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My son and I discovered Terry Pratchett’s books together, when he was about eleven years old. He’d be reading on his own and would start to laugh, and then eagerly read the passage aloud to me–and I’d do the same to him! Pratchett’s books became a shared source of delight for us back then, and they still are today.
Before I had my first child, I never really looked forward in anticipation to the future. As I watched my son grow and learn, I began to imagine the world this generation of children would live in. I thought of the children they would have, and of their children. I felt connected to life both before my time and beyond it. Children are our link to future generations that we will never see.
I’m bad at thinking about society. I love to make fun of very small aspects. For instance the privacy rules we have in the States. Where you sign this thing that you’ve never read, and if you ever read it you discover there’s no privacy whatsoever. But I don’t know how to think sociologically, to tell you the truth. My son is a political scientist and my daughter-in-law is a sociologist. I can’t think that way. I am not a good political militant at all. I keep thinking about what the other side must look like.
Find something that you love to do, and find a place that you really like to do it in. I found something I loved to do. Im a mechanical engineer by training, and I loved it. I still do. My son is a nuclear engineer at MIT, a junior, and I get the same vibe from him. Your work has to be compelling. You spend a lot of time doing it.
You are an instrument of God. Don’t leave the instrument sitting in its case, my son. Play! Leave no part of your instrument unexplored. Why settle for ‘Three Blind Mice’ when you can can play the ‘Gloria’? No, not Bach’s ‘Gloria.’ Yours! Your ‘Gloria’ lives within you. The greatest sin is not finding it, ignoring what God made possible in you.