Have you ever written a letter to someone that doesn’t exist?
I have. Once. I did it just last week for a Bible study assignment. The assignment was to write a letter to your child or someone close to you and share with them what you thought to be the most important thing you wanted them to know. Me being me, it ended up more of a deathbed letter (which was not intentional). However, I thought to myself, “if I had a son and I knew I was going Home, what would I want him to know? What would I want to tell him?” That’s the basic idea. I found it to be a very helpful exercise because it forced me to be concise and direct with what I thought was most important.
So here it is. This is a letter to the son I hope to have some day.
If you’re reading this, I’m probably dead. That’s okay though, because if I am dead, that just means I’m in a place that I cannot even begin to describe. You know that already though, you’ve heard it your entire life. Your dad was not a perfect man by a long shot. He had many faults and many downfalls. My pride and arrogance has always kept me from seeking Christ in the ways that I knew I should. There were many times I put fear of man and selfishness over what I knew to be true and what I knew I should do. You probably know better than most that your dad was a broken man that had a great need for grace and mercy.
It is also my hope that you know that your dad has received the grace and mercy that he desperately needed. It is my hope that you know your dad lived his life with the desire to share the love of Christ with everyone that he came in contact with. It is my hope that you know your dad fought against his pride and selfishness every day. It is my hope that you know your dad had faults, because I don’t want you for one second looking to me as the standard for how to live your life. I want you to look to the One that I looked to, sometimes through very teary-eyes. I want you to look to Christ and the life that He lived on your behalf.
It’s always interesting to think about what your last words will be. Will they be funny, sarcastic, or as bleak as death itself? I’ve thought a lot about this throughout my life and I have often wondered what my last words would be. These are the last words I want you to hear from your dad. There will be times in your life when you fail and fall. There will be times when you don’t think you can move another inch and you feel as if the sanctification process has completely come to a halt. There will be times when the storm is too hard, the waves are too high and life is just too dark. There will be times when you fail your wife and family because of your sin. When these times come, and they most definitely will, I want you to remember one thing...
I want you to remember the Savior that you serve. I want you to remember Christ and what He has done for you. I want you to remember the grace that He has given and the power that can be found through trusting Him. I want you to rely completely on Christ for your salvation and give everything over to Christ. I want you to remember that Christ is both your Savior and your Lord. I want you to remember the Bible stories your dad told you about God’s power and the deep truths of Scripture you were raised with. Above all, remember Christ and strive to live your life for Him and His fame.
Oh, and don’t worry about me. I know there will be times when sadness comes, but I want you to remember that I am now realizing the glory that my hope was in all those years. I look forward to the day when we will be reunited on the other side of Heaven’s gates. We will sing, dance and once again glory in our weakness as we praise the One that gives strength to us both.
I love you Son.