Remembering A Brilliant Man
Earlier this year, we uncovered a glowing letter of recommendation written for Nathanael after he graduated from the University of Puget Sound in 2000. I remember Professor Dan White very well as I (not N) called him the Great White due to the rigor of his upper level English courses (hopefully he would not mind learning this-- we held him in highest regard!). He was an exceptionally intelligent, challenging, and kind professor who pushed us to think and write far beyond what we thought we could achieve. N and I talked about him often as he was the one to push our critical thinking and writing skills to new levels. He often had me rewrite papers and expected nothing short of Oxford English perfection. You have to be grateful for instructors who care this much about their students' success! Though at the time there were a lot of tears, complaints, and late night carmel machiattos-- again, me, not N. I don't think he ever had to rewrite a paper and he certainly didn't keep odd hours! Professor White, being a kindred genius, was very drawn to Nathanael's outstanding character and intelligence. I always knew someone was normal if they appreciated Nathanael.
I have been saving this letter to share with you all on this day which marks Nathanael's 4th year in heaven. It remains a beautiful testimony to N's wit, gentleness, and depth of mind. Note the date on this letter. A remarkable coincidence! Or perhaps it was never meant to find its purpose as a letter of recommendation-- for N never made it to the M.A.T. program. Instead it serves us better as a memorial to a brilliant man who was to be called Home this very day 15 years later. A tribute to a lad as rare and true as ever there was.
Oh, Lord God, today we thank you for the gift of your servant Nathanael! Some would say he had so much promise, so much to give and so much to do. And yet, Your ways are higher than our ways. You know the days that were ordained for each of us. Before there is a word on our tongue, Oh Jesus, you know it all. We cannot forget the great suffering this sweet, tender and brilliant man endured-- the ways he fought to live and the ways he served and blessed others in the midst of crushing illness-- and how he continues to do so! You saw and felt it all with him and for him. In a glimmer of eternal reality, we can see why You desired to have your beloved son Home by Your side. He now beholds Your salvation face to face, alongside his best friend and beloved mother, Hilary. While we still miss them both like crazy-- for such of their kind are irreplaceable, we can't blame You for calling these precious ones Home to Yourself to be truly healed, freed from all sin and sorrow, and eternally blessed.
We bless You, Lord God, for the lives of our loved ones and all that they meant to us and to You! We thank You for the time we had with them and the time we have to look forward to with them forever. We thank You for eternal Hope in Jesus, Your only begotten Son, who made a way for us when there was no way.
"For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life." John 3:16
From everlasting to everlasting, You alone are God!