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Kisses, Not Hisses

As I finish this chapter, I am reminded of a Special Olympics event held in Seattle, Washington, a few years back. I especially remember the 100-yard dash, where nine mentally and physically challenged children competed against each other.

With great anticipation the runners lined up and waited for the gun. They were smiling and full of energy, hoping to win but thrilled just to compete.

The starting gun fired and all nine kids ran down the track as fast as they could. Suddenly one of the boys stumbled and rolled over. A gasp spread through the stands. Then, with no prompting, a little girl with Down’s syndrome stopped, turned around, and went to the fallen boy. She knelt beside him and said, “Here, this will make it feel all better.” Then she kissed him on the cheek.

One by one, the other special runners stopped and returned to the spot where the boy lay crumpled. They reached down and helped him up. Then, arm in arm, all nine of those wonderful kids went toward the finish together. They all crossed the line at the same time, so that all nine could win.

Rivers of tears flowed down the faces of the onlookers, who stood to their feet to applaud grace delivered when least expected.

Friend, we are all strugglers together, stumbling toward the finish line. We need each other. We need outstretched arms and kisses, not pointing fingers and hisses. It really is the only way to victory.

Excerpted From More Jesus, Less Religion by Stephen Arterburn and Jack Felton

Daily Reflection: How can you reach out to those who may be stumbling around you?

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