There is a magic you forget about when you age. That moment when the whole world shrinks to the what is directly around you. When nothing seems to matter except what your leader has to say. You look around and you see your friends, your peers, and your adult leaders.
In that moment you have it all.
Maybe for you it was a sport. Maybe it was the scouts, an academic club, a church youth group, or if it was a tad later a fraternity or sorority. For my son last week, it was the band. They had an exhibition (a competition without trophies so to speak).
He and 150+ of his school peers worked all day on a performance they have already logged a month of the summer and two months of afternoons working on.
We talk about kids today not wanting to work, not wanting to be outside, not willing to commit to anything, not being respectful, etc... Well, there are 150 + band and color guard students who sat in a parking lot at 9:30pm after 12 hours of working outside in the hottest fall on record. They had a two hour bus ride home and another hour of unpacking the four buses and four, yes four, penske trucks full of equipment. And I did not see a one of them who wanted to be anywhere else.
I am thankful for their band director. He is truly someone who isn't complaining about the rising generation, but building that generation into men and women who can succeed.
I think of the line in the Karate Kid,
"Man who can catch a fly with a chopstick can do anything."
Well, the man who can carry a tuba (ok... a contra...) all day in the hot sun and not forget his music or field marching locations can do anything.
I hope you had your Saturday Night Lights. I hope you had your moment around the bus with your coach, teacher, youth pastor, scoutmaster, or some variation. And I hope you are helping to provide such an opportunity for the next generation.