It sounded like a good idea at the time my daughter and I talked. Can some friends stay at our house for a week, she asked, just three of them. But there weren’t three, but five, and they’d be staying not just one week but two while they toured the area singing.
It sounded like a good idea at the time my daughter and I talked. She had just finished her first year at Union College in Lincoln, Nebraska, and I wanted her home and would pretty much have agreed to anything.
Can some friends stay at our house for a week, she asked, just three of them. Being a mom who enjoys her kids’ friends, and given that I had a slim chance of ever meeting any of her Nebraska friends, of course I said yes.
More details followed over the next few weeks: they were all guys, they played in a Christian band called The Cause, there weren’t three, but five, and they’d be staying not just one week but two while they toured the area singing.
I am pretty easy going about most things but at this point I felt a bit like I was inviting the fox into the hen house with my three beautiful teenage daughters.
“I hope they like sleeping on the floor and having no hot water,” I told my daughter as I thought of having 10 people trying to coexist in my home for two weeks.
“No problem, they are really laid back,” was not the response I was planning on.
Mind you we did have a chance to meet these young men, albeit briefly, while camping with 900 pathfinder scouts. But having them under your roof is a whole different ballgame (and I’m not just saying that because unfortunately for them they are Green Bay Packers fans.)
They arrived early on a Monday morning at 2:30 a.m. and we did not lay eyes on each other until later that afternoon when I came home to my daughter cooking a mountain of French toast like I’ve never seen before in my home. I ran to the grocery store twice a day for the first few days as we stimulated the economy while trying to adjust to the increase in food consumption that was occurring in our home.
Our homeschool room had been transformed into a command center with computers filling every nook and cranny. Not only do these young men sing, they maintain a MySpace page (www.myspace.com/causeministries) to keep fans updated and post pictures and videos.
While I like to go to bed by 9:30 or 10 p.m. and get up at 6 a.m. with our puppy, I learned that that is not the schedule these young men keep. Sleeping until noon means staying up until 2 or 3 in the morning.
And who knew playing Mario Cart for five hours at night and then deciding at 10 p.m. that catching the 10:30 showing of the new Indiana Jones movie would be a good thing. (Oh, to be young again!)
But these young men impressed me. Not only were they courteous, respectful of us and our home, patient with all manner of children who came through our door to see what was going on, they were really just nice.
They did not get upset when a game of kickball turned to a tackle form of keep away and my husband tackled the drummer, breaking his finger, and requiring a run to the ER.
They did not seem to mind being mothered like when one sliced the back of his heal getting something out of their trailer. I kept pestering him about if it was infected and even bought some hydrogen peroxide to rinse the cut with.
When one was sick with allergies and a cold, he graciously accepted my mini lecture on the fact that he would get well quicker if he went to bed by midnight rather than 2 in the morning; he dutifully followed my advice. Short-sheeted beds, lifelike cut outs of the Crocodile Hunter strategically placed to make them jump, and plastic wrap over their bedroom doorways, pranks that one daughter likes to pull, were met with good-natured laughs and vows of payback.
But what was most impressive is that for all the talk about young people today never taking a stand for anything and never putting their money and time where their mouth is, here, in this group, was a perfect contradiction to that thinking.
These young men believe they are following God’s will in their lives, reaching other young people for him and it is not just an act. I have seen prayers before meals, Bibles opened and being studied in the morning and networking with young fans who flock to them at their concerts.
Their songs speak of struggles that everyone faces and triumphs when God is at their side, of searching and finding a path.
In a word, they are awesome. They are an example of what is good with our young people and are not only ambassadors for their school but for the one who really matters.
So wherever you guys are, if you read this, remember when you come back east, we’ll leave the light on for you.
Paula Vogler is an Easton resident and correspondent who enjoys being technologically challenged and for those of you, like her, who have no clue how to access a MySpace page, you can contact the band via their sponsor at www.ucollege.edu/thecause or by email at email@example.com. You can also see them at their last performance on the East Coast at the Foxboro Seventh-day Adventist Church Friday night, May 30, at 7 p.m.