Dear Jude, my dearest joy, how easy it is to get lost in an afternoon of discovering the world with you. How could your intensity and curiosity not render the whole world new for me too? I treasure every moment I get to spend watching you unfold
Dear Jude, forgiving isn’t easy. And the world has created this arena in which he who caves first has lost. There are many wars and races in life, son. Forgiveness isn’t one of them. The heart of God towards us is one of forgiveness. We have to lay down our pride to truly accept and understand the measure of love and grace in His forgiveness. Then we must extend it ourselves. It is necessary for survival, my love, and for growth. And for love. And this is love: that you forgive. In forgiving, understand the promise is to release the wrongs behind, the wrongs present and the ones to come. A constant state of receiving and extending forgiveness is a part of all relationships, between us and God, between us and each other.
Dear Jude, be aware of your every moment. Don’t lose important time sitting on the sidelines of you own and only life. Go participate in your life. It doesn’t have to be a ‘right time’, or a ‘right moment’; you don’t need the ‘right body’ or the ‘right girl’ to qualify for the lead role in your own life. You are always good enough to aim for your best. God has given you such a spirit of joy and of intelligence and of… gumption. Use them all, my darling boy, use them and just go LIVE
Dear Jude, as much as I wish it weren’t true, life will throw all kind of surprises your way. Some good, some bad, but all of them can change things in some way. For the ones that knock you down flat, my darling, remember this: if you’re strong enough to survive the initial impact, you’re strong enough to survive the recovery &the life that comes after. And you my love, are strong enough.
Dear Jude, for those times when life DOES knock the air out of you and leave you feeling lost and deflated, repeat after me: “Survive today. Figure out the rest tomorrow.” Sometimes that’s all the fight you have left in you. And it’s enough.
Dear Jude, I’ll never really understand why we as humans work so hard to look so cool. There’s nothing wrong with being impressed, surprised or freshly informed, okay my darling? Let life amaze and surprise and delight and dazzle you- even knock the wind out of you sometimes. Feel it, be a part of it…do not live your life for the spectators. When they fade away (and fade away they shall, my love) what will you have left? God has plans for your life…vivid, sparkling plans. Embrace them!
Dear Jude, Lord only knows what media and communication will become by the time you’re a teen or young man. But here’s a lesson that will never change (but might get harder to remember)- Happiness is a shape shifting, ever-moving target that only flirts with us, never commits. “Contentment” however goes the distance. Seek joy, seek contentment, but above all seek God. All else falls into its rightful orbit when God is the centre. ♥
Dear Jude, I wish you could have met Auntie Yvonne. She may not have ever held you in her arms, but she knew you so well. She held you in her heart. She never missed a single photo, Dear Jude note or a chance to ask about you. She was lovely. And she loved you. One day I’ll tell you all about her.