Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Cub Scouts

I've had this post in my drafts for a loooooooooooooong time. Just sitting here. Full of pictures but empty of words. I haven't known exactly what I want to say about these cub scouts.

Taking care of these good looking Bears was my calling for a couple of years after we moved into Boulder City.

Week after week we got together and we learned. About knots. About knives. About camping and packing and cooking and building pinewood derby cars.

Our cubmaster was fantastic and every pack meeting was a giant production in which the kids felt love and excitement.

There were jail cells and carnival games and giant life-sized cardboard bears.

The pledge of allegiance and the national anthem taught about patriotism and respect.

And the special ceremonies were always so well put together and, well... special.

Carson always had a wonderful time, and I loved my companion.

And yet I never fully relaxed into the calling. I tried again and again to jump in with my whole heart, and my whole heart would just not cooperate.

I did a whole lot of thinking over the two years about why I felt so reserved and I think it's complicated. But I think it boils down to this one thing: in a church calling, I want to be teaching about Jesus Christ.

And, while scouting is phenomenal for teaching boys how to be men of skills and of strength and of knowledge, it does not teach them how to be men of faith. And if I had to choose between the two for my own boys I would pick faith every time.

But it's not that I don't appreciate the scouting program for what it is.

My boys really do like it.

And I loved being with Carson and his friends.

I just want to make sure that at the end of the day, my boys understand that tying knots and learning to put up a tent are valuable skills that will serve them well over the next many, many years. But that developing the values that the young women get to develop: faith, understanding their diving nature, feeling your individual worth, gaining knowledge, understanding choices and the accountability that comes with them, participating in good works, being full of integrity and virtue... those are the most valuable skills that will serve them well for eternity.