Are You A Gangster

A 10 year old boy named Lucas was walking home from New Word Elementary and bumped into a 12 year old kid named Marcus from LES Middle school by accident. It wasn’t a hard bump and Lucas, quickly apologized and went on his way, but Marcus was upset and followed Lucas yelling at him and calling him names. Lucas looked back and once again apologized, but Marcus would not relent, Marcus eventually caught up to Lucas, pushed him down and yelled “I am a gangster like Scarface, so don’t ever bump into me again!” Lucas was a little shaken, but ok. Lucas got up off the ground, dusted himself off and began to walk away. A few minutes later he heard screaming, he looked back and saw Marcus on the ground. The neighborhood drug dealer Tromone had seen the entire thing, he was 18 and not to be trifled with! Marcus lay on the ground cowering and flinching. Tromone stood over Marcus a while to let the terror of the moment magnify and in a low and menacing voice Tromone whispered to “I guess you are not as gangster as you thought you were!”

This story is based on real life events that took place in Baton Rouge, La. in the early nineties and expresses the need to always show humility. We can get angry with God, with life, with others, and through that anger feel entitled and secure and even affirmed in our reprehensible mistreatment of others. We can feel that we have it rough and thus others should also have it rough or that someone wronged us, so it is justifiable to wrong them back equally so and worse even. The problem with this is that one day we will look up and see Tromone standing over us and realize that we are not as gangster as we thought we were. The bible says…

Luke 14:11
New Living Translation
For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”

1 Peter 5:6
New Living Translation
So humble yourselves under the mighty power of God, and at the right time he will lift you up in honor.

Psalm 25:9
New American Standard Bible 
He leads the humble in justice, And He teaches the humble His way.

And when we stray away from humility… well… goodbye steak and potatoes…

Deuteronomy 8:16
New Living Translation
He fed you with manna in the wilderness, a food unknown to your ancestors. He did this to humble you and test you for your own good.

And if we want to come back…

2 Chronicles 7:14
New Living Translation
Then if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land.

Humility isn’t allowing Marcus to repeatedly push you down, humility is apologizing for bumping into him in the first place and not escalating the disagreement because “my point is valid”, “I shouldn’t be treated this way” “it was only an accident” or my favorite “I wouldn’t treat you that way so don’t treat me that way”. These are all poor excuses for a lack of humility. Love will lead always when allowed, so love always and not only when it is convenient. The bible says…

Luke 6:32

New Living Translation
“If you love only those who love you, why should you get credit for that? Even sinners love those who love them!

Humility is doing the opposite of entitlement and anger and leading with grace and forgiveness even when you do not understand why you are being treated a certain way.

The little boy in the story, Lucus, was me , Marcus the bully was a kid named Tony and the drug dealer shall go unnamed. I was jumped by Tony and a group of boys for protecting another boy named Elliot a few days prior from getting jumped. The payment for meddling in their affairs was that I got what he was going to get. The guys literally stumped me into a ditch less than 20 feet from the front of my house and even after being jumped by 4, 5, 6 plus guys I still walked out with no breaks, no major visible damage and even with my honor avenged per se. Vengeances is mine said the Lord, Romans 12:19, Deuteronomy 33:35 so I did not need to avenge myself whether I saw God deal with it or not. My job was only to be humble and let God do what God did.

All and all, am I a gangster, not at all and I do not claim to be. I am a simple man, with a desire to repent of my sins and love God better than I currently am. Was Tony a gangster, maybe he really was, but even so when faced off with an unlikely adversary sent by the savior to avenge one of his own, well… in those cases the world quickly sees that no one is as much of a gangster as they thought they were.



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