I Hope You’re Not Like These Kids

rain

The sun came out only once – every seven years, for just one day. Margot was the only girl in the class who had seen the sun once, when she was barely old enough to remember it. But no one believed her when she tried to describe it. So they tossed her into the closet before the teacher returned to the classroom.

I read this short story by Ray Bradbury when I was in junior high. It was more memorable than the long-awaited release of The Lost World: Jurassic Park. It affected me more than my first boy/girl dance. It moved me more than even the death of Princess Diana. Hardly a month has gone by in the last sixteen years when I haven’t thought back to this story.

Why? Because of its conviction.

You see, the day they throw Margot into the closet is the day the scientists predict that the rain will stop, and the clouds will clear for just a few hours, like they did seven years ago, and the sun will come out. That’s how it is on Venus, and every single day, its inhabitants wake up to pelting rain, work by flashes of lighting, and go to sleep listening to rumbles of thunder.

But this day, they will finally see the sun, and run, and play, and tan, and smile, and laugh, and live.

But the sun will not be meant for Margot. Even though she’s anticipated and longed for this day for the last 2,555 days, she will know nothing but the darkness of a closet, and the taste of dust on her tongue, and only the faint sounds of her schoolmate’s shrieks of laughter far off in the distance.

Tomorrow her skin will remain ghastly pale while her friends show off their tans and sunspots.

I wonder. How many people in my life do I leave locked in the closet of darkness while I bask in the love and glow of Jesus?

I wonder.

How long will I continue to keep the light of God from those who desperately need a Savior, who are weary of being kept a prisoner of darkness, while the rest of us go to church and carry on with the benefits of God’s heavenly light?

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About Andrew Toy
I'm in the beginning stages of starting my own publishing company that's unlike anything you've ever heard of in the industry. The direction of AdoptingJames is taking a 90-degree turn and will be more writing/publishing-focused. Stay tuned for huge updates and exciting news!

32 Responses to I Hope You’re Not Like These Kids

  1. Pierotucci says:

    I too have the same memories of reading this story when I was young. The sorrow – the pain, I feel it every time I think of this story.

  2. newstart777 says:

    The good thing is even when we are sleep, or are busily at work, our blogs keep on giving and reaching out. May we continue being transformed into fishers of men and women, as some of us have already been pulled up out by God’s glorious mercy, in order to allow him to continue delivering others out of the darkness, through the brilliant light he so gracious has instilled in us.

  3. debkirk3 says:

    Wow! James, thank you.

  4. Colaface says:

    The talk of Jesus is such a touchy subject for most people. Most people automatically think they must convert to some organized religion to give the acts of jesus any merit. Feel that they HAVE to adopt faith in the christian god in order to want to emulate jesus. You cannot possibly keep the light of god from ANYONE who needs a savior because if their heart is open, they will let the light in.

    Keep being a good person, and lead by example. Jesus didn’t go to the public and preach, the public came to him to hear it.

  5. Colaface says:

    I didn’t read the book, but I would like to know if they locked the little girl in the closet? Because if they did, then I assume the girl didn’t want to stay in the dark.

    • I posted the link to the short story in the post. Second paragraph.

      • Colaface says:

        I didnt pay attention to it being a short story.

        As Einstein said “The world is a dangerous place to live; not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don’t do anything about it.”

        You’re reaching out to people with your blog, and I feel I can be certain that you help those that reach out around you.

        Sometimes people choose to remain in the darkness, and sometimes, there’s nothing you can do to pull them out of it.

        Sorry about the essays, take care!

  6. wow! thank you. incredible analogy.

  7. Melanie says:

    I remember this story from junior high and I also think about it constantly! It was this story and another one called The Lottery. You gave me the chills. I remembered the girls name and everything because I couldn’t understand why there was a T at the end of her name.

    Most people haven’t experienced the light of God yet. Maybe for a few split seconds their veils were lifted, but then they slink back away into darkness and don’t trust that it’s really there. Great post!

  8. “How many people in my life do I leave locked in the closet of darkness while I bask in the love and glow of Jesus?”

    THANK YOU for asking such a great question and convicting me… I appreciate it!!

  9. Kelly says:

    Holy cow. Powerful message, and a great reminder.

  10. Cheri L. says:

    Now you know why I love good literature. It has such lessons to teach us, no matter what the genre. Thank you for this insight and for introducing me to one of RB’s stories that I haven’t seen.

  11. Jill says:

    The only thing I can say is WOW!

  12. Judy says:

    I never read that story, but woah, what an excellent point!

  13. Hmm…great post. Sometimes, we are carried away just enjoying His love that we forget that there are people out there who might never know Jesus if we don’t reach out and speak to them. This is a call to action, to reach out and speak out. Bless your darling heart, and thanks for ths follow.

  14. Amen! I have never read that short story before. Was truly blessed by this blog! If only all believers carried that same conviction.

  15. chengboiser says:

    Thanks you for sharing the story, I haven’t read that before. And what a powerful analogy, Although we can’t preach and spread the word of God, we can just show it by doing his work and one of it is charity.

  16. Benmo says:

    We can describe Jesus, explain Jesus, and praise Jesus, but some folks will gleefully lock us in the closet anyway because their hearts are hardened. It is by constant example and the grace of God that these lost souls might open their eyes to see the goodness of the Lord and choose to cling to Him.

  17. What a truly sad story and haunting memory, but in the end it has done it’s job if it makes you more aware and thoughtful of others.

  18. Caro says:

    This brought back memories. Thanks.

  19. hopesquires says:

    How funny/odd. I was just thinking of this story the other day, though now I can’t remember why. It’s a gripping story that haunts me from time to time. I like how you’ve connected it to hiding the light of Jesus’ love.

  20. Yes, it was a very effective tale of heartbreaking sadness, brought on by bullies who hated Margot for knowing the truth, and for being able to communicate eloquently about it. It was just right for the sensitive years in junior high, too.
    I have experienced this bullying, myself, from fellow church goers who do not want to hear the whole truth and choose to fix their problems by locking me out.
    Hide ti under a bushel? NO!
    I’m gonna let it shine, let it shine, let it shine, let it shine.
    Thanks for reminding me of my kinship with Margot.

    Oh–and we’re old! 😉

  21. Oh, almost forgot:
    Doesn’t the name “Margot” mean “daisy”? Such a sunny blossom!

    And wasn’t this the poem:

    I think the sun is a flower
    That blooms for just one hour.

    Never realized that connection until just now.

  22. I didn’t read that story in Middle School, instead I read it in one of my Son’s Literature books when HE was in Middle School. I think it is one of the most gut-wrenching, profound things I have EVER read and even though my Son is in College now, I’ve never forgotten it. It’s funny too cuz I was just thinking of it recently ! Anyway, I wanted to thank you for checking out my blog and for the follow. I really appreciate it and will return the favor ❤

  23. fritz163 says:

    That story made me cry when I was young. But you’re so right; it’s easy to shut the door and keep Jesus to ourselves. I don’t want to do that anymore.

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