At the end of the summer my whole family started watching John Adams the documentary based on David McCullough’s award-winning biography. We thought this would be an educational experience, and since the boys have visited most of the historical sites in the movie, they’d be able to give context to the American Revolution. Plus, family time on the couch? Hello! Perfect.
Except there have been some unintended consequences. For one, even though my friend told me we should skip the tarring and feathering in the first episode, we did not and Nate may be scarred for life. Although he has seen The Avengers and other action movies that contain violence, tarring and feathering is not exactly something Iron Man would do. It’s totally dehumanizing and it’s 100% real. The emotional gravity of a superhero blowing things up is negligible because it’s pretend, and should not to be compared with watching a person being dragged by an angry mob through the streets, then stripped and dipped in steaming tar. Nate’s face drained of all color, and sleeping in his own bed that night was not even an option.
We are still not finished with the whole series, but watched the second to last episode on Wednesday night. It was one of those rare evenings where no one had sports and Daddy was home early. We ate dinner at the table, together, and then we put on Adams. By God’s abundant grace, Sam and Nate both fell asleep early. Because in this particular episode, John Adams disowns his alcoholic son, Charles. Watching Charles beg his dad for mercy is almost unbearable. This time it was little Will who was distraught. I’m pretty sure the act of disowning was new to him. And boy, his sweet little spirit just couldn’t process it. John Adams will not be on his list of favorite presidents, that’s for sure.
But almost nothing is off limits when it comes to my husband’s sense of humor. The man loves to tease. In the middle of this horrific episode, he turned to little Will and said, “When this is over we’ll review those things for which you would be disowned.”
I guess it’s a little bit funny. It’s funny because we would never disown our sons. If they grow up to be drunken, druggie murderers that wouldn’t stop me from loving them and trying to invest in them. Through God’s strength, and by His Holy Spirit, I will never ever ever give up on them.
I have the ability and responsibility to be merciful, because I have received mercy. That’s the story of every person who follows Christ. Not sure how Adams missed that.
May my song be like David’s, “I love the Lord, for he heard my voice; he heard my cry for mercy” (Psalm 116:1).