This is part of a recent email from a friend of the ministry…
I got this unexpectedly from my 21 year old son. He’s living on his own, doing well by worldly standards. His faith had been largely his family’s faith and I’ve been prayerfully waiting for him to embrace Christ for himself. Proverbs 22:6 has become real to me, mostly that gap between the “training” part and the “when they are old(er)” part. Perhaps we are approaching that older part.
At any rate, I read this and shouted “That’s what it’s about!”. Feeling a real need to high-five with another man who shares my unbridled passion for raising a godly legacy, I thought of you. I know you’ll truly share in my deep joy.
The letter from his son….
I love you.
I’ve been realizing these past few weeks that it’s been years since I told you that. Ordinarily, I’d just leave it to time and circumstances, and I’d tell you eventually, but I’ve had some epiphanies recently that brought this idea to the forefront of my mind.
I’m not sure what happened to me and you between 2005 and 2010. We grew apart, it’s true. I was a headstrong teenager, you were an adult with ideas about how men (not teenagers) should act. I think this was an important part of our lives, and should not be discounted.
When I moved out, our relationship improved to such an amazing degree that I can’t stop talking about it to everyone I meet. We became companions, working our way through the challenges of life – you are now my mentor but also my friend.
I want you to know that you are the person I measure my life against. As I grow, I find myself looking at my father and realizing – I’m becoming just like him. And that is the best thing that’s ever happened to me. I have become strong, intolerant of evil, a lover of all that is good and true. The only reason I have become what I am is because of the way you taught me.
Increasingly often, I will meet someone at work who recognizes my name because of the work you did. Nothing makes me more proud than the opportunity to continue your legacy. Whenever I encounter someone who knew you and knew your work, they are eager to have another Berryman on the team. I can’t even describe how much that means to me.
You’ve been an incredible resource and an excellent example of fatherhood and manhood to me. As I grow up, I want to be more like you. Thank you.
A follow-up message…
Click here to listen to a praise report on what happened when this Dad shared his letter with men he ministers to in a local prison.