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Saturday, September 10, 2011

The Tie that Binds

Friday Kathy and I traveled 240 miles to the north Florida town of Jasper.  A state prison is located there in which our son Alton is incarcerated.  He is currently serving (though appealing) a life sentence.  Alton is not our son by birth, but by destiny.  I have known him since he was born September 26, 1980.  We were neighbors in a community that I felt directed by God to move to.  I became acquainted with Alton because his brother Jerome, about nine years his elder, had along with this playmates first befriended me.

Like in the song lyric we turn around only to find years receding fast into the past; Alton and me—our life together—is founded on many shared memories and experiences.  When does mutual commitment begin?  Is it a sudden thing—sometime founded at the outset—or is it more gradually built brick by brick over the years?  Perhaps it is both; perhaps it is neither.  I think the father-son relationship we share rests on holy ground.

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