My Dear Son

Don’t drink too much wine, for many evils lie along that path;
be filled instead with the Holy Spirit and controlled by Him.
Ephesians 5:18 TLB

My Dear Son,

22 years ago you entered our lives, and changed us – almost completely. We certainly have never slept the same as before you arrived. It’s great that you could get a night out to celebrate; you’re still young enough that each new year is an exciting thing. Your Mother and I party much more moderately these days. Not surprising, considering our age. Maybe we all calm down as we mature. I don’t know.

I had hoped you would return home a little sooner than 3am, but we did get some extra time with our grandson, even if he slept through most of it. He’s precious to us, for certain. Being around him takes us way back to when we were new parents, only now it’s like old hat. (You should have seen your mom get him right back to sleep when he fussily woke himself.) Of course, the bonus for us is that we can hand him back to you and go home to peace, quiet, and a tidy living room.

Meanwhile, today we’ll be ok; we’ve gone to work short on sleep many, many times – and we have experience getting through the next day with the kind of hangover you must have, too. You really looked miserable, as I’m sure you know. But I’ll spare you the details.

I am impressed that you made it to work this morning, just a little late. I’ll bet, though, that you’re “feeling it” all the way into tomorrow. And I accept that this probably won’t be the last time you have to suffer like this. It is indeed amazing how we human beings can put ourselves through so much pain in order to have a few moments of what we think are happiness.

Yes, we were much like you were last night, during the years you were growing up. I think you probably remember. Our crowd were all heavy drinkers. We were very irresponsible parents. I’m so glad you make sure to have a designated driver.

Son, I can’t tell you not to do what I did, but I hope and pray that you learn faster than I. It took me 3+ decades to realize that the morning after is never worth that kind of night before, ever. I said you changed us almost completely. We didn’t figure it out right away. But eight years ago, Christ found me and He changed me completely from the inside out.

It was a slow process – I stopped drinking every day, but I still lived for the buzz from shots of Sambuca with your uncle and grandfather. But it’s now been four years since I’ve had any alcohol at all – your mother’s been sober even longer. And I can tell you, we don’t miss it – at  all. Sometimes, we are entertained watching others get loud and silly. But we were sad for you.

Anyway, I hope having a son yourself has a quick impact on you. I pray you live with moderation in all things, and get back to reading your Bible, especially the parts that teach about the good ways to live and love.

Blessings,

Your Dad

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