Boy Scouts of America Troop B
This was it the day all the scouts in troop B had been waiting for the big Boy Scout Jamboree. The trip up to the mountains from Elder Ville had taken almost two hours, and the young scouts were tired but ready for action.
“Troop B fall in!” The boys recognized the voice of their scoutmaster Mr. Truman. It had taken two jeeps, and a van too haul the nine scouts and three men including Mr. Truman and all their equipment to the campground. As the boys, who were already dressed in their camp uniforms, scurried to the front of the lead jeep, Mr. Truman called out. “Fall in scouts, we are losing precious time, some of these troops already have their tents up.”
“Hurry guys we just got here and we are already behind!” The voice of Billy Steel called back to the other eight scouts behind him. Billy was the top scout in the troop, and as such was the leader of the troop.
“We’re coming as fast as we can,” one of the other boys shouted to Billy who was about ten feet in front of the rest of them, “My legs hurt,” a loud cry from the very back of the pack. “Oh shut up, you’re always whining about something.” One of the older pack members scolded the youngest boy in the troop.
The older boy named Carl looked back and saw the lad, who had cried out in pain, now sitting on the ground. Carl turned and ran to the boy, “Toby, what is wrong with you?” The larger lad stood staring down at the smaller red headed kid, who was leaning against the van rubbing both his legs.
“I think I have leg cramps, I rode all the way up here in the back of that old beat up van,” The freckled face youngster continued. “My legs were cramped up against my chest, it was hot and all the tents and gear was piled on top of me.” Tears begin to well up in his eyes.
“Oh, you are kidding me, now you’re going to cry like a baby.” The words came out of Carl’s mouth as he placed both hands on his hips in disgust. “We’re already behind the other troops and now thanks to you we will probably finish in last place.”
“That’s enough Carl.” The unhappy tone of the voice was coming from behind Carl; he turned to look into the cold blue eyes of Billy Steel. “Join the rest of the troop, I will handle this.” Carl started to argue with Billy, but when he saw Billy’s countenance turn to anger, he decided against it.
With Carl, gone Billy turned his attention to the now sniffing crumpled child at his feet “I’m sorry Toby are you okay?” The boy nodded his head in an affirmative motion but without looking up into the older boy’s face. “Are your legs still hurting?” Again, a yes answer by a nodding of his head. “Carl, open that blue cooler and bring Toby a bottle of Gatorade.” Carl started shaking his head in discus, “Now Carl!” the order was more of a bark instead of a request, and was received in like manor as Carl tripped in the process of retrieving the drink and taking it to Billy. As Carl extended the cold container of liquid to Billy, Billy spoke “Hand it to Toby, and while you’re at it I think an apology would be in order, agreed?
“Here Toby, I’m sorry, please forgive me.” Toby looked up for the first time into the now longing eyes of Carl, in those eyes he saw a very different person. Eyes full of remorse and repentance, just waiting on forgiveness, just as he had the night he asked Christ to forgive him.
Toby took the bottle from Carl’s extended hand, “Thank you, and I believe you, thanks for the drink and the apology.”
Unknown to the three scouts, who were now smiling and slapping each other’s hands. Their scoutmaster, the other two adults, and the rest of the troop had been watching and listening, “All right scouts I want to say to this troop I trust we all have learned a valuable lesson today. As for myself I hope that we never make the mistake of packing gear and scouts together, and we are a unit and we either win together, or we fail together agreed.”
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