In the mid 70s, we moved from Utah to Gilbert, Arizona because of the hub's job. At that time, our family consisted of 3-month-old twin girls. Shortly after moving in to our new home, I was asked to be in the Primary Presidency (church group for children). It was during the time that Primary was held on a weekday, after school. All the children met in the chapel for singing and talks before going to individual classes. I enjoyed working with the children and getting to know them.
On one particular day, I was conducting in the chapel. While sitting on the stand, I noticed a seven-year-old boy misbehaving. The teacher sitting behind him, Sister Brown, was trying to lovingly discipline him but he turned around and sassed her. I was surprised at his behavior but decided to give him a chance and see what he would do. It happened again. I determined that Sister Brown didn't have to deal with that unruly child. During the song, I stood up, went down the steps from the stand, leaned in to the row and motioned for this irreverent child to follow me back up to the stand and sit by me. He did without hesitation.
At the end of the meeting, I excused each class then sat next to the juvenile delinquent. I told him that I was disappointed in the way he treated Sister Brown and that he wasn't reverent in the chapel. I asked him if he thought he could do better next week. He nodded his head. At that point in time, I realized I need to get to know him better. I asked his name. "Caleb", he said. I asked his last name. "Brown!" My mind started putting 2 and 2 together. Yeah, I had taken Sister Brown's own son from her grasp and set him up front for all to see. I apologized to her. She chuckled and said that she was glad that he realized someone else expected him to behave.
Sometimes it's hard to be the new kid on the block!
2 days ago