The rubber hits the road

Saturday I worked an election. Sunday I got hit by reality of the omg type. A while back I was asked if I’d work with a youth group for the middle schoolers. We finally met on Sunday evening. I had visions of sugar plums, and knew two of the girls involved. BUT!

One of the main reasons we decided to try to reform a youth group in our church that often has no children and no youth in attendence is that one of the members said she was going to have to move her membership if she didn’t have someplace for her granddaughter to attend a youth function. What I didn’t understand was that the granddaughter is what the education system would call BD. Behavior disordered. Holy macaroni, have we got a challenge ahead of us here.

The whole time we were trying to get this going I was agitating for meeting weekly, on the assumption that every other week or every month was just resigning to defeat before you start. Maybe I should reconsider this?

A– who is on the session and chairs the Christian Education committee has said repeatedly that she can only come once a month for Sunday evening. I well know that she’s over extended, and every Sunday evening is very demanding of time. I’ve told her not to worry. But after she came last Sunday and saw the extent of the problem we had, she called and talked to B– the pastor at least twice on Monday. I could not keep my hands out of the food. I don’t recall when I’ve medicated with food so severely. Everyone was surprised, upset, and trying to figure out how to deal with this girl. I’ve certainly done some praying. We only had to deal with her for one hour, her grandmother who is also being treated for cancer has her 24/7. That is a handful to say the least. This is going to require some love! I do not see good things in the future for this girl, but I also believe in miracles. So, God willing we’ll be able to be something positive in her life AND provide a good experience for the other girls we have in our hands.

I believe there is something for M– our problem child. I believe we have something to offer her. I believe we have a great deal to offer the others as well. But will they be driven away by M–’s shenanigans, or will they see her problems and our acceptance of her, if not her behavior as a demonstration of love? We’ll need to find a consistent line of discipline, and a way to enjoy a live wire.

Another picture from the gardens of the Alhambra today. We spent a good deal of time in those gardens. We had a couple hours to wait before we could go into the Alhambra itself. The gardens stretch out at least the lenght of a football field, but it is broken up by walls to separate the areas for different folks. Do the women have a separate outside garden? I don’t know if they were allowed to leave the “house.” But I think there were separate areas for embassadors, and seekers of justice and so on.

The building at the back is an illusion. It’s just a very fancy wall, with a room on top, perhaps.


And a couple of links. My do gooder loves reading things like this account of an opthalmologist in the Congo dealing with primitive clinic conditions and many many eye problems. He walks you through three or four days of his duty tour, and then asks about the ethical questions of serving thus. I thought the money quotes were near the end, but read the whole thing. Daylight’s Mark

My main ethical dilemma I faced is: is substandard medicine worse than no medicine? I don’t want to think about all the violations of sterile technique I encountered and was party to (flies settling down onto the instrument tray just as an example). We had a couple of complications which probably would not have occurred had we had the regular equipment and instruments – one of which was in a monocular patient. The first part of the Hippocratic Oath is to do no harm. Clearly we did some harm. Did we do more good than harm?

Then an article from City Journal which points to a research finding that the researcher is wanting to kill. What cost, multiculturalism? The conclusion absolutely is in accord with my observations of different groups of people interacting. But we’re not supposed to see the obvious if it’s not acceptable.

And last link, an insurance program. Here’s an insurance scam I want to get in on. But I’d have to buy homeowner’s insurance, I suspect. Flood insurance

Did you know there’s a home in Mississippi that has flooded 34 times in 32 years? And each time it has flooded, the federal government, through FEMA’s Federal Flood Insurance Program, has paid the owner’s claim. The house, worth $69,900, has cost the government $663,000 in flood damage claims. That’s almost ten times the home’s worth and averages over $20,000 a year.

And that’s more than enough from this end of the world I’m sure. Hope all is well in your end of the world.

3 Responses to “The rubber hits the road”

  1. deb Says:

    I love that garden. Every now and then I see an appoximation of that fountain in downtown Houston. All I can say is the water jets are like that but nothing else is even remotely similar. That is such a serene place. It lowers my blood pressure just seeing your picture. Mind if I grab a copy?

  2. admin Says:

    grab away

  3. linda Says:

    Good thing you like a challenge. I have had in your face experience already this year with a school bully…and he is 5! And all the explanations from teacher and principal about the lousy home life and all the “redirecting” they are trying to do come to nothing when I see this child pushing and shoving and hitting other kids. I just want to bring him up to face level and yell “no” at him, but of course that’s a resisted impulse. There are ways to build a child’s self esteem without detracting from the others in the group, but Lord knows, I wouldn’t want to put the effort into it that you will be required to do. …..This time, Lord, you gave me a mountain…A mountain too high for me to climb……Good luck getting creative with this one.

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