Parting Words: my open letter to a faithful follower on the path called “Narrow”

Dear Jon,

Well, I it’s no secret to you I’ve written and rewritten this letter to you in my mind over and over again.  And while the original plan was to hand it to you on paper (soaked in tears I’m sure!), I felt you deserved a little–no a lot–more honor than that.  So I’m publishing it on my blog.  Not because I am eloquent with my words  (or that you’ve my favorite or anything crazy like that)…but simply because it’s what I know I’m to do.  So here goes…

Tonight you’re in your college dorm, moved away from Pleasanton for the first time.  I’m guessing you’re a little scared–maybe a lot–excited, nervous, ready…a lot of emotions all in one.  And those of us left back here, well I know how I’m feeling so I can just imagine your mom & dad 🙂  But thankfully we’re all trusting in the One who knew you before you were born, who created you in the womb…remember your Mom’s prayer?  “And I thank you Lord that Johnnea is fearfully and wonderfully made?” (Ps. 139:14).  Tonight I pray that you would “Know that FULL WELL”  Did you know “full well” there is defined as “exceedingly, greatly, very, up to abundance”?

I want to say thank you for so many things…the first of that being your faithful attendance to youth group, to functions we did, etc.  Not just attendance but attendance with enthusiasm and joy.  You have truly been the joy and encouragment every youth worker dreams about having.  You have spurred BJ & I on in our discouragment, wondering if we were making a difference in anyone’s life at all.  Thank you so much for that.

Thank you for being a model of a Christian girl to our daughters—and our son.  Our girls think you hung the moon–thank you for giving merit to that.  Thank you for being modest in your dress, that I never ONCE have had to worry about our girls modeling their styles after yours.  Thank you for being the kind of woman Judah could look up to and hope to marry one day.  Thank you for babysitting them and not just watching them but truly loving them.

Thank you for fun personality.  Thank you for laughing at my jokes.  Thank you for making this 34 year old mom of five feel like she’s still alive and fun!  Thank you for making me feel loved and that my words had value to you.  Thank you for finally realizing purple is IT!

As I’ve watched you journey through high school and have known firsthand that it hasn’t been easy for you, these verses have been one close to my heart for you:

   13 “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. 14 But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.”  Matthew 7:13-14

What an honor is to count you among the “few”. 

You have not caved to peer pressure.  You have not let go of your high standards.  You have not hurt or let others down along the way.  You have shown Christ to those of us who know you and I am so proud of you for that.   

I truly believe God was showing you the narrow road in high school so that you’d know what it looked like now as you are off to college.  Your Mom’s vision of the tennis shoes lines up so right on with that.  You are being sent out, friend.  Sent out to be a bold witness for the one you serve. 

As you go, I’m praying for BRAVERY for you.  All day I haven’t been able to get Nicole Nordeman’s song “Brave” out of my head…and now I know why.  The first words always get me, “The gate is wide, the road is paved in moderation.  The crowd is kind and quick to pull you in”…but there’s nothing like the chorus, ”

So long status quo
I think I just let go
You make me want to be brave
The way it always was
Is no longer good enough
You make me want to be brave

BRAVE

Words can’t tell you how much I’m going to miss seeing your face around here but I’m counting on some sweet quality time of games and laughter when you do come home.  And the fact that your summers will be spent with us overseas–well, I find comfort in that 🙂

I love ya girl…

enjoy the song and the trip down photo memory lane–

aubin 🙂

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4 thoughts on “Parting Words: my open letter to a faithful follower on the path called “Narrow”

  1. Aubin thank you SO much. I love you so much and I am truly grateful to call you my friend. I am humbled by your letter and I can’t begin to thank you enough for everything you have done for me and all the prayers you have said for me. You and BJ have put forth so much effort and shown love to all who attend the youth group. I love you and your family so much and you have always made me feel welcomed and loved as a part of your family! I can’t even begin to write the letter for you that you have just written for me, so I’m sorry but just know that I feel just as thankful to have you in my life. Thank you for the scriptures and the song and especially for the pictures 🙂 I am going to miss you and your family terribly but am looking forward to coming home and sharing what God has been doing in my life. I love you so much!!! Thank you
    -Johnnea

  2. So so true Aubin! Jon is a “great egg”…LOL! Well written as always!!! Enjoy your college years Jon…when you are in your 30’s with kids and a morgage you will look back on those days…I promise!! Even though being an “adult” is awesome and having a family is amazing, the years you spend away at college finding out who you are will always stick with you. Enjoy and have no regrets with all the new things you try!! Be safe!! Mo and Ethan

  3. Speechless and bawling (of course). What an honor for my daughter and truly our whole family. You have touched my heart today and I thank you for it. God has blessed us with wonderful, Godly children and I know they are His, but sometimes I want them back for just a little while, BUT they are so much better off in His arms of mercy! Father, please teach me how to truly leave them at the cross and in your arms!! He has a plan and I know His promise that “the steps of a righteous man are ordered of the Lord!” May His plans and purposes be fulfilled as Johnnea recognizes who she is in Christ Jesus and steps out in Holy boldness to be all He’s called her to be. To God be the glorry!! Thanks again for all of the love, time, laughter, tears,counsel, and prayer that you have poured into my babies!! You are loved!!

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