The children all went to lunch and after lunch they came back in the classroom. The teacher said, “Children, we are going to play a game with dominoes this afternoon!” She and Ms. Amazing got five tables set up around the room. Two on each side snugged up against each other and one connecting them.
As Ms. Amazing was handing a full box of dominos to each child, the teacher was telling them, “Children, I want two children on each side of each table. And take your boxes of dominos.” The Little Boy made sure he got next to the Little Girl as all the other children got in place.
Teacher said, “I want you to look at the tables. You will see black lines on them right? All the children said “yes teacher!” “Those on the left side of the room I want you to line up your dominoes. She went over to the top of the table, opened up the domino box and started putting the domino’s on end, on each one of those lines.” Then she went to the other side and said “children? You see the lines right?” And they nodded and said “yes teacher!” “I want you to set your domino’s up on each of the lines that you see. She opened up one of the children’s boxes and started setting the dominoes on each line. “Now open your boxes and put one domino on each line like you saw me do.
The room got louder and louder with all the children talking and laughing and dominoes falling over and falling on the floor. The children did not see The Stranger come into the room. He walked over to the hearts and sat next to the counter. Pretty soon all the dominoes on each of the tables were set up. On the left side, the dominoes were half an inch apart and on the right side the domino’s were 1 inch apart.
“Ok children, I want you to go out for recess. Ms. Amazing and I will set up the rest of the dominoes on the table in the middle.” The kids all ran outside for recess. The teacher looked over at The Stranger and said “Welcome. It’s been a while since we’ve seen you.”
“Yes it has been. I’ve been busy with the townspeople getting the cafe expanded and a construction company set up. Things are happening in this town. It was a wonderful thing that the children took up that cork road.”
“Yes it was,” the Teacher replied. “It’s been hard walking on it, but I got the hang of it rather quickly. The Lord showed me how.” The Stranger said, “you have begun showing, does anyone else know?” The teacher laughed, “oh yes! Everyone knows! All the adults anyway, the kids really don’t pay attention.” The Stranger asked her, “you’ve got what? 3 months left?” The teacher said “Yes, that’s exactly right. This is so exciting. I have waited for this for so long. The baby has been kicking.” The Stranger asked her, “Did you go to the doctor and find out what sex it is?” “Yes I’ve been to the doctor but I didn’t do the ultrasound. I want it to be a surprise.” The Stranger smiled, “I’m sure it will be a surprise.”
The teacher thought she heard The Stranger say he was ‘sure’ it would be a surprise but there was so much noise in the classroom she figured she didn’t hear him right. She and Ms. Amazing were just finishing setting up the dominos as the recess bell rang and the kids started coming in to the classroom noisily.
Everyone saw The Stranger now! The Little Boy ran over to The Stranger and he said “Hi! Hi! When did you get here?” The Stranger said, “When you kids were setting up your dominos.” “How come you didn’t say hi?” The Stranger replied, “because you were busy and I didn’t want to interrupt the teacher.”
The teacher clapped her hands and said “Children! Children! Come over here please. All the kids ran over to where she was. Look at the table in the middle. See how the dominos curve from where you left off placing your dominos? The children said “yes teacher. “Ok. Now I want you to stand around the table and I want you to watch this very closely.” The Teacher reached out her finger on the left side of the table where the domino’s were half an inch apart. Now watch what happens when I touch the first one.” She lightly pushed on the first domino.
It struck the next one and then the next and the next, and it went all the way around the table and came back to the top and back down to the bottom and came back to the top and then back down to the bottom and around the corner and in the circle that they had made on the table in the middle. Till all the Domino’s had hit each other and they had all fallen down.
As it was happening you could hear children oohing and ahhing and hands clapping. “Did you see how quickly that happened, children?” “Yes!” They shouted. “Now watch when Ms. Amazing pushes the one over there on that table. The dominoes are set farther apart, remember?” The kids said “Yes we remember.” The teacher said “I want you to pay attention to see the rate of speed at which they fall.”
She nodded her head to Ms. Amazing, who pushed the domino. It fell but was a lot more slow! It fell back and then hit the next one, hit the next one and went down to the bottom and up to the top and down to the bottom and up to the top and down to the bottom, around the corner and knocked everything down in the circle just like the other one had done, but it took longer.
The teacher asked, “did you notice that it was different?” The children all said “yes we did! It was slower!” The teacher said “Good, that is exactly what I wanted you to see. Now gather up all the dominos except for 10 each and put them in this bag over here and we will put them back in the boxes tomorrow.” So the children gathered them all up and placed them in them in the bag.
“Now children,” begin the teacher, “I wanted you to see that for a reason. It was pretty impressive wasn’t it?” “Yeah, yeah! It was cool! It was neat! Can we do it again?” “We’re going to do it just with 5 this time. So I want each of you children to take 10 dominos and line up 5 close together and five further apart.”
So all the children did what she said. “I want you to wait until I count to three and then I want you to lightly push – if you do it hard it won’t work, so just very lightly, push on the line that is closest together. Okay one, two, three.” The children pushed and some of the boys pushed too hard and they all fell down and it didn’t work. But most of the children just pushed lightly, and their dominoes fell down quickly. The teacher asked, “Did they fall down slowly or quickly?” The children said “quickly.” The teacher said, “I’m going to count to three again and you boys in the back, I want you to push lightly. You can see you didn’t have the fun of doing it the right way. If you do it the right way it will be fun for you. So when I count to three, I want you all to gently push on the one in the front of the line that is set far apart. One, two, three.” All the children pushed lightly. Even the boys in the back. And the dominoes fell. The teacher asked, “Did they fall as fast as the first line?” “No Teacher.”
“This is a lesson to show you something. You are the first domino in line. When you do something good, like keeping your word, speaking nicely to each other, saying nice things to each other, giving honor and respect to each other, thinking on good things, then the goodness goes from you and touches others.
If you are mean to others, think bad thoughts, don’t keep your word and disrespect each other, the same thing happens. It starts with you and goes to everyone else you are around.
Sometimes it happens quickly like the first line of Domino’s, and sometimes it happens slowly like the second line of dominos. Sometimes if you are nice to someone, then they in turn feel good and they are nice to the next person. The same thing happens if you’re mean to someone. It makes that person feel bad and chances are, the person they meet or talk to, they’re not going to be nice too. People act the way they’re treated. Some people cannot get out of that rut. They are grumpy all the time. They have no smiles to give anyone else because they have no kindness inside them.
It could have been something that happened when they were a child like you, or something that happened this morning.
Some of those grumpy, complaining people get past it because someone has been kind and loving toward them and it healed their heart. Just like you’ve seen with your hearts on the counter. When nice things are said, hearts are healed.
But some time, even though some people have had a smile or two given to them, they still have hurt deep inside their heart and at some point, it comes up and they turn mean again. That’s like the domino’s in the second line. It might not happen right away, it might take a while before it happens. But whether we are good to others or whether we are mean to others, whichever way you act, that’s the life that you are setting up for yourselves. That’s the actions and reaction you will receive as you go through life. What you give, you will get back.
If you are nice to someone, it will go from that person to the next. And it will keep on going. However when the chain is broken, even though you are good to her, maybe someone else is mean to her and hurt her, then at some point that will need to be healed. The first step to being healed of anything children, anything in your life, the very first step to be healed of any hurt in your heart, is to forgive the person that hurt you.
When all the dominoes went down, even though only the first one was touched, that’s called the ripple effect. What happens with the first one happens with the rest of them. So I want you to start today to remember this. I want you to think about how you want your next school year to be. How you want tomorrow to be. If you want good things tomorrow, you need to say and do good things today.
If you want to learn things, then you have to pay attention, not misbehave in class. However you behave, however you act children, throughout your lives, however you treat others throughout your life is how you will be treated by others. What you give out is what you will get back. If you give out niceness, you will get back niceness, if you give out mean things, then you’ll get back mean things. What you give to others from your heart, is what eventually, will come back to you.
Sometimes when you give out niceness, sometimes you’ll get back mean things, because other people don’t know how to act. They don’t know that they are loved and they don’t know how to get healed. So you try your very best to be nice to people, to smile and be kind.
“Does anyone know how a ripple effect of being mean could be stopped?” The Little Girl raised her hand. the teacher called on her. “Teacher, if somebody called somebody else stupid, then the person that was called that bad name, could put it in their hand and they could give it to Jesus right?”
“Yes honey absolutely. Anyone else?” A Little Boy in the back said,”Teacher If somebody called me stupid, I would call them stupid right back and that’d get it off me!”
The teacher said, “no honey it wouldn’t get it off of you. What you would be doing is you would be hurting somebody else because they hurt you. It wouldn’t get it off you, it would still be stuck on you. The only way you can get it off of you is to forgive the other person. Right then and there, you have to forgive them. Even if you don’t say it out loud to their face, under your breath you can say ‘I forgive you’. You can say it in your mind and you don’t act mean back to them. Because how you act today is how your life will be tomorrow.
Children you have to forgive. You can write it on a piece of paper and throw it away. But don’t keep remembering it over and over. You can also imagine that you’re taking that hurt out of your heart and put it in your hands and give it to Jesus. How you live your lives, what you pass to others, is whether you leave this world a better place, or the same or worse. Just remember when someone hurts you, you must forgive them.”
“Teacher, what if I don’t feel like forgiving them?” “Honey it’s not about what you feel. In the Bible, Jesus says we must forgive others. He never said if you feel like it. He never said if your feelings are still hurt you don’t have to. He said we have to forgive each other.
The first step toward making peace with your friends and your family and those around you whether you like them or not, is to treat them nicely and if they hurt you to forgive them. We also need to give our anger to Jesus. That way, we won’t stay hurt and angry and good comes back to us. The more good you give out in the world, the more love and patience and being nice, the more it will come back to you.
What I wanted to show you was the ripple effect. If you do something good then it gets passed to someone else. If you do something mean, that also gets passed to someone else. Every time you are on the playground and you speak to another child using the word on their necklace, it makes them feel good. When they do the same with you, you feel good. Then you keep making others feel good. Life is all about forgiveness and helping each other.
4.30.18 people pay attention to
Father, what happened?
“People pay attention to what’s important to them. They trusted the person that you were with.” ‘Why didn’t they see the aftermath?’ “People only see what they want to see.
Every single person on earth has issues, Janine. Some have dealt with the most horrible ones, some have not. Some have dealt with some of the obvious ones, some have not. Some have buried them. Some have not. It’s because of these issues that everyone has, that people see what is there, or what they fabricate. Some people see the truth, some people see what they want to see. Having ears to hear. Having eyes to see. Having a heart that is open to me. Sometimes people, when they don’t know how to deal with things, will close their eyes to what’s going on.
Sometimes people don’t want to deal with things, so they close their eyes and close their heart. Both are just as bad Nini. Both are just as painful aren’t they?” ‘Yeah Daddy they are.’
“For the most part Janine, people are all caught up in themselves. They think about themselves, pray about themselves, they’re all caught up in themselves. There are few that think about others. You think about others to a great degree. You have thought about others before you think about yourself. To the detriment of yourself. There is a happy medium my girl.”
I started crying thinking that I’m bad again. And Jesus said “oh no no no no Nini,! No Janine! I was not saying you are bad! I was saying that to help you to see, help you to understand. Don’t listen to the evil one. Anything negative in your head is from him, it’s never from me.”