This past week our middle and high school students at school had the opportunity to hear a speaker named Joel Penton. Joel is a former OSU player who was coached by Trussel and is now a speaker through Athletes in Action. He spoke at our church several months ago and did a fantastic job and around that same time a guy lined it up with the schools for him to come in and speak this past week.
(If you are in the position to get a speaker into your local school system Joel would be an excellent guy to consider. )
He went to the schools on Thursday during the day and spoke in an all school assembly and then a guy that travels with him sings a couple songs and they invite them back for a concert that evening at the school. They give the kids tickets and when the kids present the tickets that evening they are given a free book. During the concert is where Joel shares the rest of his story about being a Christian and extends the opportunity to ask Christ to a part of their lives to the kids.
I digress… as I ‘ve mentioned Madeline is now in the middle school so she saw Joel at school. She got her ticket to the concert that night… made plans with friends to go, got on the bus and headed home. When she got home she came straight in asking if she could go to the concert tonight and said she had an extra ticket for Charlie if he wanted to go.
The next part is what cracked me up (not in front of her but inside of me…) She said, “Mom… you wouldn’t believe how many tickets were on the floor of the bus! There were like 5 or 6 tickets laying there… As soon as I got mine I put it in a real safe place because I didn’t want to lose it. I can’t believe they were dropped…”
I loved it. She hadn’t a clue that they were thrown down. It never crossed her mind that someone wouldn’t want to go that night to the concert. I loved the innocence. I know that it will fade all too quickly… (she has also came off the bus saying that the high schoolers say ‘really bad words’. When she used to refer to ‘really bad words’ I never knew if meant butt, fart or hate… unfortunately in this case I already know those are NOT the words they are using.)
There are times I wish I could shield all of them from life. Guard their ears, eyes and mouths… but the reality is I can’t. If I homeschool them, they will hear it, see it, do it at church… (sidenote… I am a fan of homeschooling… I however am not called to homeschooling. I will not say never but I do know it’s not for this season in our lives…)
Anyways… the thing is… I was exposed to those things on the bus, at school and at church BUT I knew there was a safety zone at home and that safety kept me innocent for a while and then provided a safe haven once that innocence was lost and that’s what I hope we can provide for our kids so that they can make wise choices in any situation and circumstance. And if they make unwise choices that like the younger brother in the Bible they will know they can come home…