Leighton’s ‘back to school’ letter to his grandchildren was recently published by The Charlotte Observer. Here, it is reprinted:
Your “Gagi” is a little bleary-eyed from staying up late watching the Olympics the last few weeks.
But now I am watching as you begin this work- and school-year. And each of you has your own race to run.
What we saw in the Olympics – medals – but thousand who were there just for the joy of competing.
Did you know there are two places in the Bible that compare life to running a race? (Perhaps Paul was thinking of the ancient Olympics in Greece).
So you have a “race set before you” to run this year. What is that race? And how are you going to run it? My grandfatherly advice: Stop. Look. Listen.
Stop to ask what race you have to run. Look at who you are, what gifts God has given you, who is in your life to help. And listen. Listen to the “still small voice of God’” promising to be with you to help and guide.
As I look at you I see each of you has your own race.
Christine. Beauty and determination. You can be counted on to do your work well. As you do your job and consider grad school, open up your heart to love, and be loved.
Ben, this year you are set to finish your race at UNC-Charlotte. I have seen in you courage to recover from a terrible motorcycle accident. And I see in you also that your one desire is to serve and care for others. This year may you discern where that will take you.
Anabel. Starting high school! I can hardly believe it. I see in you a beauty, multi-talents, and a joy that draws others to you. You may be drawn in many directions. Stay on course: looking to Jesus daily.Leighton. What a gift you have to sing, to act, what a natural golf swing, what a love for small creatures! I pray your year may be filled with wonder at the great, wide world around.
Leighton. What a gift you have to sing, to act, what a natural golf swing, what a love for small creatures! I pray your year may be filled with wonder at the great, wide world around.
And Graham. You, dear and oldest grandchild, are in the school of life. You work with determination. May you father with patience those two great-grand children of ours, Conner the sunny one, and Kaylynn the feisty one!
I want each of you to know that Mimi and I are watching you with love, and prayer, and sometimes a little trepidation.
Know that we are always here when you need us. And we know that you are in God’s hands.
So, run with patience the race that is set before you this year.
PS: Remember us too. The older we get the more we need you. So come often!