Dusty and the Bully

"Aah, this sunbath feels good," Dusty murmured as he drowsed in the sunshine. He did not know his friend, Cocoa, was waiting for the right moment to run in and bite him. (At least he thought she was his friend.)

Cocoa crept closer and closer. Soon the little brown bunny was just a few feet away from where Dusty slept. Her nose wiggled with excitement, and she lunged at Dusty and bit him hard.

Dusty flew into the air and hopped away with all the speed he could muster. Cocoa stood in the room, with white fur hanging out of her mouth, and watched him flee.

She acted so nice sometimes, but other times, she was as mean as she could be. The little girl bunny took Dusty's spot in the sun and went to sleep, quite pleased with herself.

Dusty tried to calm down and let his heart beat normally again. What is wrong with her? he wondered. Why does she do those things? I try to be nice to her. It doesn't make any sense.

He licked the sore spot where she had bitten him. He noticed some of his soft white fur was missing. The little white fuzzy guy just couldn't figure out why she had to be so mean.

His owner saw the whole thing and scolded Cocoa. She put up the wire screen in the door to separate them. Dusty didn't really like being separated from Cocoa, but it did make life easier for him.

Then his owner came and petted him gently over and over until he was calm again. "I'm sorry, Dusty, that Cocoa is so bad to you," she murmured. "It'll be okay. I'll keep you safe from her." Dusty clacked his teeth to show her he believed her.

Dusty noticed that, sometimes, the one he had thought was a friend was really an enemy. He had trusted her, but that little bunny girl had hurt him when he had least expected it. While Cocoa's behavior was very bad, Dusty knew their owner was trying to figure out why Cocoa acted that way. She also made an effort to protect Dusty.

I know I can trust my owners. They always try to protect and take good care of me.

"Zzz," snored Dusty as he relaxed and let his owner take over.

Has a bully ever hurt you? Sometimes that person might hit or bite or kick, but a bully can also hurt with words. Has someone made fun of you and called you names? Did it hurt your feelings? Were you scared?

God is watching over you, just as Dusty's owner watched over Dusty. He wants you to be safe and not be afraid of others. If a bully does hurt you, turn to God right away and tell Him all about it. He will help you feel better, and He will take steps to keep the mean person from hurting you. He also wants you to pray for that person. That's the lesson Dusty wants to share about dealing with a bully.

"You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world" (1 John 4:4, NIV).

"'But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you'" (Matthew 5:44, NIV).

By Crystal J. Ortmann