“Hey, Dude Mama.”
The gravelly voice came from a curly haired just about-man ambling into my kitchen with 4 additional of his type following. These scraggly headed teens had been Nathan’s mates, and “Dude Mama” was the name they’d offered me. Far from getting disrespectful, it was a term of endearment, a sign I had won their angsty teenage trust. It was a moniker I embraced with pride.
“Hi, there.” I smiled. “How are you? How about some pizza?”
The crowd of teenagers gathered hungrily about as I pulled two jumbo pizzas out of the oven, the cheese bubbling deliciously on leading. It was a paper-plates evening, with glass bottles of root beer. When entertaining teenagers, at times the aim of consuming healthier ought to be suspended in favor of winning the meals-centered hearts of sixteen-year-old boys. I spent my children’s younger years cautiously feeding them carrots, salads, and entire grains. When the teenage years hit, I shamelessly bribed them with grease, cheese, and ice cream.
The crew piled slices of pizza and grapes (my a single try at healthful meals for the evening) on their plates and bungled out to the back porch. I sat with them for a bit, asking them inquiries about college, sports, dreams, and even venturing momentarily into their romantic lives. I then left them to their personal teenage devices, only popping out later with chocolate chip cookies.
I was generally a bit amazed when the mates of my teenage children opened up to me. It felt like an honor to win the trust of these burgeoning adults. By way of our occasional weekend visits and back-porch talks, I realized they wanted to be talked to and inquired about. This created me believe of my teenage years and the inevitable angst I had felt in expanding awkwardly into young adulthood. I knew how I had longed for grace, for somebody to aid me piece collectively my half-grown heart with out criticism or judgment. And I wanted to relate to these children in a way that spoke grace to them.
Teen years can stretch a parent’s heart. These children are at the edge of adulthood—straining for additional independent friendships, but not completely created in maturity or discretion. I wanted my young children to have freedom, but also security.
The answer to this conundrum to me was obvious—to make our dwelling the finest location to be. The most comfy location to unwind and ask inquiries (any topic fair game). The most exciting hangout. And I got them there by tempting them with an unending stream of scrumptious meals and irresistible treats.
Often I believe that grace is finest skilled by means of greasy pizza and gentle curiosity.
To me, this technique was not only a dwelling philosophy, but a disciple- ship principle place in action—perhaps the most critical a single of all: Discipleship takes place at every single moment along the way—morning, evening, and every single time in amongst.
Discover The Lifegiving Table, right here!