To my beloved future brother,
I can’t believe this is the third birthday that has gone by since God laid you on my heart. The love He has given me for you has grown exponentially since that day. I know that you have caused a lot of pain and suffering and heartbreak for a lot of people, and I can’t discount that because it’s very real, but I’m sure you hear about it and think about it constantly – so on your birthday, I want to tell you what a gift you have been to me. Because you were born 22 years ago, I fell in love with Jesus and gave my life to Him. Because you were born 22 years ago, I met my best friend who is one of the closest people to me in the world. She has completely changed my life for the better and makes me a better person every single day. Because you were born 22 years ago, I made incredible brothers and sisters and friends from all over the country and world, many of whom I have talked to or met in person or hope to one day, and several of whom will absolutely be forever friends. Because you were born 22 years ago, I have learned so much about the incredible depth of the love, mercy, and grace of my God. Because you were born 22 years ago, I started a death row ministry and have made a difference in the lives of 20 death row inmates in this country and counting…and I will continue doing that for the rest of my life. There is no knowing how many friends I will get to love and impact before God calls me home. So as much as you made some terrible choices and destroyed many lives, I want you to know that you have been a blessing in mine and that no matter what anyone says, you do have worth and value.
I also want you to know that you have celebrated your 20th, 21st, and 22nd birthdays for a reason. God kept you alive that night for a reason, and He has a purpose and a plan for your life that you and I can’t even begin to see or understand right now – but as long as you are breathing and your heart is beating – you still have the chance to turn your life around and do so much good in the world. Where you once caused death and destruction, you can bring life and hope – and I truly believe that you will. Every birthday that passes, I will thank God for the gift of another year that you can use for growth, for change, and for good.
My wish for you on your birthday is that whenever you are made to feel like unloved and unwanted garbage – that you would instead remember that you were created by the King of the universe in His beautiful image and that you are loved, wanted, and cherished more than you could ever imagine.
So much love from your future sister,