Brandon polished off his bowl of cocoa crunchies and clicked off the TV. He dropped his school papers into Mom’s IN basket. It seemed a ridiculous practice. Did she ever look at them? Doubtful! He half-heartedly considered putting in the “My child is an honor student” bumper sticker but that would be pointless. Like she’s going to tool around in her perfectly detailed Porsche with an “I’m a proud parent” sticker! Right! It might mar the chrome.
A glance at the clock told him that he needed to hurry. He skimmed the note his mom left on the counter.
Order food from Creo’s tonight. I have a dinner meeting.
He tossed the note in the trash. Opened the fridge and completed a quick inventory of its contents. He set the burglar alarm and headed down the street at a near run.
Brandon had become a pretty good cook and he rather enjoyed it. Some evenings, he would set the table with candles and the full treatment. It felt better than scooping dinner out of a cardboard container. Occasionally, Andy’s parents would invite him to dinner. They had a real family meal.
Brandon sprinted the final two blocks before reaching Andy’s house. Then taking the steps two at a time, he landed at the front door. He tapped lightly before entering.
“G’d Mornin’, Brandon” Andy’s mom said as she poured him a glass of juice. “Would you like some oatmeal?”
“No thanks. Juice is fine.” He said taking a seat at the table.
“You’re just in time.”
Sharon, Andy’s foster mom was as warm and personable as they come. She, instantly, put visitors at ease. In fact, it was easy to feel at home with this family. Security oozed from each corner of the house.
Carl, Andy’s foster dad was good-natured. However, he measured out words like depression sugar, he used them sparingly and only when necessary. Now, he sat Bible open and waiting, filling the head of household position securely.
As he began reading from Judges 14, he held the attention of each person seated around the table. “Samson went down to Timnah and saw there a young Philistine woman. When he returned, he said to his father and mother, “I have seen a Philistine woman in Timnah; now get her for me as my wife…” When Carl finished reading the chapter, he asked, “Why do you suppose Samson was bent on rejecting the teachings of his parents? From his insistence on taking a Philistine wife through to the eating honey from the carcass of a lion, he is clearly breaking every rule. These were godly parents. Why the rebellion?”
Silence filled the room as each pondered the question. Andy spoke first, “Maybe, he was spoiled. Just used to getting whatever he wanted.”
“Hmm…” Carl acknowledged nodding.
Brandon spoke hesitantly, “Maybe, he was rejecting the rules not them.”
“What do you mean?” Sharon asked interested.
“Well what if, it was just rules? It’s easy to believe something if it rings true or if it is enforced with conviction. But sometimes, people just follow rules cause they’re scared to do things different. You wonder if they really believe their own values.”
“Good point.” Carl said, “Could be their life didn’t measure up or their faith didn’t shine through.”
“I wish we had more time but if you guys don’t get going your boss is going to have something to say about measuring up and your teachers.” Sharon teased.
“ I don’t think that we have to worry about Brandon measuring up. He made the honor role again.” Andy offered with a sly grin.
“Brandon! That’s wonderful!” Sharon hugged him and added, “Your mom must be really pleased.”
Brandon’s cheeks colored slightly as he nodded.
“Do you have a plan? Doctor, maybe?” Carl asked.
“Something like that. I’m thinking maybe a Dentist. Did you know in Third World Countries people die from nothing more than tooth decay?”
“ Are you considering becoming a Medical Missionary?” Sharon asked obviously impressed.
“Not sure.” Brandon answered.
He tried to picture telling his parents about that idea. The thought made him smile. Just the mention of anything other than business courses would probably propel them into a rant. After all, their plan was for him to be CEO of some Fortune 500 company. Then he too could drive a Porsche; live in a neighborhood with big houses filled by lonely kids. Maybe some value systems need to be rejected. Matter of fact, he was sure of it.