The gospel of Andy...
I'm part of a ministry that reaches out to at-risk kids in our local elementary school called "Kids Hope USA". My boy's name is Andy and he just turned 10 this week. I love hanging out with him and getting him to laugh (rather, him getting me to laugh!)
We were hanging out yesterday playing a little UNO and he was saying, "Oh, my god!" over and over again. Now we're not supposed to bring up conversation about God unless they initiate it, so I've been waiting for an in-route. After about the 4oth time he spouted off that little phrase, I said, "Man, you must know alot about God because you talk about him all the time!" He looked at me without hesitating and said, "Oh, I do!"
"Is that so?" I said with a wee bit of surprise. I know his background and God is not a part of it whatsoever. He continued on. "Yeah, God sent down his Son to the earth to help people switch their lives around. (I love the word switch) He died on the cross so that the blood that came out of him would take people's sin away. And then he got buried under a rock. (priceless) But he climbed out from under the rock after three days and went back to be with his Dad." It was one of the most simple and beautiful descriptions of the gospel I think I had ever heard.
I asked him where he heard that story and he told me that he was watching something during the Christmas season on T.V. that was talking about the song, "Drummer Boy". They must have shared this in the context of that story. I asked him how many times he watched the show and he said one time. He remembered all that stuff after watching the show one time. I thought that was astounding. His brain is like a steel trap! It's funny...he struggles with school, but he's got one of the brightest minds of any 10 yr. old I've ever met. Almost photographic memory-like.
Once a week for one hour during the school day I hang out with Andy. He doesn't know this yet, but I need him as much as he needs me. We're getting to be pretty good friends. He kicks my butt in UNO. We eat Skittles together. I help him with his Spelling. We talk about his family, his dreams, his friends, his trailer park, his father that he hasn't seen for 8 years, his video games, his favorite music, his struggle with anger, his love of dogs and his best memories.
At the end of one of our times together he asked me, "When you come here, am I the only one you come to see?" I replied, "You're it, buddy. You're the only one I come here to see and I wouldn't miss it for the world." He smiled, we high-fived, and he opened the door to head back into his classroom.
This is the gospel to me.