- Originally written Sept. 21, 2014. Still true.Dear Ezra and Lian;
I love your mother. I love both of you.
Ezra, you already know this. You are old enough to know this is true. I have told you many times. Lian, today you are too young to understand what is happening. Most of all this letter is for you to read when you are older. Ezra, when Lian is older please make sure your little sister believes this.
My legal paperwork got filed in court over a week ago. This means that your Mommy and Daddy permanently won’t be living together any more. We haven’t lived together for 16 months, but this makes it official. This doesn’t change anything really for you, but soon your parents will be divorced.
You and others will ask yourselves, like you have asked me in the past; why? Eventually you will meet someone who will tell you something like this; “Sometimes mommies and daddies stop loving one another. That’s why they get divorced.” Don’t ever believe or listen to that. That idea has nothing to do with me and your mother. It’s not true about us. I love your mom with all my heart, but it takes more than love to make a marriage last.
I have tried so hard to make sure that we could all stay together. Now I have to stop holding on to your Mom. It’s really, really difficult, but it’s what your Mom wants. I just have to love her from a distance. The best way I can do that, is to love you as best as I can. You are the apple of my eye. My favour will rest on you as long as I shall live. Just because my marriage is ending does not lessen my love for you. You bear no responsibility for this divorce; not even a little bit. I will provide, protect, lead and embrace you all the more. I’m sure it might get to be too much sometimes. I might hug a little too tightly and forget to let go. When I over-love you, I’m sorry. Please forgive me in advance.
Any time I compare you to your mother, it will be to highlight one of your positive attributes. When I see you, I will always see a little bit of her. That’s a good thing. Your eyes, your nose, your dimples, your easy laugh and smile. They all remind me about the best of your Mom.
My biggest regret about this is that you don’t have more brothers and sisters. If there were twin or triplet versions of you that would make my joy even greater. I love all your mother’s children so much. I will pour my affection on the two of you.
Sometime in the future, you might be feeling bad about yourself. Wherever you are, no matter how old you are, read this letter. Remember that your father loves you and always will.
Dear Ezra and Lian,
Over the Christmas holidays, we slept Christmas Eve in Grandpa’s apartment. He spent a lot of that night awake and crying. He was crying because at the nursing home, Grandma didn’t remember that our names were Tim, Ezra and Lian. It took her 15 minutes to realize that we were her kids and grandkids. I told Grandpa most of the following story. It helped cheer him up and give him a purpose.
“1 As he passed by, he saw a man blind from birth. 2 His disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” 3 Jesus answered, “Neither did this man sin, nor his parents; but, that the works of God might be revealed in him. 4 I must work the works of him who sent me, while it is day. The night is coming, when no one can work. 5 While I am in the world, I am the light of the world.” 6 When he had said this, he spat on the ground, made mud with the saliva, anointed the blind man’s eyes with the mud, 7 and said to him, “Go, wash in the pool of Siloam” (which means “Sent”). So he went away, washed, and came back seeing. 8 The neighbors therefore, and those who saw that he was blind before, said, “Isn’t this he who sat and begged?” 9 Others were saying, “It is he.” Still others were saying, “He looks like him.” He said, “I am he.” 10 They therefore were asking him, “How were your eyes opened?” 11 He answered, “A man called Jesus made mud, anointed my eyes, and said to me, ‘Go to the pool of Siloam, and wash.’ So I went away and washed, and I received sight.”
You are going to ask yourself why does Ezra have autism? What went wrong? Who is to blame? Those are the wrong types of questions based on the wrong types of assumptions. What is the purpose? In this, I pray that the power of God would be revealed. In our weakness, I pray that His strength be revealed. In our sadness, I pray that His joy be revealed. In our emptiness, I pray that the fullness of His sufficiency be revealed. Through the cracks in our flawed lives, I pray that His light would shine through. In our impossible situations, I pray that God’s miracles be revealed. This isn’t just Ezra’s disability, it is an opportunity for God. I’m excited to join Him in whatever He’s going to do. He’s already done so many amazing things in Ezra’s life.
Hopefully, one day you can apply the same thinking to the question “Why did my parents get divorced? In this situation, I pray that the power of God would be revealed. When faced with difficulty of any kind; In this, I pray that the power of God would be revealed.