."

The student's curiosity continued to get the best of him. He valued his teacher's opinion and was still worried about what she thought of him. "Well, what do you think about the fact that I don't believe in God?" he asked.

The teacher knew her student quite well, and they had already had numerous conversations about a variety of things. In fact, he was fond of telling her everything he knew about dinosaurs and sharing pictures he drew of them.

She decided to take a different approach to put his mind at ease. "Correct me if I'm wrong," she said, "but...don't you believe in Bigfoot?"

He smiled shyly,"Yes, you know I do."

"Well, I don't believe in Bigfoot," she declared (a fact he already knew from their previous conversations). "Do you hold that against me?" she asked.

He took her question to heart and shook his head, "Oh, no, of course not." He began to understand.

"Can I tell you something else? You've only been living and breathing on this planet for eleven short years. You will have many experiences in your life as you grow up, and you will learn a lot. Your opinions and beliefs about many things may change from now until the time you become a man. You'll figure it all out for yourself. I trust you. You're a smart boy," the teacher assured him.

This time she was rewarded with a big, genuine smile from her student. He relaxed his shoulders and nodded. She knew he understood and believed her now. She smiled back at his sweet face, patted him on the arm, and sent him on to his next class.

As she watched him walk away, she couldn't help but wonder why he felt that someone who believed in God wouldn't accept him or like him. She thought the first person to accept and love someone should be a person who believes in Him. 


  1. You almost had me in tears with that one.

    1. Oh, Laura, if I could write a book about all the conversations I've had with students...it would make you cry, make you laugh, break your heart, and give you hope. Children are amazing, even on their worst day. And...even on MY worst day, I have the best job in the world! :)