Boys To Men


Life is a funny thing. One day you’re learning how to walk, and the next you’re teaching your own

children how to do the same. But between those two pillars, there are a million other memories and

experiences that shape and define us as we grow. Some we anticipate before they come, others we

notice as they happen, but on rare occasions it isn’t until after a moment has already come to be that

we realize growth has occurred. Today, one of those sudden realizations caught me by surprise.

Hanging out with the older crew of Aleph boys is always a fun time. Rowdy for sure, but always full of

laughter and a genuine sense of family fellowship. Whether we are surfing at Kitchens, studying for

upcoming exams, or having a discussion on deep faith topics, they never fail to keep the energy levels

high and the volume even higher. That’s what kids do, they play hard, and we’re all pretty okay with

that at Aleph.


But today was different. Today I saw something in these boys that I’ve never seen in them before, and it

instantly brought tears of joy to my eyes (big, manly tears of course :P). For the first time, I no longer

saw them as boys fighting over skateboards or groms so amped on surfing that they’d do just about

anything to get out of doing their homework first. Today I saw how, moment by moment, day by day,

these guys have grown from boys to men. Don’t get me wrong, they still cut jokes in the middle of the

lesson, and they still had to be reminded to clean up the garage at the end of the day, but something

was different, something big.


I noticed the care they had for each other, and the respect they willingly gave to the team. When one of

them approached that imaginary line between having fun and going too far, another would step in and

kindly correct them. They took pride in leading the younger boys down to the beach, and when it was

time to give lessons they genuinely wanted to help them learn. They even carried a certain air about

them that spoke more of men than boys.


Changes like these come at different times for everyone, and they certainly don’t happen overnight. But

sometime between last year and today, our older crew has undergone an incredible transformation.

They’ve gone from being an incredibly amped gaggle of boys, to an air-tight family of Christ-loving young

men. And what a privilege it is to watch it all unfold!


– John Michael Nada

  Aleph Surf Instructor


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