Thursday, June 7, 2012

Additional Scout awards

A week ago at our combined Troop/Team/Crew court of honor, I shared a thought that went something like this:
We have just handed out several Scout awards tonight, and I'd like to tell you a little about them. I'll use my own awards as an illustration. I don't do it to brag, but simply to facilitate the thoughts I want to share. 
As a Cub Scout, I went through the process, the same as you. I earned my Bobcat, Wolf, Bear, and Webelos ranks. I also earned my Arrow of Light award. I don't remember a lot about this stage. I don't remember what I had to do to earn these awards and now they don't mean a whole lot to me, but I earned them.

As a Boy Scout, I did the same thing. I went through the ranks from Tenderfoot, to Second Class to First Class. I earned merit badges and worked my way from Star to Life. On my 15th birthday I had my board of review for Eagle (I held it up for everyone to see). This one does mean something to me. I worked hard for it. And I sincerely hope every one of you will earn this one too.
Along with these Scout awards I earned some religious awards associated with Scouts. As a Cub Scout I earned my Faith in God award.
As a Boy Scout, I earned my On My Honor award. this is an award you can earn, too. There are only two requirements: Earn the rank of Star (most of you are already there), and complete one section (Deacon, Teacher, or Priest) from your Duty to God booklet. I really hope you'll earn this one too.
But there is one more Scout award I want to share with you. Some of you (referring to the adults present) may have earned this one, too. Others, I hope, are working toward it. (At this point I held up my missionary name tag--sorry, no picture.)

You may wonder why I refer to my missionary name tag as a Scout award. It may help to know that when I talk about a Scout, I don't simply mean someone who comes to our meetings on Wednesday night or who wears the uniform once in a while. To me, a Scout is not someone who can recite the Scout oath and law, but someone who really lives the Scout oath and law.

Let me put it another way. If you are not living the oath and law; if you aren't doing your best to do your duty to God; if you aren't helping other people all the time; if you aren't trustworthy and loyal and all the rest, then you might as well throw these other awards in the garbage--because that's what they're worth.

Scouting isn't about awards. The awards are nice, but if the values aren't written in your heart, the awards don't mean anything.

But if you are a Scout; if you really do live those values; if you really strive to do your duty to God; if you are providing selfless service to others; if Scouting is written in your heart and not just on your uniform there is another award available to you. I'm still working on it myself. There isn't anything to wear on your uniform but there is a ceremony involved. The presenter comes up to the person who earned the award and says: "Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord." 

1 comment:

  1. Great Scoutmaster (or Venture Advisor in this case) minute! Thanks for sharing it with us.