Thinking of our 6’ 4” son as a little boy might seem like a stretch. But Colt was at one time a rough and tumble bundle of energy and cow licks – bruises and scrapes everywhere you looked. As the youngest of four, he was not to be deterred from doing everything his siblings did and more.
We used to tease that part of Colt’s daily wardrobe should include knee pads and a helmet. This kid hardly ever cried either. That was probably good when it came to the pain he endured in his adventures but not so good when you were trying to discipline him and wanted some hint of repentance.
He gave his mother (me) the opportunity to get to know the emergency room staff on a first name basis. By his freshman year of high school, Colt had lost his front teeth twice. Once in a skateboarding accident and once in his own knee during a wrestling match.
Just like every child, Colt went through the process of trying on hats when it came to who he wanted to be when he grew up, but his choices always seemed to center around rescuing and protecting others. It was a soldier when his older brother Cody thought he might go to the Naval Academy so that he could be on the same ship and protect his big brother. At another point, it was a policeman so he could get the bad guys. And his favorite was a fireman so he could keep people safe and, at the same time, run into burning buildings, drive a huge truck and wear cool gear.
Well, this month Colt realized his dream as he graduated from the Phoenix Fire Dept. Academy and is now a full fledged fireman. As with most dreams, it didn’t happen by accident. This kid, who at times showed the motivation of a slug to get his Saturday chores done, set his sights on this dream and went after it deliberately and relentlessly.
Colt spent three summers of his college years fighting forest fires in northern Arizona – a job that paid less than Starbucks and had many more hazards and discomfort. But he loved it. Then when he heard that the Phoenix Fire Dept was going to be hiring after a three year hiring freeze, he decided to jump into the race along with about 6,000 others who had the same dream.
Between spending every weekend for the next two semesters driving down from Northern Arizona University to volunteer at different fire stations, paying for EMT training on his own, and making 600 flashcards on his iPhone to study for the test, God was gracious enough to let him be one of the 45 who were hired by the Phoenix Fire Dept.
It was a God thing and Colt doesn’t take that for granted. Knowing that this dream was achieved because he felt called to this life and wanted it badly enough that he was willing to do all the hard work to get there does something to a mother’s heart.
We’ll talk about all the new things I have to pray about at another time. But I will tell you that the sound of a siren no longer falls on deaf ears. It’s a call to prayer for me because I know that some mothers’ sons and daughters are putting their lives on the line for all of us because of a dream come true for them.
Here’s to little boy wishes and dreams come true,
We are all raising our children to do something significant with their lives and answer the call God has for them. That’s going to take courage on your part and on the part of your child. Homegrown Heroes is a book that will prepare you and inspire you as you begin to grow the seed of courage that God has planted in everyone’s heart.