A lonely old lady lends a room to an orphaned young boy from a gang who transformed her late husband’s treasured home into something nobody could recognize.
“Hello, Mrs. Saunders. Glad to see you,” Adam greeted his mom’s neighbor at the shopping mall. “How is mom? I hope she’s doing fine.”
“Fine? Oh, please don’t ask me,” the woman grinned. “Don’t you know what happened to her house recently? She let a gang member stay with her.”
“What? Jesus Christ, what is wrong with her?” Adam grumbled and stormed out of the shopping mall. He hoped his mom was alright and hurried to her home, only to witness something startling there…
Adam’s 73-year-old widowed mother, Ruth, had been living alone for the past decade. Although he wished she could move in with him, he felt it would not work out. In an attempt to avoid friction between his mother and his wife, Sandra, he moved elsewhere to a bigger house with his wife and kids.
“Oh my God, what happened to our house? I don’t recognize it.” he panted as he slowed down in front of his mother’s house.
It was not that Ruth and Sandra never got along. Adam’s insecurities and busy lifestyle held him torn between his mother’s traditional views and his wife’s modern lifestyle, so he decided they would be better off away from each other.
But as life got busier for Adam, he spent little to no time with his mom. He focused on making more money, and his monthly visits to his mom’s house were reduced to yearly visits and ultimately none.
It had been three years since Adam visited Ruth, who always begged to see him.
“Mom, I told you, right? I have an important business trip. I’m sorry, but I cannot visit you next week,” Adam fumed when Ruth pleaded with him to fix a leakage in her roof.
“Son, it’s been three years, and you always have reasons not to come see me,” she cried. “It’s alright. I just wish to join the grave with your father soon.”
“Oh, come on, mom. Stop your emotional dramas. I don’t have time for all this. I will see you when I find time, alright? Bye….”
Ruth was depressed. She longed to see her grandchildren and her son. But Adam did not give her such privileges and was only money-minded.
Soon enough, Ruth’s life took a different turn when a young gangster named Ethan arrived on her doorstep, pleading for shelter.
“Please, I am telling you the truth. Nobody is willing to rent me a room,” Ethan cried. “Your house is the only one left. Please don’t turn me away, mother.”
“Mother? Did you call me mother?” exclaimed Ruth, shocked and in tears.
“Yes, I did.”
“Alright, come in. But I have a few things to discuss with you first,” she said, taking the stranger inside.
After discussing her deal with him, Ruth allowed Ethan to stay in her house for free. Her neighbors were visibly upset because they were aware of Ethan’s dark past, especially after he landed with a gang. They worried if Ruth had made the wrong decision by letting him in her house.
Around two weeks later, Adam learned of his mom’s heedless decision to let a gang member stay with her and rushed to see her.
“Oh my God, what happened to our house?” He was panting as he slowed down in front of his mother’s house. “I don’t recognize it. Mom, where are you? Mom…Mom…What just happened here? Your house used to be painted blue, but now it’s brown and different.”
Ruth was quick to recognize Adam’s voice. But she was unhappy and was least bothered about answering his loud calls. The mother who yearned to see her son for so long did not feel the same way anymore.
“Adam? What brought you here? Why have you come?” she retorted from the garden.
“Mom, what happened to our house? And I heard you let some gangster in our house…How could you be so careless? Are you out of your mind? He could be a threat!”
Ruth knew what her son was after now. She decided to answer him in silence and gestured for him to follow her inside.
As Adam trailed his mother, he was astonished. A posh new armchair replaced the broken one his mom begged him to fix. The walls were painted fresh and clean. The attic had a new ladder, and the roof was repaired. The kitchen was revamped, and new carpets adorned the living room.
“Mom, did you hire anybody to fix the house? You could’ve told me, and I would have done it for you,” Adam grumbled disappointedly.
“I told you, son, but you never bothered to come, so God sent me a new son to help me and listen to this old mother’s words,” taunted Ruth, pointing to an 18-year-old Ethan at the doorway.
As it turned out, Ethan’s stepdad kicked him out after marrying another woman. His mother had died a year ago, and with nowhere to go, he landed with a gang in town. But mere months later, he realized he was on the wrong track and decided to find work.
Ultimately, he was hired as a loader in a local factory, but everybody turned him down when he was looking for space to rent. That’s when he met Ruth.
After learning of his story, the kind woman offered to rent him a room for free as long as he agreed to be her son. Ethan helped her renovate her house because he was glad he found a loving mother.
“Mom, I am sorry…I’m ashamed of myself,” Adam regretted, holding Ruth’s hand. “Please give me a chance. I will prove that I’m a better son.”
Ruth was not willing to buy her son’s words. Although she was pleased he dropped by, she was not happy.
“Son, get one thing clear. Life is uncertain, and we are only left with one. You may not get another chance to see your old mother tomorrow, but it hurts me to realize that you no longer need me,” Ruth said, tears streaming down her face.
Adam realized his mistake and fell to his knees before his mother, holding her palms in apology.
“Please, mom, forgive me. I will not avoid you anymore. Please forgive me,” he cried. “Give me one last chance, please.”
But the scars he left on Ruth’s heart were too deep that his apologies couldn’t heal them. The heartbroken mother walked away, calling out to another son.
“Ethan, son, please come inside…I made your favorite pie, come in, son,” she said, slamming the door on a disappointed Adam.
What can we learn from this story?
Do not judge someone by their appearance or social status. Adam and his mother’s neighbors were not pleased when she allowed a boy from a gang to live with her. They failed to recognize the boy’s genuine motive and only found fault with him owing to his past.
Honor and respect your parents while they are with you. Ruth constantly begged her son to visit her. But he was too busy with work and avoided her pleas. He did not respect her wishes and took her for granted, only to regret it later when she turned her back on him.
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