Real Conversations

It never ceases to amaze me how big of a difference between having a conversation with a group of guys, and talking with just one or two of them.

On Monday, during my normal hang-out with the guys, there was a lot of fighting going on outside after school. The police had been VERY active the week before, and on Monday they were just pushing high schoolers from one block to the next. I had talked to the guys earlier, but when I went to meet them, I could neither find them, or get them to answer their phone. I wasn’t sure if I should keep looking, or just give up and call it off.

As I was weighing my options, I noticed an army of police with flashing lights just a few blocks up the street. Somehow I figured that, where there was trouble and a crowd, I might find my guys.

I was right. I ran into two of them a block later, looking for the brother of one of them. I grabbed them and took them away from the action, both to get food and just to get them off the street until things cooled down. Between eating and joking around, we were able to have some real conversations about the fighting, how they and others deal with it, and thoughts on how the police address it.

Tonight, after I was kicked out of the house because of our senior high girls’ group, I went to McDonald’s for some dinner. Yes, I apparently have a long-term death wish. While I was waiting for my food, one of my guys came in, and we got to talk for few minutes about his week, a field trip, Thanksgiving, a guys’ group, and life at his house. All within 5 minutes.

There’s not really a point to this, or a grand moment to tell you about. I just want to say that my guys are pretty smart. They think, they have things to say, they want connection. They don’t always do right, but most of them sure to try. Sometimes it’s easy to lose sight of all that when I’m frustrated with loud and inattentive groups, or my guys getting caught up in stupid things like stolen eggs.

It’s nice to have a reminder occasionally. I kinda need it.

~ by Peter on November 21, 2008.

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