Saturday, March 1, 2008

A Conversation on a Napkin and a Conversation in the Car

Last Saturday El,Mo and I went to the Girls of Grace National Simulcast at our church. El had asked me on Friday afternoon if I would go with her. Before I made time to reserve tickets, I had a phone call offering me three free tickets. I love those surprises! Mo had voiced earlier that she really wasn't into it because she didn't like the idea of watching a live event on a screen. In the age of Podcasts and YouTube, her reasoning mystified me but I decided not to pressure her. I remember having a few teenage opinions myself, and looking back, many of them were just based on feelings and perceptions exaggerated by hormone surges. Ummm, I guess not much has changed there! Anyway, after the phone call, Mo decided to go along with us.

I could say a lot of good things that came from spending a day watching a screen with lots of females (and maybe I will list some later), but I am only going to talk about one of them right now.

First, I must confess. I was passing notes with my friend instead of listening. Not all day, just at the beginning. She wrote me a note on a napkin, and I am going to keep it. I'm going to tuck it away in the Bible that I don't carry around, along with the other notes that came to me just when I needed them. Why is it so special? She wrote something really nice about Mo. I think Mo is pretty awesome (most of the time), but my friend said she is a 'fine girl', and she 'is very special to _______' and 'I treasure their friendship'. Passing notes is fun!

I hope my friend doesn't mind that I told Mo what her friend _______'s mom said about her.

Thursday night Mo and I were in the car talking about To Kill a Mockingbird. She read it in her English class, and they watched the movie. She thinks she is the only one in her class that had ever seen it, and I made some joke about being the only mom who makes their kids watch old movies. She said that a lot of the kids she knows would tell their parents to get lost, or worse, since most kids don't really respect their parents.

Whoa. I'm thinking, "Here is one of those rare and powerful parenting moments....don't blow it....." Well, not consciously, but I did realize that it was a moment.

I said, "Thanks for not being like that!"

She said, "Thanks for teaching me to not be that way and for not allowing me to be that way!"

And I said, "You could be that way right now if you chose to. Thanks for choosing not to be that way."

I really do believe that she has come to the age that she could just throw away all that we have taught her. It was risky, I guess, to point it out to her. But like many other things, I would rather have our kids come to grips with temptation while under our roof than protecting them from all the world's evils and leaving them unprepared when they are on their own.

Mo is a fine girl. I'm glad my friend was willing to write such precious words on a worthless napkin, and I pray that Mo will continue to write it on her precious life story.

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