Friday, March 11, 2011

Sharing Rooms

Each of my two sons had their own bedroom - paradise, right?  You get your own space, I get mine.  I don't have to worry about you touching my stuff.  At bedtime, I can listen to the ball game and you can listen to your cd book.  No fusses, no arguing about whose mess this is when Mom says to clean it up.

Well, this week they surprised me.  I got the call (while I was at work): "Dad, we want to share rooms again."  I may have rolled my eyes (don't tell anyone) at first, then postponed the conversation till I got home that evening.

"We just want to be together.  Sometimes it's lonely having your own room."

We talked through the trade-offs: compromising with the music selection, sharing closet space, working out the conflicts, that kind of thing.  Then we jumped right in with furniture moving.  In the context of disassembling bunk beds, I overheard one say to the other, "Let's go put this in our room.  Isn't it nice to say OUR ROOM again?"

My heart is warmed.  My kids are getting it.  Sometimes it really is better to be together.  Sometimes my need to be WITH you should trump my desire to have my own stuff protected.  I'll bet we can work out the other stuff along the way.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

The Bridge Guy

I have become fascinated by, and drawn to, bridges and pictures of bridges. A certain amount of this fascination is architectural and aesthetic, but at the core it's still a functional fascination.

Somebody somewhere decided that these two things must be connected -- two land masses, or two sidewalks, or just two sides of one creek. Could a person drive from Oakland to San Francisco without using bridges? Sure, if he's willing to drive 80 miles of California city traffic! Who's going to do that when the Bay Bridge is only 4.5 miles long?

Or, if getting to Grandmother's house requires going "over the river and through the woods," how exactly am I getting over this river? Jumping? Hang gliding? Scuba diving? (Oh wait, that would be "under the river and through the woods.") I sure hope somebody has built one of those Vermont-style covered bridges!

And again, I'm back to the church. The fractured body of Christ, which somewhere along the way decided that generations don't really belong together. They're so different from one another; let's keep them apart. Teens on one island, grandparents on another. I'm sure we can think of lots of great reasons for this, and I certainly would expect to have some age-specific instruction, but what we seem to end up with is, well, segregation.

Do we not need bridges between the generations? Do we not need wise mentors handing life-tested faith downward? Do we not need the youthful enthusiasm to infect the whole church body, including those wise mentors?

Who will build these bridges?

I'm working on it. Anybody else?