Archive for April, 2012

3 April 2012

A Letter

Hi dad.

Starting last Monday and until this Sunday, I’m fasting. Drinking just juice and water, praying, meditating, dreaming about you waking up one day and knowing that God is real. It’s been tough, but He reminds me how much I love you and mom, and it gives me the motivation to keep going.

The other night God gave me a vision of you sitting at the kitchen table, saying the words “It’s like I’m living for the first time,” and I knew that you were talking about the fact that your life was transformed because you let God in. I can’t believe that I can even imagine scenes like that in my head. I used to not even be able to pray out loud for you and mom, because it seemed like such a distant possibility that you would ever encounter Him.

A few weeks ago I went to a thing called “Walk Thru The Bible” at Highrock. At the end of the day, the kids walked in to show us what they had learned that day. We stood and cheered for them as they walked up, and their faced beamed as they recited the 77 key words that sum up the old testament, knowing that their parents were watching with pride. As I cheered, my eyes filled up with tears. It seemed so unfair that I don’t get to experience this. Why couldn’t you have been a christian before I was born? Why do these kids get to grow up learning about God and spending Sundays at church? Why was I burdened with this? Why can’t I have a family that prays together? That worships together? I asked these questions to God as I looked at these 5 year old kids with jealousy. Jealous of the kind of Love and Happiness that they get to have while I only got love and happiness.

I know that you love me. I know that mom loves me. I know I had an amazing childhood. There is no question about that. But nevertheless, I had those questions bubbling up inside me.

There’s nothing that I want more than to be able to talk to you about my relationship with God. To really and truly express to you how I live, how I think, how I make decisions. You know me so well, but I hate the fact that I have to hide this giant part of my identity from you.

When I went home last spring break, you and mom told me that you think of me as “Elaine Kim,” not your daughter; that you love me and support me, but ultimately I am my own person. I am so lucky to have parents like you, that offer me this rare and remarkable relationship, but I long for the day that you see me as a child of God.

I try to picture us praying and worshiping together as a family, and it still feels like a distant dream. I am learning to be patient. To be perfectly honest, sometimes I get angry at your stubbornness. I get angry at the fact that you don’t understand Jesus the same way I do, that you make fun of the church, that you think christians are this or that. I get angry, but I love you more than that.

I wish I could actually tell you these words in person. That I could actually send you this letter, but I don’t have the courage. I’m afraid of what you would say, I’m afraid that I wouldn’t have the proper arguments or defenses of this God that I say I believe in. I’m afraid that you’ll say something that tears down my faith, I’m afraid that you’ll just see me as a brainwashed product of the church. I’m afraid that you’ll say that this is just a phase in my life, that I’ll grow out of it. I’m afraid that I’ll feel inadequate because I can’t say the things that miraculously and instantaneously make you a christian.

As I continue this fast, I’m reminded of how much I actually love you and mom. I know that I don’t tell you guys that enough, and I think that I am realizing that I wasn’t actually aware of how much I did love you. I am willing to skip all my meals for two weeks, to fall asleep with my stomach complaining, to give up on my personal indulgences for you. I don’t think that I realized that I could actually love this selflessly. All this is to praise God, and not myself, because I know that I definitely did not go through this or learn these lessons on my own.

Dad, I don’t know how long it will take for us to read this post together and praise God together. I don’t know how long it will be until our next conversation where I get to tell you about my love for God. I don’t know if that day is going to come at the end of this fast, or in 10 years, or maybe even on your death bed. I don’t know, and to be honest, it takes all the hope and faith that I have to not say that I don’t know if that day will ever come. It takes all my hope and faith to actually believe that there will be a day when you and I get to pray and worship together. It takes God to teach me how to even dream of a day when that will be a reality.

I love you. I love our family. We are all so broken, and I want so much for us to be able to come to God together in our brokenness.