I am telling on myself today. While recently driving by the old school I once attended, a memory surfaced out of the blue. And as I dusted a half-century of cobwebs away, that day came back to me clearly. It was the first time I played hooky.
What I do not remember is why. School was not a burden to me, nor did I dislike going. Perhaps it was the eager willingness of an accomplice who will remain anonymous. Anyway, the plan of two 12-year-old delinquent minds came together. It seemed like a good idea at the time.
We slipped off into the woods before classes began and the “adventure” began. It was quite entertaining for an hour or so and then time slowed to a crawl.
We could not go home, that was for sure. We had to avoid being seen by other adults, especially the local police. And maybe the biggest flaw in our plan was leaving before lunch. We were hungry.
In the end, it was a real chore hiding out all day long. I never told my buddy, but I wish I had played hooky from playing hooky. Three o’clock couldn’t come fast enough. I learned that, sometimes, doing nothing can be hard work.
Looking back, I smile at the innocent shenanigans of youth. But this recollection made me acutely aware how it was a precursor to the future. This is what I mean. There were so many times to come that I worked extremely hard at doing the wrong things. Sadly, these things were not so innocent.
Then I began to examine the broader picture of the world. I have witnessed many addicts work tirelessly finding money or supplies for their next fix. I knew one fellow that could have been a wealthy man had he expended that much energy doing the right thing.
Men and women every day sneak around on their significant others, concocting elaborate plans for secret meetings. They put so much effort into infidelity. How many marriages could be saved if they worked that hard in their relationships?
Take a moment to consider our elected leaders on every side of the political spectrum. How much time, diligence and money are used in campaigning. What would this country look like if they invested that much labor and service to the people they are elected to represent?
I could go on and on, such is life. How did I get straightened out? I found my answer in Christ. Each of us must choose our own paths and what to believe in. Anne Wilson has a song that says, “Let me tell you about my Jesus. And let my Jesus change your life.” That is what I try to do. He sure changed mine.
Wandering around in the woods playing hooky seems a lifetime ago, but the message is the same for all of us. Work as diligently doing the right thing as one does while chasing sin. The world will be a much better place. Working hard at the wrong things. Think about it.