|My husband made the wooden stand and Love Truth is engraved at the top of stone|
“Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ. For in Him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily.”
—Colossians 2:8,9 NKJV
Going through Joshua’s personal things, I found his cigar box.
Memories flooded to the day Joshua, his dad, and I went to town so Joshua could shop at a cigar store. He bought one cigar, and the clerk gave him an empty cigar box.
Now, my hand trembled as I lifted the lid. Fingers brushed the top layer of objects, all of them precious and significant to Joshua. I dug through it. A wadded paper sat buried on the bottom. My heart quickened. Did I find words to us from him? In bold print Joshua had written “LOVE TRUTH.”
My questions battered me with a frenzy. What does this mean? Where did he get this? Why did he crumple it in his fist? Why did he keep it with his prized possessions? His favorite box? Was it for me, his mother, to find?
I looked in Joshua’s Bible, the one he handed me before he shot himself. I found a sticky note where he marked Colossians 2:8.
Oh, my Lord, I’m on a quest to live out Love Truth. Teach me better Your Word. Grow me spiritually to please and honor You. In Jesus’s holy name, I ask. Amen.
A Mother’s Memories
Joshua loved high-school debate team.
He had always enjoyed a good argument, searching out other people’s ideas to disregard or include them as his own. Debates lit a flame of excitement under Joshua and pushed him to search for truth. Since finding Joshua’s “Love Truth” note, I’ve determined to love truth and to embrace it, seeking God’s Scriptures daily. I will keep watch and ask God’s forgiveness for when I believe a lie.
Lies and truth cannot reside in the same heart.
This is what I believe about the “Love Truth” note: Joshua jotted down the words after reading Colossians 2:8, but later crumbled it in self-disgust.
As Joshua wrote in the good-bye letter to me, he regretted some choices he had made in reckless moments of his youth. He saw himself as a failure, with no hope left. He blamed himself and felt there was no forgiveness.
He believed Satan’s lies.
On Joshua’s gravestone, we asked the carver to inscribe “LOVE TRUTH.”
Dear Father, how can it be? How could this death have happened? To our son? Though I weep and cry out, I know You love me more than I even love myself. In Jesus’s holy name. Amen.
~Your Mother Memories~
~Your Prayer of Praise~
~A Scripture of Encouragement~