(13) The bad boys who swapped the shoes.
As I have mentioned before; my wife and I are now married for five decades and some six years. Our firstborn child is a daughter. When she went to high-school they had some bad boys there at the school, and two times they had an incident. The first happened something like this: a few boys found a building, to which they had entrance, and from which they could see the entrance to the town mosque. On a Friday when they did not have school they went into this building shortly before lunchtime and observed the mosque from there. Once they were quite sure that all the people were inside and had left all their shoes next to the entrance they carefully went closer till they reached there. Whenever a car passed they looked in the opposite direction, at the same time also observing carefully that nobody was watching them. The mosque was in a quiet area and for them it all worked out; the doors of the nearby businesses’ were all closed and locked. They then took one of almost all the pairs of the shoes and swapped it with a similar shoe in another pair so that the pairs ended up all having two left hand or two right hand shoes. The same careful strategy they had used to get there they again applied to get back to their hiding place. From there they watched the consternation that followed when the prayers’ came out and tried to put on their shoes.
It is hard to imagine that all those affected people found this to be a joke.
To complicate matters further; in the same town, and not too far separated in dates, there were also bad boys who went to their homes by school bus. Our daughter was in such a school-bus which picked up scholars over a distance of about 40 km. (Her journey was even further; those were taken to the bus by car). Then a day arrived on which the bus was able to leave rather early on the homeward trip which happened to pass near the mosque just at the time when the prayers’ were coming out. The bad boys stuck their heads out of open windows and shouted the name of the prayers’ prophet, out aloud, followed by “eats pork”.
This time the reaction was far more than just consternation; and the bus got quite a few angry runners-after; nearly catching up with it. The good guys on the bus sweated in anticipation of what the outcome could or would be; but the bus which was past the robot (traffic lights) picked up speed and began gaining on the angry runners. It was probably end-of-term therefore the school bus was early that day. During the vacation that followed; time and the wind covered the anger of those runners-after.
Let’s be wise and learn from that: To live for and to serve the living God we need to know God; who is love. He loves the sinner but hates the sin. Even our lives should and need to be so; that sinners (angry people) feel uncomfortable and are coaxed into either; confessing and forsaking their sin; or to hating and persecuting us. The God of all gods is also well able to defend His own name. We need to live the Word found in James 1:20 in the Bible; that human anger does not please Him; we can, and should, leave anger over to God. Revenge belongs to God.
Shall we now prepare ourselves for what happened to the young Bible student, at the School; and how God thereafter dealt with him; all for the best.