Sunday, July 31, 2005

Sometimes They Surprise Me--P. IV

Maybe this should go in the category "If you look for good, you will find it."

One of the most frustrating things about parenthood is that you're never quite sure that your messages are getting across. My two oldest are going through their "crisis of faith" at the moment: organized religion is "stupid," the Catholic Church has nothing to offer, "I didn't learn a thing in my nine years of Catholic school," the Church is full of hypocrites.

Yeah, yeah, yeah. Fine. I know some of it rebellion; some of it is youth; some of it is heartfelt. While I cannot dictate how they feel, I can, however, remind them of how their actions affect those they live with and, hopefully, care about.

So I've been looking at their actions for clues to their hearts, figuring that might be a better indicator of what values they do have and if those values align at all with what Hubs and I have tried to teach.

Yesterday, DS#1 was going to finish painting the hallway. In the morning, he got a phone call. A friend from high school, who had a liver transplant seven years ago, was hospitalized for jaundice and in the ICU.

"A bunch of us are going to go over and visit him," he told me.

He burned a CD of some stuff he thought his friend would like to listen to and labeled it "Hospital Mix." Then he left.

He got lost trying to find the hospital, but he and two friends made it, eventually. A couple of others from "the gang" also showed up.

"Was he glad to see you?" I asked when DS#1 got home.

"Yeah. They only let two of us at a time in, though."

"How did he like the CD?"

"He didn't listen to it, but he seemed to be happy to have some decent music."

And, so, five or six 20-something kids gave up a Saturday afternoon and evening to visit a friend in the hospital. And my son thought to bring something to help his friend pass the time.

He had done a "corporal work of mercy," a "mitzpah," his Scouting "Good Deed." I am cautiously hopeful that more will come, in God's good time.