Every school has that one weird kid. The kid who stands up in the middle of class to tell a really stupid joke, or to make a really ambiguous reference to a television show that nobody watches. That kid who always seems to have a story to go along with whatever the class is talking about, and even tries to change the topic just so they can hear their self speak. You might just have even had that one kid who doesn't exactly know what a social cue is. And when all ends meet, the final story is told and the last joke is made, they remain the same: an outcast. That one weird kid.
It might come as a surprise, when I say that I was, and still am, the weird kid. I remember all the times that I embarrassed in front of the classroom because I wanted to do something that qualified me as cool. I remember most, if not all, of the lies and stories I made up in hope of get someone to believe that I was really cool outside of school. I clearly remember informing my science teacher in eighth grade that we found moonshine and put it in my step-dad's diesel truck. Not only that, but claiming that it still ran afterwards. That was one of the many tall tales I formulated in an attempt to gain some fame.
I look back on it all now and remember how inferior I felt. Because of the way I acted, it pushed my fellow classmates away. I would watch as those around me made jokes with their friends and talk about going to hang out at someone's house for a weekend. I watched as those with so-called 'popularity' were laughed with, not laughed at. In a school of over five hundred students, I was alone. The kid that had no friends. The kid who always got bullied. That one weird kid.
It wasn't until the tenth grade that I joined the youth group of the church I attended. Shortly after, I was offered a position in the leadership. From there, I began to get closer to some the other leaders, and began to learn what it meant to be accepted. They taught me what it meant to have friends, and what it meant to be a friend.
I am a senior in high school now, and by all means, I am still an outcast. My little sister was telling me just the other day about a guy who was stating that half of my class still hates me. But I don't really care anymore. I might be an outcast, but that gives me right to define who I am and who I will be. I have made the personal decision to let God define who I am and who I will be.
There are two things I want you to get out of this:
If you aren't an outcast, get to know one. Really, we aren't that strange, we just never had a friend around to teach us what acceptance is. I couldn't tell you what I would've done for a friend when things got their worse.
And if you are an outcast? Don't let that bog you down. Find people who will comfort and encourage you, find people who will accept you. Not only that, but get to know the God who died for you.