Defy Assumptions

It’s the the end of the school year in an elementary classroom. Backpacks have all been taken home. Beloved art projects moved from the walls to refrigerators. Scruff marks on the floor wait for the scrubbing magic of the janitor’s machines over the summer. The smell of corn dogs will linger in the air for weeks.

And in a bucket in the corner a hundreds of color crayons. Many are broken in half, or even smaller. Most of have paper ripped to get beyond the first sharp point. All of them will be added into the garbage pile before the teacher leaves. Brand new boxes of 24 or 48 will replace them all come August.


Broken. Shattered. Used. Old. Worthless.

Just a bunch of crayons that have existed beyond their purpose.

Have you ever felt that way about someone?

Have you ever felt that way about yourself?


The students in one class turned all those broken bits into something brand new. Placed them together into the image of a pig or a sailboat or (my favorite) a sunset over the water.

Instead of just a bunch of old crayons, they saw potential.


On my kitchen wall is a poster of the Eiffel Tower. Metal bars and electric lights, nothing fancy compared to architectural possibilities in 2019…

Standing outside on the playground with elementary school kids, the Macarena, a song that planned seven million times during my teenage years, came across the speakers. Rather than groan about its age, heads bopped along to the funny sounding tune…

This morning eight families at my church dedicated their children while standing on the stage that has been there for decades. The carpet is old and faded, with a color that seems hip for the 1970s. Wiggling infants and toddlers were promised life and love on a stage that sagged a little underneath them…


Everything has potential. Every person has potential.

An old crayon can be used to create a mosaic.

A person can show you a brand new way to see the world. Maybe you won’t agree with what they see, but you will be better for taking in the view.

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