LoveBomb-ing Boys @Ridge

skater drinkin

We headed back to Ridge.  We head up there once a month, fire up our grill, bring cases of Mountain Dew and feed the boys!  They know when we’re coming now.  They expect us.  They’ve even accepted us.  It’s wild because the first time we LoveBomb-ed, they weren’t sure if they could trust us.  We were constantly asked, “Why are you here? Why would you feed us? What’s your angle? What’s the catch?”  We answered back, “To feed you.  We thought you’d be hungry. No angle. No catch.”  We decided consistency was best.  Some LoveBombs we are an afternoon visit or a quick moment.  But, some are long lasting…relational.  With these boys we knew they were used to people not being dependable…not really wanting to be a part of their world.

boys watchin

burger time

One boy said, “My mom won’t even have my skater friends over for dinner.”

This LoveBomb we found a couple of stragglers would wander over and strike up a conversation.  They’d tell us what was going on in their lives.

chillin

liss talking

grillin up some love

One boy, came over and told us his 13 year old sister was pregnant.  He said his mom wanted her to have an abortion.  His sister wanted to keep the baby.  When I asked if he was okay, he shrugged his shoulders and said, “I don’t care.  I don’t even get along with her.”  It was not hard to read past the words and see this kid did care and was worried.  I don’t know if our listening made a huge difference, but maybe for a moment his weight was lightened just a bit.

Word on the street is this skate park is going to be torn down by the county.  I hope that’s not true.  These boys really have made it their home…they are family.  I watched one older boy take time to listen and encourage a younger boy.  It was beautiful to witness.

givin some love

boys talkin

It’s about the listening, I think.

two skaters

On  the outside, these boys look rough, like punks.  It’s easy to dismiss them, or be intimidated by them.  But, they are just boys…misunderstood boys.  I have four boys of my own.  They don’t all communicate well.  But, if you get them in a safe place, like their bedroom, in the car or at their skate park, they feel safe.  Safe enough to talk, to unload.  I’ve found I don’t even need to ask a lot of questions, I just need to be present, patient.  Boys need safety and time to flesh out what they are thinking.  Sometimes the thoughts come out staggered over a number of days…or sometimes rushing, spinning out like a damn has just been unleashed.  Either way, we have to be present, patient.

lil man thinkin

luvbomb

LoveBomb-ing these boys @Ridge never feels like a waste of my time.  In fact, it makes me appreciate time even more.

Join the Conversation!

  1. I *love* this.

  2. You gave me goose bumps. :)

  3. WOW, that is so awesome! They story stirs emotion and imagination. I am already trying to think of someone or someplace to create our own LOVEBomb action! really inspiring work! Thanks for sharing!

  4. Awesome post Kristin! I loved it. I know exactly what you mean and wish sometimes I could do more to reach out to the young kids who feel they don’t have a place, who feel dispossessed. xx

  5. Vernona Joe says:

    Every time I read a post about one of your outings, I feel like I have been LoveBomb-ed, myself.

  6. Kristin says:

    Verona Joe, thank you for that!

  7. This touched my heart. I am a mom of boys and have a soft spot for them. In my opinion current society doesn’t appreciate or understand boys. I really hope they don’t tear down that skate park – it is so important for boys to have a place to go and be physical. My oldest son LOVES going to skateparks and skating with the older more experienced “dudes.” They like to see him out there, too. Trying to do new tricks and keep up with them! It is a beautiful thing.

    Thank you for sharing this post.

  8. What a great ministry! I have three teen/tween boys and getting them to talk usually involves food, getting alone with them and engaging them in an activity that they enjoy. I love what you are doing for those boys!

  9. That is SO awesome. I never thought about heading to the local skate parks to serve kids. I love that idea, and will pray about it. I’m a homeschool mom, but also a youth leader in our church’s youth group, and I know how important (and dicey) connecting with teens can be… especially boys. And to just show up and meet some needs and make some connections like that… so cool! And to call it LoveBomb is just so APPROPRIATE. God bless you as you serve. :)

  10. Wow. Really inspiring.

  11. Love this. I have two sons, and my eyes have been opened since my oldest became a teenager. So many adults dismiss kids who don’t dress, look, or act a certain way as worthless, and won’t give them the time of day, much less listen. I see this all the time, everywhere. In teachers, coaches, any adult. Teens are trying so hard to find their way, and so many of them do just need someone to listen. Bless you for doing this.

  12. kristin, i love this! this is one my husband needs to read.

    awesome!

    angie

  13. I got a catch in my throat, reading this post. It is such a transformative, generative, and dare I say RADICAL idea to just…. Spread Love. Not with an ideological message, just love.

    it is tremendous that you do this, it really is. I have a soft spot for the skater boys too, as I always crushed on them from afar as a teenager.

    For boys to have someone try to understand them, even for an afternoon, is just…. huge.

    LOVE LOVE LOVE THIS POST!!

  14. Lovely gesture! I bet it’s very rewarding for everyone involved!

    Thanks so much for your sweet comments on my blog about my little bun in the oven!

  15. Wow. Human beings amaze me. GREG

  16. Such a wonderful thing you do.

    Why would the county tear it down?

  17. Your words on this article about how these boys look like punks or ruffians (my word. I like it), confused me. These guys just looked like guys to me! In fact, they looked like younger, less kept versions of my husband!

    They look like my friends from college. The attitude of my friends now. The ruffians, the punks, the hard-edged. The freaks, weirdos, and space cadets. They were, and are, all my friends because the exterior is an expression, and when you look at the expression, and talk to the person, you start to realize that this freak/weirdo/punk just sees things so intensely, it’s hard to express to others in words. Or it’s scary to express to others in words because that allows for vulnerability. Something that just can’t be afforded in their situations.

    I learned so much from my “scary” friends than I ever did from my straight-laced group. Their acceptance of my eccentricities helped me come out of my own shell to become the woman I am today. These groups are incredibly important and it would be ridiculous for the county to tear it down.

    That being said… the LOVEBOMB is so amazing and I know that they will always look back on it with gratitude.

  18. Part of our job as Christians is to live so that others see Christ in us; to glorify and spread His love everywhere we can. Your LoveBombs do just that, and whether the recipients of your Love know it or not, they have just been touched by the spirit. What a wonderful gift, for these boys and for your own, to experience both sides of Love. You inspire me!

Trackbacks

  1. […] last year, when we LoveBombed him and his friends at the skatepark, I collected the broken decks.  I have stacks of them under my porch.  We turned some into […]

  2. […] serving and sharing a meal or a morsel with someone you wouldn’t normally. We’ve LoveBombed skaters with bacon cheeseburgers, women with cupcakes, a homeless couple with breakfast sandwiches and […]

  3. […] serving and sharing a meal or a morsel with someone you wouldn’t normally. We’ve LoveBombed skaters with bacon cheeseburgers, women with cupcakes, a homeless couple with breakfast sandwiches and […]

  4. […] chair and enjoy a bite with them, taking a moment to listen and be a friend. We’ve LoveBombed skaters, women in recovery, neighbors and […]

Join the Conversation!

*