I attended Watkins Elementary School during my 5th and 6th grade year. Watkins is 3 miles from the house I grew up in and where my mother still lives today. That means that we walked to school all three miles in the rain, mud, and snow! Well, maybe not in super extreme conditions, but it did seem like a long distance for elementary students to walk.
We always walked in groups to make the walk seem not so long, and most of the time I walked with my older brother or an older friend. We were told to stay on one side of the street and only cross the street at the crosswalk with the crossing guard. The only problem with crossing at the crosswalk was the adult crossing guard would not allow us to make a detour to the corner store.
The easiest way to outsmart the crossing guard was to walk on the wrong side of the street. This way we could go to the store, cross back on the right side of the street, and go to the crosswalk as if nothing happened. We were serious about our candy if you were wondering.
But there was one day when I was with my older wiser friend (he was in the 6th grade) and we both had extra money to spend on that precious commodity. We carried out our usual plan and were on our way back to the other side of the street after purchasing the motherload.
I was right behind my friend and never took my eyes off of him as we ran across Northside Drive at 7:30 in the morning. The sound of screeching tires caught my attention as I looked to my right to see a car sliding toward me with blue smoke coming from the tires. Any other day I could tell you what make and model of the car that stopped about six feet from hitting me. But the only thing I remember for sure about this moment was that the occupants were two guys wear shirts, ties, and eyes bugging from their sockets!
Because I followed my friend, I almost went to see Jesus early. My friend didn’t intend for me to get hurt; he just didn’t realize that I was looking to him to lead me to safety. I made it to school that day, but I don’t remember eating the candy. I don’t remember eating anything that day.
Not much has changed today. Kids are looking for someone to lead them to safety.
hamsight: someone is following you