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