Faithlife Sermons

Our Assignment

Illustration  •  Submitted
0 ratings
Notes & Transcripts

OUR ASSIGNMENT I like the story of the math teacher named Helen who gave her students an unusual assignment one day.  The students were struggling to understand some math concepts so they became mean and short with one another.  She instructed them to take out a blank piece of paper and write the name of each classmate and next to it write the nicest thing they could think of about that person. She collected all the lists and compiled them over the weekend. On Monday she gave the back to the students. Before long the entire class was smiling and comments were being made like, “Really? You think that about me?” “ I never knew I meant that much to anyone.” “I didn’t know others liked me so much.”

            Several years later Helen learned that one of those students, named Mark, had died in Vietnam. She attended his funeral and then gathered afterwards with his friends and family. Mark’s parents approached the teacher and said, “We want to show you something.” With that, the dad opened his wallet and removed two worn pieces of paper that had been taped, folded and refolded many times. The papers were the ones on which she had listed all the good things Mark’s classmates had said about him. Mark’s mother then said, “Thank you so much for doing that. As you can see, Mark treasured it.” Others took notice of the conversation , a former classmate named Chuck smiled and sheepishly said, “I still have my list too. Its in the top drawer of my desk at home.” Another student’s wife said, “John asked me to put his in our wedding album.” A former student named Marilyn, reached into her purse and took out a wallet and showed her worn list to the group assembled saying, “I carry mine with me all the time.”

Related Media
Related Illustrations