This pastoral passage was first written for LRBC on October 11 2015.
“Dear Child, though you are a great way off from us, you are not out of our minds: I am full of concern for you, often think of you, and often pray for you… Always set God before your eyes, and live in his fear, and seek him every day with all diligence… your life and health, and the eternal salvation of your soul and your all in this life and that which is to come depend on his will and pleasure. The week before last, on Thursday, David died, whom you knew and used to play with, and who used to live at our house. His soul has gone into the eternal world. Whether he was prepared for death, we don’t know. This is a loud call of God to you to prepare for death. You see that they who are young die, as well as those that are old: David was not very much older than you. Remember what Christ said, that you must be born again, or you can never see the kingdom of God. Never give yourself any rest unless you have good evidence that you are converted and become a new creature. We hope God will preserve your life and health… but always remember that life is uncertain; you know not how soon you must die, and therefore you must always be ready…
Your tender and affectionate father, Jonathan Edwards.”
This was written by the 18th century New England pastor and theologian Jonathan Edwards to his ten year old son, who was away from home for a year. I hope this can inspire some of you to a similar pastoral concern for your own loved ones.