It’s a heart-wrenching moment. Your kid is being bullied. Anger. Frustration. Payback. Fear. Protection. Many strong emotions course through us.
Maybe you run to the school administration. Maybe you approach the kid’s parents. Maybe you set up a protective game-plan with your child. Maybe you confront the bully face-to-face. All we know is, this has to stop.
Aubrey Fontenot found himself in this very situation. His 8-year-old son, Jordan, was being bullied by another boy named Tamarion. Aubrey decided to go about it from a whole different angle though. After contacting and getting permission from the bully’s parents, Aubrey invited Tamarion out for a drive. As the made their way around Houston, Aubrey calmly asked Tamarion why he had been bullying Jordon. As it turns out, Tamarion was also being bullied by other kids at school for not having clean clothes and shoes. As kids often do, Tamarion started bully Jordon in an effort to deal with and control something in his life.
Surprised by this finding, Aubrey called Tamarion’s parents and found out they were homeless and obviously having financial difficulties. So, Aubrey decided to take the young bully out, where he bought him new clothes, shoes, and above all else, treated him like his own son. He talked to him about responsibility, self-respect, morals, integrity, and confidence. Then, he made Tamarion and Jordon sit down and discuss their differences with each other.
The result: the boys are now best friends (Read More Here).
What a first-class way to handle the situation. This dad is a father-of-the-year candidate. Like with many situations like this, it’s not surprising to find out that the way this was handled was very biblical. Consider the following:
- Don’t Jump To Judgment (Matthew 7:1-5). Aubrey could have easily rushed to judgment against Tamarion. There’s no doubt Tamarion was in the wrong. Instead, he decided to dig deeper and looked to understand his behavior. The result was much better than just getting him in trouble.
- Give A Soft Answer (Proverbs 15:1). Aubrey could have gone out with guns blazing in full parental rage mode. Instead, he chose the soft, understanding approach first. Had he reacted in anger, it very likely would have put both Tamarion and his parents into defense mode. This approach worked better than he could have ever hoped.
- Love Your Enemy (Matthew 5:43-44). Tamarion was the bully. The “enemy” as it appeared. And yet showing him love and kindness changed his heart. The boy who was once the enemy was now a friend.
Situations like these will come our way. It could be our child’s bully. It could be a co-worker. It could be a neighbor. It could even be a member of the church. Whatever the circumstance, let’s look to understand and connect with the person first. It may not always work, but it’s always worth the effort when we’re talking about someone’s lost soul.