Isaiah’s voice shot from the backseat. From the rearview mirror, I could see that his little palm was pressed flat against the van window.
“It’s House Chicken! Right there!” he yelled. “It’s House Chicken!”
We were driving through one of the tiny towns that dot the Mississippi River. Zay had seen a café, striped awning and baskets of geraniums fresh and bright in the sun. Of course, the little restaurant isn’t called House Chicken. But that’s what Isaiah had to eat one day last summer when Lonny took him out for lunch.
It had been a thick, heavy, sultry Saturday. Logan and Grant were off doing teen stuff. Samuel and Gabriel were with a friend. Only Zay was home with us. I had plenty of writing to do, so that left two guys rattling around.
“Zay,” Lonny said. “Would you like to go out for lunch with me? Just the two of us?”
“Me?” Zay asked. “YES!” He made a mad dash to the backdoor to push his little feet into little blue Crocs.
He returned just a minute later. “Ready! I’m ready!” he said. “Let’s go!” He galloped around the kitchen. His happiness couldn’t be contained.
That day was almost a year ago. But Zay remembers. He not only remembers, but the sight of Mississippi Café’ brings great joy. Visible, expressive, shout-from-the-backseat joy.
As we drove past the café,’ I was reminded of how important it is to pull the boys away from the pack, to share some one-on-one. Time to listen to their hearts. Time to let them feel like they’re the only one in your world. It doesn’t take a lot to fill a boy’s love tank.
It’s not about House Chicken.
It’s about love.
Lord, may our boys always know how much we love them. May they always know how much You love them.