This is John, age 16. He's kinda cute, isn't he? What can I say about John? Pretty sure he's the tallest of our boys- so far. It's been disputed on several occasions as it's a coveted position, especially when you're the fifth son. He's very thin and so when he walks... I don't know, it just makes me laugh. It's more of a lope than a walk, maybe. Long strides. He spent Black Friday talking to folks in the long lines at Best Buy about God and the Bible. His idea. John has the uncanny ability to push personal discomfort aside and push on with what he wants to do. It's not that he doesn't feel it, he'll confess that his knees were shaking, but he just forges ahead. He wants me to say that the knee-knocking stopped after the third person. I suppose the captive audience was too good an opportunity to resist. He smiles a lot and most people appreciate the guts it takes to go up and initiate a conversation with a total stranger. And he genuinely likes people and that comes across, too. He finds joy in everything. He has a beautiful voice and loves to sing- he can mimic just about any singer you can name. Amazing range. He's a big help around here and easy company. He likes to camp out in cold weather, forge knives, build things, carve, and even sew. He's creative and always busy. He doesn't play video games or watch TV. Maybe a movie once or twice a month. Weird, huh? But I'm not complaining. We just love the stuffing's out of him!
He met his guests by bursting through the curtain in a "straight-jacket." (A turtle neck shirt with the sleeves pinned together in the back.) He was talking to several of his own personalities and finally said he'd go and fetch "the chief.' When he returned, dressed normally with a clipboard in hand, he pulled the curtain down to reveal a gate of PVC bars across the doorway. He explained why they were here and that he had hopes to rehabilitate them so they could return to be productive members of society. If they played nice and didn't spit on anyone they might one day get out. All the names were read as the gate would open and then shut ominously behind them. Yes, he had an insane asylum themed feast. There was a plain white tablecloth on the table- chess, dominoes and cards were the centerpieces. No candles- that would have not been safe! The appetizers were "meds"- consisting of trail mix in little paper dosage cups served on a tray with a side cup of jello. He had a cafeteria style lunch line where he slopped food onto their compartmentalized styrofoam plates. Mashed potatoes, sausage gravy and biscuits. No forks allowed- you might hurt yourself. He had Jones sodas with those little straws that bend. Dessert was chocolate pudding filled crepes with whipped cream and mixed berries. (One of their favorite shows has this guy in a mental hospital and he gets caught in a restricted area. He gets out of the fix by dropping his drawers, reaching for the sky and yelling, "Pudding!" So that was the reason for the pudding-ish dessert.) His gifts were these bouncy balls that are attached to your wrist by a piece of elastic and wristband of nylon and velcro. I had to retire when they started slinging those things around. They are much more skilled, today, than they were yesterday evening. Nothing broken, to date, even with a constant bump-bump bump being heard.
Will read from Malachi chapter 3- "Test Me now in this, says the Lord of hosts, bring the whole offering into the tithe house and see if I do not open the windows of heaven and poor out such a blessing that there will not be room enough to hold it." We need to live that way- don't hold anything back.