In my last post I shared about our son, Jonathan’s graduation and asked you to pray for him as we look to the future. Today I thought I’d post the speech I gave at Jonathan’s graduation.
Jonathan Daniel Diaso
Jonathan I’m encouraged by the verses you chose for your graduation, I Timothy 1:15-17, “The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am the foremost. But I received mercy for this reason, that in me, as the foremost, Jesus Christ might display his perfect patience as an example to those who were to believe in him for eternal life.”
I’m encouraged that you chose these verses, because it speaks of your recognition that you need God’s grace and mercy to grow and make it in life. I’m also encouraged that you desire to share this grace, the gospel of Christ through word and deed.
I would like to affirm your heart’s desire to reach out and love hurting people. I’ve seen in your life that you are very good at loving people, at reaching out to people. You have a knack for reaching out to people on the fringes. People that others often give up on. You love being around friends, and reaching out. You are always asking mom and me if you can go over someone’s house, or have them come to our house.
One of my favorite experiences with you was when we went to Croatia last year. It warmed my heart to observe you reach out to the Croatians. You always had a few young guys around you, and you were laughing, smiling and encouraging them. We had only been there a couple of days, and we were going to go out in the evening, and you asked me if you could invite Mario to join us. Mario just loved you – he called you Jon dude! It was fun to watch, and see your heart to have a good time, but in doing so reach out to new friends like Mario who need Christ. Mario and some of the others we met were familiar with the church and Christ, but not committed to Him.
Another thing that I admire about you is you are one of the hardest working teenagers that I know. It was impressive to your mother and me to see you getting up at 3 and 4 in the morning to go to work over Christmas break. When most teenagers want to play around, and just hang out with friends you were hard at work. Although I must say you always do find time to hang out with friends and have fun!
It was so encouraging to me when Kathie Schwerdt told me she was waiting in the line at Safeway, and she didn’t recognize you, but she was observing you. She said she thought there was something different about you. She saw Christ in you. There was a joy, and you treated people well even when they were difficult. Maybe without realizing it you were being, and you are a witness for Christ, which I think is your heart’s desire.
Jonathan we’ve shared many great moments together on the baseball field, and I’ve loved coaching you and being your dad. I told David last year that one of the fundamentals of baseball is to keep your eye on the ball. And in life one fundamental is to keep your eyes on Christ. Never stray from Christ. More than one well-known theologian has responded when asked what is the greatest truth they have discovered with, “Jesus loves me this I know for the Bible tells me so.” This too speaks of God’s grace, and our need for that grace.
Continue to live in, and depend on God’s grace
- Joyfully share the love of Christ with others
- Work hard as unto the Lord in all you do
My prayer is that God will use you powerfully, and I believe if you continue to do these things God’s grace will shine brightly through you!
People are looking for someone to lead, someone they can follow. I believe the Lord can use you in a powerful way as you exhibit His grace, and lead as a servant leader.
Jonathan I love you and I am proud of you!
David Diaso Sr.