Please excuse this more personal post. Again.
I had decided earlier this year to write a letter to each member of my family on their birthday, and well, Sunday was my birthday and I planned to write a letter to myself. I can’t help it if my new granddaughter was born Saturday.
I’ve written already this year about my wife and my oldest son. But I think we can get all the way to May before you have to/get to read one of these again. Friday I will return to our regularly scheduled programming. Whatever that is.
58 years, huh? There is so much still to do. So make a list.
Yes, I know you want to write a sonnet using only words derived from Anglo-Saxon, but there are five grandkids now and seven sons and daughters, both your own and the ones they married.
This may require a minivan, since none of them live nearby. Sure, you’ve wanted the jeep wrangler for a long time. But how many will it carry? And the sonnet’s great, but write a book for crying out loud. The money is better.
You want to take your wife to Florence (Italy, not Kentucky) and maybe to a tea garden in India. You certainly want to have tea with her. A lot. Sit on the porch together in the morning with a good book and a cup of tea. Cherish every moment with her.
And slow down so you can make time for others, especially young men who are trying to figure things out. Remember when your Dad died and you had no one to call? Now you are that guy.
This includes your sons and son-in-law first of all. But at the college and the church there are young men in need of mentoring. Listen to them. Ask questions. Don’t talk so much.
As the apostle James said, “let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God.” Teach that. Show them how.
Seriously, you don’t know many young men who can do that. Older men either. Quite frankly you aren’t so good at it yourself, but you seem to be figuring it out. It’s not about you, after all. That much is clear.
So read more. Study more. Memorize more. Then, when they ask, you will have something worthwhile to say. You still have much to learn.
And lay off the carbs and exercise more. You don’t show your love to those who love you if you don’t take care of yourself. Try to die healthy. And to die well.
Learn to be more generous and more grateful. When you get to the end, people shouldn’t be tired of you, mad at you, burdened by you or embarrassed by you. Go back to Psalm 112 again and again.
Be that guy too, the gracious, merciful, righteous, fearless, steady guy who fears the Lord and delights in his commands.
You are not too old to learn.
In fact, you may finally be ready.
P.S. Oscar Wilde said, “Life has been your art. You have set yourself to music. Your days are your sonnets.”
Just think about it.