February 1, 2015
Mark 1:21-28
1 Corinthians 8:1-13
Deuteronomy 18:15-20
Psalm 111

The Other Cheek

from the book
Story Time At The Altar
86 Messages For Children

Elaine M. Ward

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There once was a boy who was always fighting. If someone accidently touched him, he hit them with his fist. If someone called him a funny name, he kicked them. If someone laughed at him, he beat up on them. After a while the others learned to fight back, and the boy came home lonely, with bruises and bad feelings.

One day someone asked, ducking his blow, "Why do you want to fight?"

"To show I am stronger than anyone else!" The boy clenched his fists.

"Does that make you feel good?" asked the other, as he ran.

The boy asked himself, "Does fighting make me feel good? Of course, winning is good. But winning is lonely."

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The next time a child made a face at him, he began to beat up on him and the voice said, "Turn the other cheek." The boy turned his head the other way and continued hitting the other.

"No, silly, I mean if someone hits you on one cheek, turn the other, so he can hit that one, too."

The boy was so surprised by such a silly suggestion, he stopped fighting long enough to laugh. The more he thought about it, the harder he laughed. He laughed so loud the others heard him and began to laugh. Soon everyone was laughing, and it felt so good to be laughing together that the boy laughed even longer.

"This is better than fighting!" he thought. Since that day, whenever anyone calls him a funny name, he laughs, remembering the silly, but wise advice someone gave him long ago.

Talk together: Do you like to fight? Who said "Turn the other cheek. Forgive"?

Prayer: Dear God, help me remember Jesus' words when I am angry. Remind me to count to ten or laugh and "turn the other cheek." Amen.