hello, son10:09 PM
It's mere minutes before the day you are scheduled, albeit not destined, to be born; and though you may be familiar with my voice, we have not spoken--not I to you or otherwise.
Your mother and I have thought about calling you Eli. In the Hebrew, it means "God" or "my God" or "ascension". The Jews, about whom you will come to learn a great deal in the many years I hope you live, did not believe in a heaven or hell as the Christians that followed them do. Rather, their great hope, through a life of sacrifice and righteousness, was not that God would ultimately bless them individually or immediately but that he would bless their children and their children's children.
There is much about this world I wish were different for you. You may not see true Winter in your lifetime. You will certainly find life harder than it was introduced to me. My generation was softly born and cradled with beautiful lies, and our eyes opened too late. Your generation will be harsher, perhaps angry and even bitter against us for the poor condition of the world we have kept for you. Truly, we lived in ignorance.
I do not believe in god or Gods, Allahs or Krishnas, Calvins or Marxes. They are mostly made of phlogiston, burning brightly in artificial air. I do like the notion of the Judaic faith--that our blessings are our future; that our future is our family. I doubt they've that written anywhere or spoken it so vulgarly as I, but it's my notion of their belief. One possible belief--narrowly focused.
That you are of me, and that I get to enjoy you and the fruits of your life is blessing. I anticipate meeting you.
I fancied in my youth that I would die alone and childless, though not perhaps for the reasons you might one day come to expect. Rather, I felt very keenly a connection to this God, about whom the theme of this first letter is becoming tightly woven. I believed then (and still do) in this notion of absolute truth--that right and wrong can be judged, only I then believed they needed a Judge to be so. It seemed to me then that a relationship with this God need be personal and intimate, but I felt nothing. Because I believed in but did not experience this God, for a great while I despaired and thought my own life hopeless; and later when I did come into an experience, my beliefs had gradually changed; and it seems that a great deal of my struggle has been in and around the attempt to meet my beliefs with my experiences.
It has not been to this day a struggle of great success; but, out of despair, I do still hope. Goodness must exist, and Justice must be sought. I don't have perfect answers to the logical problems these two assertions stand upon, but I know it is worth a great deal to believe in these two things.
I look forward to the journey with you.