I lead a small group for our senior girls on Sunday nights, and as we were talking about intentionally reaching out to others, I voiced this story.
There once was a girl named Katelyn who was the shyest and loneliest of all 5th graders at her new school. Every day after eating lunch she would sit under a tree with her two best friends, Oreo#1 and Oreo#2. Yes, actual cookies. Even the school monitor, Carmen, would come talk to her out of pity (mostly about boys to which the girl did not respond well).
One day another little chica named Stacia came over to invite her to play 4-square. Katelyn refused out of timidity. Her Oreos were her comfort zone. The next day Stacia came back and was rejected again, and the cycle continued for days. Finally, Katelyn miraculously answered with a ‘sure.’ The two girls played 4-square (with the occasional black magic and tetherball mixed in) for the rest of their 5th grade days.
Fifteen years later, Katelyn did the asking, and Stacia stood by as her maid of honor. Now, they mostly play phone tag, but 4-square sounds more fun. Christmas?
So, thank you, Stacia, for persistently reaching out to a lonely girl. She is forever thankful for your friendship. May we all follow your example.