Letter To A Friend

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Letter to John (based on Matthew 11:1-15)

Dear John,

It was wonderful to see you last week, though hard to witness your suffering. It must be awful being locked in prison, especially when it’s undeserved.

Simon and I hope to visit again soon, but I wanted to write straight away to tell you that we went to Jesus, and we asked him your question:

“Are you really the Messiah, or should we be expecting someone else?”

It’s OK. He wasn’t angry. I know you were worried about that, but I think he understands your doubts. When you’re trapped in the darkness, it’s easy to question what you were sure of in the light. And he knows you’ve given your whole life to telling others about him. It’s only natural to be disappointed that this is the outcome.

He didn’t give a direct answer, but he did ask us to tell you what we’ve seen and heard: the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cured, the deaf hear…

And it’s true – miracles are happening everywhere! I saw one with my own eyes – a woman healed from bleeding she had suffered for twelve whole years! People are even saying he raised a little girl from the dead!

He must be the Messiah. It’s the only reasonable conclusion.

I hope that’s a comfort, to know that you were right, to know that your work had a purpose, but I also know it must be hard to hear of breakthroughs and miracles everywhere else while nothing seems to change in your own situation. I wish I knew why, or that there was something I could do, but I don’t have the answers.

What I do know is Jesus really cares about you. He told us to pass on a message: “God blesses those who do not turn away because of me.” I wish you could have seen the compassion in his eyes. He was close to tears.

What’s more, I’ve just heard from Miriam that after Simon and I left, Jesus went on to tell the crowd how great you are. I thought that would make you smile.

I don’t know how this will end for you, but I am convinced that Jesus is the Messiah, and that somehow everything will be alright in the end.

I will continue to pray for a miracle.

All my love,

Reuben

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I thought I’d share something a bit different today.  The letter above is the entry I submitted for a writing competition – the first one I’ve ever entered!  The challenge was to write a letter to someone going through a difficult time – either real or fictional.  The main challenge for me was keeping it below the maximum word count of 400 words, but this passage about John the Baptist has been one of my favourites for a while and I enjoyed exploring it from a different angle.

********************

Finally I just wanted to let you know that this month has been particularly busy for me with work and other commitments, and it will continue to be busy on and off for the next few weeks.  I may not be able to post or visit quite as often as normal, but I will still be around and keeping up as much as I can!


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44 thoughts on “Letter To A Friend

    1. Thanks, Michele! Yes, the ending of John’s story doesn’t make much sense in itself. We definitely need the hope that the bigger story gives and the promise that even if things don’t turn out well in earthly terms there is hope for eternity!

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Interesting take on the people in the Bible when we imagine their lives, I love doing that. John’s ministry had to decrease for Jesus to begin His. It hurt Jesus, I’m sure, but He continued healing and ministering. It just proves even those closest to Jesus are tempted with doubt, John knew.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Awww, Lesley, this was a GREAT letter! I never looked at that passage from the perspective of one of John’s disciples. I loved, LOVED this. You got me thinking about what John may have been thinking. So, so good.

    You’ll always have grace from my corner of the blogosphere when you can’t post or visit as often. This past year has been extraordinarily busy for me, and I’ve been poor at keeping up some weeks. I’m praying God strengthens and encourages you during your season of busy! Hugs, friend.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. This is so touching, Lesley. I love how you capture the emotion and compassion of Jesus. Also the struggles of John we can identify with – “When you’re trapped in the darkness, it’s easy to question what you were sure of in the light.” Thank you for this encouraging letter. I will love anytime you are around, but no pressure. 🙂 Love and blessings of peace and strength to you!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Lesley, this is so creative, I love it! This jumped out at me, “When you’re trapped in the darkness, it’s easy to question what you were sure of in the light.” So true for all of us. Make sure and post the results of the contest.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Laurie! I didn’t win the competition – not that I expected to as it was my first time and I knew a lot of the other entrants were much more experienced – but I enjoyed writing it!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I love your letter. You opened my eyes to seeing John the Baptist’s story with fresh eyes. You also broadened the view of how Jesus was feeling as well as Rueben. I pray your entry was well-received.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I absolutely love this and the fresh perspective! This passage has so deeply impacted me throughout many trials when I’ve been tempted to be offended! I love your take on it, Lesley! Thanks for this!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Very creative and unorthdoxal way to share biblical truth! I love the fact that it was written for your first writing contest! Small beginnings (length envisaged) are not to be ignored!:) Blessings for your writing ministry!

    Liked by 1 person

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