Heavy Load for a Little Girl

I saw a girl crying today.  It was sad.

On my way to work this morning I drove through a residential area.  There were lots of kids walking to the bus stop loaded down with their school backpacks.  Pretty normal stuff.  The little boys were pushing each other and making faces.  The girls were in pairs or clustered in groups all animated and chatty.

A girl away from the other kids caught my eye.  She was walking alone carrying her books.  I guess her to be about age twelve.  Her head was slightly tilted down and her posture broadcasted a heavy load… a load more than books.

As she slowly moved, her distant eyes were a fixed gaze on the cement sidewalk just ahead of her feet.

And there were the tears.  These were not bawling tears that pour out because an upset adolescent is forcing a cry because she didn’t get to wear her favorite blouse.  But it was a large single wet path down her cheek to her chin.  The kind of tear that signals a heavy press.  You could just feel the heaviness.

My mind flew through a hundred different scenarios to assign cause for her pain.  None were good and some unthinkable.  To assume anything would be unfair and presumptuous.

I felt sad and helpless.  This made me angry.  It made me angry that in our society the default assumptions of a man approaching a young girl are questionable at best.  It made me angrier that our world is such that this scenario is magnified a 100% more because of race… she was black.

To me personally there were no gender, age or race issues.  Only that a hurting kid needed some encouragement and I couldn’t help.  It angered me.

Yes, as any good Christian… I prayed.  I prayed quite a bit.  But frankly, I felt bereft.

Now don’t get me wrong.  I believe in praying and that prayer does impact.  But it still felt somewhat hollow without some action.

Some of you may say I should have stopped regardless of the situation.  I don’t know… maybe.

I do believe that keeping going and not stopping was the right thing to do given the above mentioned realities.

Now the question is what am I suppose to do with this?  I really don’t know.  I write about it… so what?

I am trying to decide whether I want to unpack this in more detail or just move on.

Sigh!   I’m not sure.

I guess you will find out on Monday.

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