On inspiration

We have read the loving words of so many people who have expressed that they grieve and lament the loss of our son with us.  We are so grateful for your words.  While sweet words do provide comfort, they also keep the grief fresh.  But the grief may never leave, anyway, so that’s OK.  We will lament the loss of Simon for the rest of our lives on earth.  In Nicholas Wolterstorff’s book, “Lament For A Son,” he says about his son Eric who died, “If he was worth loving, he is worth grieving over.  Grief is existential testimony to the worth of the one loved.  That worth abides.”

One word that comes up quite often in peoples’ messages to us is “inspiration.”  The general theme is that we, or our story, has been inspirational.  There is a lot of power in that word.  But the power of inspiration is only manifested if you are inspired to do something.  You can’t be “inspired” to stay the same.  You can’t be inspired to go back to yawning, stretching, plopping down on your couch and flipping on the TV like you do every day.

Inspiration is only inspiration if it pulls you, unwaveringly, from desire to action.  So if you feel inspired by Simon’s story, or by me and Amy, then try to put a finger on what you are being inspired to do.  Meditate on it.  Ask God to reveal it to you.

Are you inspired to learn how to suffer well?

Are you inspired to change how you value life?

Are you inspired to be vulnerable and open in your most important relationships?

Are you inspired to look at your kids through a more holy lenses - lenses like the father of the prodigal?

Are you inspired to unlearn something, or forgive someone, that keeps you from going back to church?

Are you inspired to no longer think of God as a “senile benevolent grandfather” who wants you to be happy, but instead as a Father who loves you enough to demand everything from you and then want more?

Are you inspired to think of God less as a concept, but more as a real person who desires an intimate relationship with you?

Are you inspired to talk more openly about your faith, and ask the tough questions?

Simon’s life is absolutely inspiring.  But inspiration is not some open-ended adverb that is synonymous with “neat” or “cool.”  Inspiration has to be attached to action or change.  

If Simon’s story truly impacted you enough to think differently, or change something, would you be vulnerable enough to share with us what specifically it is?  Email us at balentinefamilyhome@gmail.com.  Doing this will honor his life, and provide peace to the souls of a couple of grieving parents.

Simon Adam Balentine’s Celebration of Life Service will be on June 14, 2014 at 10:00 AM at Christ Community Church - Brookside Campus (400 W. 67th Street, Kansas City, MO 64113)


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