The other day while I was making my deliveries I arrived at one of the schools and found a line coming out of the cafeteria. Normally this wouldn’t be anything unusual except school had now been in session for over an hour. So this was not kids lined up for breakfast and it was too early for lunch. Once I go passed the students the lunchroom manager explained to me the reason for all the kids being there.
They had had an assignment for Black History Month in which they were required to write a report on an assigned historical figure. The teacher had given them three weeks to complete this assignment. During the course of their study on their assigned figure they might would learn about the person’s importance to medicine, their creative skills, or how the person was a key figure in the civil rights movement, etc. As I said they had three weeks to complete it, and during those three weeks even had three snow days to allow for extra time to complete the task. No one was expected to uncover anything brand new about their subject; just turn in the usual report, on time. When it comes down to it there was no reason to not finish the job.
Trouble is, as it was explained to me, only a handful did the assignment. Every student who was standing there in line had chosen not to do the report. So the teacher out of frustration took all of the students who had failed in their responsibility and brought them across the hall where there was a phone in the kitchen. The teacher then proceeded to call each one of their parents, tell them what was going on, and then had the child explain to their parent why they didn’t do it. There were many excuses offered and none of the kids looked happy after that phone call.
Too many trivial things had come up in their lives. Television and video games made for easy targets but in the end it was a matter of having no desire to do it. Perhaps they felt like it didn’t really matter. Maybe some thought the teacher would forget about it; could be even some of the students forgot about it.
One of the problems in our world today is that of the mind set of a “throw away”. If something is broken ‘throw it away’ and get a new one. Should trouble arise in your marriage ‘throw it away’ and get something better for yourself. Don’t want an education ‘throw away’ the time by playing or chasing what really interests you. This ‘throw away’ mentality is becoming worse and worse, and the next generation will pay a heavier price for it than the previous.
While thinking on this scene I remembered some people over in the book of Third John v12 “Demetrius hath good report of all men, and of the truth itself: yea, and we also bear record; and ye know that our record is true.” In actuality there are four men here in this little book of the Bible who a report is given on.
1. John the Beloved or the apostle John. This is his letter after all, and being an apostle I think we can take him at his word. He declares in this verse that his record or report is true. Indeed we have a total of five books of the Bible from his pen. John was looking to build up the brethren. Not in anyway that he could be in the proper way. He wasn’t going to just make you feel good about yourself. If there was an issue he was willing to tell you. I don’t believe he would do that to tear you down but because you needed the help. Truly he had a good report.
2. Diotrephes. This man had a bad report. And from all indications he wasn’t looking to improve on it. While he wasn’t in on the ground floor of the ‘throw away’ movement he certainly had stock in it. He from what we can see was willing to ‘throw away’ people over any little infraction. Diotrephes was willing to ‘throw away’ the apostle John (v9). Anything that stood in his way of getting all the attention (preeminence) had to be gotten rid of quickly. The report on him was not good.
3. Demetrius. All those who knew this brother liked him and respected him. And with the ‘truth’ being referenced here talking about Jesus, he was in pretty good standing. The report on him was one of faithfulness. He set about doing what God wanted him to do. And John was willing to back him up on it.
4. Gaius. A man who had a good report. He was called “wellbeloved” or dear. His walk with the Lord was one that was easily spotted and admired. Gaius had no problem helping people out whether he knew them or not. And v6 indicates that he may have supported missionaries. It would be fair to say that he loved his fellow man and wanted to see everyone go to heaven.
Three good reports and one bad report. A winning percentage of .750; had this been about a baseball player that stat would be great! If our modern church, living in our modern day “throw away” society, had a percentage like that that would be great as well.
One day our report will also come due. There will be no phone call to our parents though. For those who are saved their report will be “handed in” if you at the Judgment Seat of Christ. 2 Corinthians 5:10 “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.” And for those who do not accept Jesus as their savior their report will be viewed at the Great White Throne of Judgment. Revelation 20:15 “And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.”
How is your report coming along?