My turn to speak

*Zack's choice of mentor; she's mine, too* *The troop's gift to Zack* *Mother and son*

We celebrated my son's Eagle Scout Court of Honor on Saturday and it was a fantastic event. I loved hearing the encouraging words of the many Scout dads who participated in the pinning and the pledging that occurred. Our cup runneth over with great families in our Scout troop.

My husband gave a famously long speech; one dad saw the pile of papers John brought up to the podium and whispered to Rex, "I'm timing this!" It turned out to be fourteen minutes long, which opened John up to serious ribbing from friends and family. But think about it: What better use of fourteen minutes than to praise God and your son for the achievement of his Eagle Scout? I loved it.

I decided I wanted to share my speech here as a way of honoring our troop members and my son in a more public forum.

It’s a great pleasure to be here today to honor Zack’s achievement of the rank of Eagle Scout, and to thank the many people who have assisted our family in Scouting. I love that our troop has all of the fathers involved, and I know our family is better for the experiences that John, Zack, Rex and now Brennan are having together. But the achievement of Eagle Scout is much more than a family adventure. It takes many hands working together toward the goal. On an Eagle Scout’s sash are a minimum of twenty-one merit badges, and each of these badges represents the investment of a counselor, whether a parent, summer camp counselor or a member of our community. Thank you to the merit badge counselors who are here today. Many thanks to the hard work of the Troop 401 committee; you are so careful to provide the leadership opportunities and the skill instruction necessary for the advancements from beginning scout to Eagle. I am grateful for your investment in Zack’s life. The home stretch to Eagle Scout, in particular, was an impressive team effort. All of you who helped on Zack’s project at the observatory, gave pep talks to him in the church parking lot, helped in the checking, checking, double checking of the binder, or simply reminded me to keep breathing and not have a heart attack as Zack’s eighteenth birthday approached were a part of the achievement. Thank you.

Now, Zack. Congratulations to you, son. You have worked hard, you have pushed through, and you have achieved your Eagle Scout rank. I am incredibly proud of you. God’s work in your life through scouting has been a beautiful thing to watch. As you have submitted to the discipline of this work, as your rough edges have been smoothed, as your heart has changed to desire God’s best and His glory, you have become a man. May you continue to cling to Him, and may you always remember His faithfulness to you. As He has been faithful on the path to Eagle, so will He be faithful in all of life. I look forward to seeing what the future holds for you, son.
Again, congratulations. I love you.

*Added later: Many thanks to friend David for the pictures.


Quotidian Life said…
Congratulations to Zack and to all the supportive Wheelers! (Do I hear a sigh of relief?)
Anonymous said…
My brother made Eagle Scout when he was 16 or 17, I think... I have NO memory of any kind of shindig for him. I would have been 12 or 13. No wonder I don't remember. :) So glad to see these photos. You guys are awesome.
Anonymous said…
Thanks for sharing your speech, and it is great to see these pictures. I sure wish I could have been there! It sounds like it was a very special time.

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