No one should ever get bullied, but it happens too often. Kids’ insecurities, upbringing, and social pressures often lead them to single out one or two people who are different and treat them more harshly than the rest of their peers.
Jesus loved the outcasts, and when we see examples of similar care for the underdog, we cheer. Well, here is a great example.
A nine-year-old boy hurried to catch his bus one morning but did not make it. As it drove off, his downcast face said it all. Unknown to little Thomas Daniel, a Grand Rapids police officer named Austin Lynema saw the whole thing. Officer Lynema asked if Thomas needed help and the young boy said his mother did not have a car to get him to school.
The officer got permission from the boy’s mother to take him to school and off they went. While on the way Thomas told Lynema that this day was his ninth birthday, and invited the officer to his party, which would take place after school.
Thomas shared how he hoped his classmates would come, but since he got bullied at school, he was not sure how things might turn out. Sadly, when Officer Lynema showed up to the party later that day, he was the only one besides family to attend. On top of all the heartbreaking disappointments, there wasn’t even a birthday cake.
The next day Officer Lynema surprised the young boy as he got off the school bus in the afternoon with a cake, a singing quartet, and some good – old-fashioned friendship.
That is what loving your neighbor as yourself looks like in the flesh. Way to go Officer Lynema and belated happy birthday young man!