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Learning How to Share Peace—and Cheez-Its

April 22, 2023

Another Way for week of April 14, 2023

Learning How to Share Peace—and Cheez-Its

I’ve heard several uplifting stories recently that seem worth sharing for anyone else struggling with kids—or rejoicing at young boys and girls showing signs they’re growing up well.

The first story takes place at church and involves two brothers who love going up front to play simple musical instruments (drums, maracas, tambourines) when their small congregation sings songs. Sometimes, as kids do, there is a slight skirmish as children select their instrument of choice.

One boy, I’ll call him Peter, snagged one of the two drums. A younger boy kept hunting and searching the instrument box, not selecting anything. This went on quite a while as everyone in this smallish church waited patiently (with some friendly chatter and encouragement) for the children to find suitable instruments.

One mother decided to go help the younger boy, we’ll call him Danny, to just pick something. It turned out that Danny was looking for a drum which one of the other children had already chosen. Danny steadfastly refused anything else offered. Then Peter offered his drum to his little brother, which Danny happily accepted. Peter chose something else. Everyone breathed a bit easier as Peter made a mature peacemaking decision for the group. The mother happily praised her son later for doing the “right thing.”

In another tense situation, Bobby went to his friend Will’s birthday party. One of the activity options was jumping at a trampoline park, an arcade, and playing on a mini basketball court. Apparently, there were only a few balls to go around, not enough for Will’s group at the party. For a time, the birthday group had all the balls and a smaller boy came up and asked if he could have a ball. When no one gave him a ball, he said “I’m going to go tell my mom!” One older boy retorted “Oh yeah? What’s your mom going to do about it?” Then Bobby took a ball from one of the other friends, Zach, and gave it to the smaller boy. Bobby reported that Zach initially said “Hey!” (about losing his ball) but when he saw what Bobby was doing to share the ball, he was okay with it. Bobby’s mother told him he’d made her very proud and happy, and that he was a good person for securing a ball for the younger boy. The parents were glad to see Bobby thinking for himself and using his own judgment, and not just follow a ringleader.

Another heartening story: Nine-and-a-half-year-old Nathan enjoys volunteering and is finally old enough to help read the scripture at his church. His grandmother shared the happy news with her small group at her church, and was able to watch Nathan on YouTube. So many children have had their church experiences curtailed by the pandemic, and many churches are having difficulty jumping in after a two-to-three-year gap of staying home and “watching” a church service or “Sunday school” class online.

Finally, I had to smile at this. One four-year-old boy came home from church talking about “Cheez-Its” and his mother thought he was talking about a snack he had with the other children. “No,” he said firmly, “In church we learned about ‘Cheez-Its’. Cheez-Its was a person.” (Jesus, of course.)

The organization I used to work for has come out with a new storybook for families or churches looking for resources to help kids “get back to church” or at least learning from the Bible. The name of the new storybook is “The Peace Table” and information is available in my end material.

I hope there’s always room at the table for persons to learn and make the world a better place by helping others—and children absorb surprising lessons from their parents, teachers, friends, and elders. 

Comment or share stories of your kids–or adults–making peace!

We’d love to hear more! Change names as necessary!

For more information on The Peace Table visit Book available June 2. Or write to me at Another Way, P.O. Box 363, Singers Glen, VA 22834, or email

Another Way is a column by Melodie Davis, in syndication since 1987. She is the author of ten books, most recently Memoir of an Unimagined Career. Another Way columns are posted at a week after newspaper publication.  


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