Trying to Be Like Jesus Christ

By Hunter Holton, age 7

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A Good Friend

Some people talk and laugh at you, But I won’t! I won’t! I’ll walk with you. I’ll talk with you. That’s how I’ll show my love for you. (Children’s Songbook, pages 140–141.)

My name is Hunter Holton, and I am now seven years old. I live in Madison, Mississippi. My story started two years ago, when I was in kindergarten. A boy named Patrick was in my class. He was a little different from the rest of the kids. He went to special classes and was in our class for only a short time each day. He also ate lunch and went to recess with us.

I was always taught to be a friend to everyone, so I was Patrick’s friend. On the first day of school most of the kids stared at him. Then they started to make fun of him and didn’t want him to play with them. When I saw how upset he was, I walked over to him and asked if he wanted to play. Patrick smiled at me and put his arm around my back, and we went over to the playground and played.

When we went inside, I heard some of the kids say ugly stuff about Patrick and me playing together. So I turned to them and told them that it wasn’t nice to be that way. After school, I went home and thought about Patrick.

For the next week or so it was the same—I played with Patrick, and the others laughed at him. One day someone said, “Come and play with us, Hunter.” I went, and Patrick came too. They told Patrick that he couldn’t play with them, and he was so hurt that he started to cry. Then I said, “I can’t play, either.”

When they started to say some real ugly things to Patrick, I told them that they were very wrong to say those things and act the way they were. I also told them that we are supposed to act like Jesus Christ and that they weren’t acting like Him. I explained about loving everyone and treating people like the Savior treated people. They were soon playing with both of us, and we all became friends.

Patrick always went where I went and did as I did. I helped him with his schoolwork because I would finish mine first. My teachers told my mom what I had done for Patrick. She was pleased that I was trying to do what Jesus Christ would do. My teachers told Patrick to always follow me. Then they would know he was doing what he was supposed to do. This made me feel good inside.

The school leaders put Patrick in my first grade class so that he and I could have another year together. They felt like he still needed a friend he could depend on. When we got to the second grade, Patrick was not in my class. The school leaders had decided that he needed to learn to do things without me. Whenever Patrick sees me on the school playground, he comes over and gives me a hug, and all of us friends play together.

[illustration] Illustrated by Dick Brown