Anyone who remotely knows me, or even if you don’t know me but read my blog, knows that I will rejoice over the smallest of things when it comes to our son. Those of you who’ve raised, or is raising a child who is a (to put it as sweetly as I know how) a handful understands what I’m talking about.
I remember one time I was in a play and I was sitting around with the cast waiting for practice to start. All the parents were bragging on their children for good grades, and this and that. One lady even told about her daughter going to Disney and trying out to play Pocahontas. I sat there and smiled. After all, I was sincerely happy for them, but I so badly wanted to chime in on the conversation. Everyone knows its not like me not to participate. Finally I spoke up. “Our son lost weight in jail!” I proudly proclaimed. After the moment of silence and blank stares, laughter erupted. Hey, I take what I can get!
On a more recent note, I must brag on Tucker again. He’s been moved, once again to a new facility called the Alabama Therapeutic Educational Facility. It’s what you’d call a re-entry type prison. They have rooms instead of cells. They have classes all day, and try to get them ready to be back in society.
Since he’s been there he hasn’t been calling me as much, and when he would call, it was from a cel phone; which concerned me because they’re not supposed to have them. I was so worried about him because, when I spoke with him Christmas Day, he seemed so down and said he didn’t like it in there. I have to admit, there are times my mind starts to wander, and I start thinking about all the horrible things that can happen in prisons. I was scared that maybe someone was being mean to him or something.
I text his buddy, who had spoken with him, and asked him what he thought. He told me that they used a different phone system that was way more expensive and that Tuck didn’t want us to have to spend so much money. I thought that was sweet coming from the son who used to wipe out our change bucket (of silver not pennies) on a regular basis.
The next time Tuck called from the cel phone, I assured him that we didn’t mind paying. I told him I’d rather pay than for him to break the rules. He tried to assure me it was ok, that it was a lot cheaper this way, and that if I’d just go buy a card for the phone he could call more. He just about had me convinced. Then I thought about the example I’d be setting if I did that, and the fact that bending rules, or thinking rules didn’t apply to him was why he was in this predicament in the first place. There’s no such thing as being a tad disobedient. You’re either disobedient or you’re not.
I told him I’d talk to his dad and see what he said, and of course Steve was in complete agreement with me. I won’t be buying a phone card. I’ll be setting an example for our son about how God blesses those who live their lives with integrity, and how, even if we think a particular rule is unnecessary, we still have to follow them. Hopefully he’ll accept what I say without a fight, but even if he doesn’t; in the long run, he’ll have more respect for us, as parents, but most importantly, he’ll respect us as Christians.
Hopefully he’ll see that we want to do what’s right, not because we think we’re better than him or that we’re punishing him, but because we love The Lord. That’s what’s important!
That is the way we should live, because God’s grace that can save everyone has come. It teaches us not to live against God nor to do the evil things the world wants to do. Instead, that grace teaches us to live in the present age in a wise and right way and in a way that shows we serve God. Titus 2:11-12