Have you ever heard of Ruby Bridges? She was a young African American who lived in New Orleans in 1960. She was the only black child who was sent to an elementary school that had been an all-white school. She was just six years old. Many parents protested and took their kids out of school.
But this little girl was courageous. With her mother, she walked through picket lines to enter the school. She ignored the hateful things that were yelled at her. She didn’t cry. She kept looking forward and walked through the crowd. She was the only child in the classroom, but her teacher, Mrs. Henry, hugged her and had her sit right by the teacher’s desk as they worked on her lessons every day. It was just the two of them, all year long.
“Guidepost Magazine” quoted Ruby Bridges: “One morning my mother told me that she couldn’t go to school with me. She had to work and to look after my brothers and sister. But she assured me, ‘The marshals are gonna take good care of you, Ruby Nell. Don’t forget, if you get afraid, say your prayers.”
Her teacher looked out of the window and saw Ruby talking as she walked through the protesting crowd. Mrs. Henry asked her about this. Ruby said, “I told my teacher, ‘I wasn’t talking to them. I was praying FOR them. I always prayed in the car on the way to school, but that day, I’d forgotten until I was in the crowd. And so I asked God, ‘Please be with me, and be with those people too, and be good to them, and forgive them because they don’t know what they’re doing.”
A powerful witness from a six-year-old child. Scripture says, “A child shall lead them.” (Isaiah 11:6)