Father’s Day. The family room is strewn with clothes folded and set in piles alongside flashlights and bug spray and sunscreen and everything else one needs for a week-long outdoor adventure. Father and son are engaged in last-minute preparations right before leaving to meet a dozen or so other Boy Scouts and leaders heading north to Bear Paw for summer Scout camp.
A wild animal from long ago.
Nick says, “I hope we don’t have tornado warnings AGAIN this year!” The last two years have blown some mighty nasty weather through the camp, forcing hundreds into shelters when sirens sounded. “I hope so too!” I replied. But storm sirens and rain and dirt—the grit and grime of living in the wilderness—this makes for fun stories of rich experience.
And I think about how Scout camp is like life—full of daily living grit and grime in the wilderness—sometimes scary, but always an adventure. And it’s nice to have your dad along. There’s something comforting about having your dad there to experience what you experience, to encourage and support and guide.
Two gritty grizzlies on a high adventure.
Every year, Todd goes to Scout camp with Nick, at least for a couple days of the week. I wonder, when our son is grown and looks back on his childhood, will these weeks be some of his fondest memories? Probably.
But then I think about all the other weeks of the year when Todd walks through the days with our kids—just normal living days that don’t seem so high adventure. These are the days filled with lawn cutting and tractor driving, with listening to daily happenings at the dinner table. These are the days filled with laughter and sometimes lectures, with more prayers unspoken than heard. These days are the down-in-the-trench days were life gets real dirty and sometimes storms swell and redden eyes. Because life can be hard. So many unknowns. Trying to guide others when we often can’t see much beyond our own two feet, often we parents wonder what in the world we’re doing—if we’re doing anything right, or at least ENOUGH right.
My gritty good guy! Love him so!
But it’s not about perfect, this job of parenting. It’s about desire of the heart. Because love covers a multitude of sins, God’s great Word says. Love covers warm like a pure cotton quilt. Love looks past perfect and just does real—ordinary, everyday, gritty good real.
So I said goodbye to father and son. I hugged them tight and kissed them both. And off they went, their week of high adventure about to begin—their life of everyday gritty good well on its way.