Sunday, April 24, 2005

Angels working overtime

“I want to read a Bible like yours” he says at midnight after talking my ear off for an hour.
We’d celebrated Clint’s birthday earlier that evening and he was still pretty wired.
“I don’t want to keep reading that story Bible… I want one with, like, little numbers next to the words. Not a baby Bible – a real one.”
I get out of bed and hunt one down. It had a hard cover, was the new easy-to-read version, Young Explorer’s edition and it had verse and chapter numbers on each page – like a real Bible.
“Here” I say as I pass it to him.
He’s in my bed, with ½ dozen pillows from his room propping him up. In one hand he’s got a pencil and in the other he has my spare pair of Costco reading glasses.
He takes the Bible, opens it to the middle, puts on the glasses and asks, “So. Where should I start?”
“What’s the pencil for?” I ask.
“I’m going to underline. Like you do” he pauses. “What do you underline? Verses that’re good? Verses that make sense? Verses that are meaningful to you?”
“Yeah, something like that.”
“Tell me” he insisted.
“I underline verses that make me feel good. Ones that remind me how much God loves me. And I underline verses that say important truths, ones that I don’t want to forget. And sometimes I just underline verses because I like them.”
“I thought so. I’m going to do that too.”
He looks at the page his Bible is open to and starts to read.
“I don’t know what to do. This doesn’t make sense.”
Well, how about starting at the beginning? In Genesis. That’s where God made the world. Or you can skip to the New testament, and start reading Matthew, that’s where Jesus was born. Or, sometimes, it’s kinda cool to read a Psalm and a Proverb every day. In fact, why don’t you just read one chapter of Proverbs. You’ll find lotsa stuff to underline there.”
We flip him over to Proverbs and he starts to read.
“You’re right. These are good” he says as he underlines verse after verse. Can I check your Bible? Did you underline these same ones?”
Turns out I had, which gave him immense satisfaction.

Finally, sometime just before 2:00 he drifted off, holding my hand and facing my way.
"It's gonna be an ugly Monday morning" I predicted as I rolled over.

Oh how I craved sleep the next day.
And was thankful the kids were going to be with their dad.

Turns out Clint did not go to Mark’s as he had homework to do that could only be completed on his computer in my home.
At midnight I poked my head out of my door and said to him that I was going to sleep, could he lock the door and turn off the lights when he came upstairs? But, he was not there. His computer chair was empty.
“Clint?” I called.
I went downstairs, calling his name. No answer. No son of mine was on the premises.
So I called his cell phone.
“Helllloooo” he answered.
“Where are you?” I asked.
“WALKING? Where?”
"Around WHERE?”
“The neighbourhood.”
“Are you on drugs?”
“Why are you walking around the neighbourhood?”
“I feel like it?”
"Where are you right now?”
"At the town centre.”
“Please come home now.”
“I’m not finished walking yet.”
“I’m tired and wanna go to bed.”
“You can. Good night.”
“It’s not safe for you to be out walking by yourself after midnight.”
“Quit worrying. This is a safe neighbourhood. Nothing ever happens here.”
“Don’t ever do this again. Someone could steal you. Or hurt you. I didn’t even know you weren’t in the house…”
"Whatever. Good night.”

I sat up and waited for him to return.
And to think, when they were babies, all I wanted was for them to grow up so my sleep wouldn’t be interrupted.

By 1:00 he was back and we both were in our own beds.

Sometime later, someone smashed into my Durango on the driveway. At least that’s what it sounded like. But I was too tired to deal with it.
“Not much I can do about it now. It’ll havta wait til the morning” I said to myself as I pulled a pillow on top of my head.

When my alarm went off at 7, I remember my crunched up truck in the driveway so I hopped out of bed to have a peak through the blinds. Oh the relief. No evidence of an accident at all. “Must’ve dreamt that whole thing” I said to myself as I dove back into bed and hit the snooze button.

On Thursday evening, (4 days later) my neighbour was at my door.
“Did you hear a noise the other night?”
“Noooo. I don’t hear much from the family room, it’s at the back of the house…”
“It would’ve been later than that. Around 4:18 am.”
Thinking he was referring to the previous night, I repeated my “Nope. Nothing.”
“My truck was stolen on the other night. From my driveway.”
(Which is inches away from my driveway, both directly under my bedroom window.)
“And as they were screeching back out of my driveway, they hit the other car they stole – their getaway car – which was at the end of your driveway…”
“YES! I did hear that!”
“Did you look? Did you see anything?”
“Uhhh. No…. I was tired. Figured I’d deal with it in the morning…”
“Well, the noise was incredible. All the squealing tires, then the impact when they crashed into each other. All the neighbours were out. Then the police came…”
“Yeah, I was like, really tired…”
We were standing on my driveway and I said, “Why your truck? My Durango doesn’t even get locked every night. And this week, more often than not, the kids have left the rear windows wide open. Crap. Why’d they take your truck? I’m thankful it’s wasn’t mine…but still, how did they choose which vehicle to take?”
“Apparently my truck, even with the club on the steering wheel, is one of the easiest trucks to steal. It’s a popular model.”

Clint is never walking by himself at midnight again.
And my truck is going to get parked back in my garage by the end of next week, no matter what. That blinkin Camero and all those friggin chippies have got to find a new home.

On Friday night at the lake, Drew and I are getting ready for bed. The other kids are staying up to watch a video, but it’s after midnight, and I’m so ready to rest my head on a pillow or three.
“Can you pray tonight mom?” he asks as his head sinks into the pillows beside me.
Together we say the Lord’s prayer, and then I finish up with some requests, say thanks for a bunch of good stuff and yawn as I say “Amen.”
“Uh, mom. You didn’t ask about, you know, the power going out.”
“Every night I ask God to make sure the power doesn’t go out, cuz that scares me. And I ask him to make sure no wind storm happens and that no robber will break in and steal stuff or hurt us.”
“You know Drew, I have a feeling your prayers for safety is what kept our Durango safe on Monday night. Thank you for praying about stuff like that.”
“So, pray mom. Ask God about those things.”
I did.
He took a deep breath and fell asleep.

The next morning, or maybe it was early afternoon, when Clint got up, he told me to check the truck.
“Why? I asked, looking out the window “looks fine to me.”
He’d been sleeping in my parent’s empty room at the end of the hall.
“I heard a truck door open last night at 3 am, so I went downstairs to see what was going on. I looked out the laundry room window and a guy in a white tee-shirt was walking up the stairs. So I turned on the porch light and he ran away. Then I clicked the lock button on the keychain so the truck got locked.
“What? You didn’t come wake me?”
“I thought about it. But…”
“Way to be the man.” I said with pride. 'Weren't you scared?'
"Meh" he asnswered. I think that's code for 'maybe a bit, but not that I'd ever admit it.'

Drew looked at me with his huge brown eyes.
“Good thing we prayed last night, eh?”

Yeah. Good thing.

1 comment:

Christine said...

Just so darned poignant at the beginning with the Bible story. And then the life application for the rest. Good stuff. Your son is right -- he was safe with God watching over him. And so were you -- in your bed.