“Happy are people who are humble, because they will inherit the earth.” – Matthew 5:5
Wow! For the third time in eight years I get to make this post, wipe the tears away from the corners of my eyes, and offer my first thoughts about a brand spanking new human being.
That’s right, friends, far and away over in Dresden, Germany, Andrew and Alicia Pashby-Maul are expecting their first child. We couldn’t be more excited, more full of love, and more grateful that this particular baby will have the privilege and good fortune to be blessed with such parents and born into a home so soaked with faithfulness and love.
Made in Deutschland. Like my VW Golf TDi, except powered by love and the very breath of God. I have always appreciated German engineering.
But rather than talk about my new grandchild I think – careful to use non-gender-specific language because they are saving that nugget for later – I’m going to use today’s post to write my first letter to this miracle of God’s purposes.
Volume 3 of The Grandaddy Letters:
Hello, sweet child. My name is Derek, I am your grandfather. This means that once, a very short time ago, your father was my little boy. Look, here is a photograph of us together. Let me tell you something, Andrew is going to be one more wonderful father. And your mama, just look at how beautiful she is, how much she loves your daddy, and how happy she is that you are going to be entrusted to her care.
If you don’t quite understand this already (but I have a suspicion that somehow, deep inside the essence of who you are, you do), you are deeply loved. Your parents, me, your grandmama Rebekah, your other grandparents (Chris and Clark), your aunt Naomi, your auntie Stephanie, your uncles (Craig and Brian), those wonderful cousins (David and Beks) and your great-grandparents too.
What I want you to know is that this love is powerful and full with truth. You see it was born in our understanding, in our knowledge, of the love that first imagined, designed, created, and then introduced you into our lives at this particular moment in history. You, dear Bambino, are not only an intention of God but you are already part of the Creator’s will and purpose.
This is why I say the love that has you in its grasp is powerful. Never forget how strong and how true this love is.
You Belong to the World:
The other thing I want to say to you at this time is that, because of the unique proclivities of your parents, you are not only a dearly loved child of God but also a Citizen of the World. By right you are an American; by birth you are rooted in German soil; by heritage, you have the United Kingdom, Italy, and more; but by choice and intention you belong to the World!
Your parents refer to themselves as Intentionally International. Your father was reading atlases and engaging the whole wide world before even he went to pre-school. Where else would a nice Presbyterian boy from Florida meet a beautiful Presbyterian girl from Michigan but Northern Italy – while she was living in Kiev and he was stationed near Pisa in Livorno? (Read International Love Story covers 3 Continents)
The Future Belongs to You:
Finally (but, believe me, there will be more to come!), Bambino, be brave.
I mean brave in the sense that Jesus said, “Happy are people who are humble, because they will inherit the earth.” You see you cannot be humble unless you first have the strength and the courage and the resources to be humble about.
This is very important. Jesus did not say “blessed are the pitiful,” he said “blessed are the humble.” Humility is knowing where you are strong and then living in a way that channels that strength to serve others in response to your love for God. But to do this you are going to need to be brave.
This way you will not only belong to the world (in the same way that your parents have chosen to live), but the world will belong to you because you serve it in the name of Love.
So, welcome to Earth, most beautiful Bambino. There is much to learn, and so much to be thankful for. I cannot wait to get to know you.
In love, and – always – because of love – your Grandaddy Derek
Derek has published seven books in the past decade (you can find them at https://www.amazon.com/Derek-Maul/e/B001JS9WC4), and there’s always something new in the works.
Before becoming a full-time writer, Derek taught public school in Florida for eighteen years, including cutting-edge work with autistic children. He holds bachelor’s degrees in psychology and education from Stetson University and the University of West Florida.
Derek is active in teaching at his church: adult Sunday school, and a men’s Bible study/spiritual formation group. He enjoys the outdoors, traveling, photography, reading, cooking, playing guitar, and golf.