Dear Rev. Kevin DeYoung,
First, you’ll probably never read this. I’m sure of it, and I’m not offended in the least. Second, I cannot not write a thank you letter, it’d just be too rude for someone to whom you have given so much.
Recently you spoke at Ligonier’s National Conference in Orlando, Post Tenebras Lux: Out of Darkness, Light. You spoke on the absolute, undeniable importance of fleeing sexual immorality and the things of this world. You spoke on culture, John, human sexuality, and on the Movie That Shall Not Be Named.
I loved your talk, I really did. I’ve watched your videos, I’ve read as much of your work as I’ve been able to purchase, wrote my senior thesis on your study and work of the Emergent church, and your blog is my daily blogging bread. It would be accurate to call me a “fangirl". Your talk was nothing short of what your other work has already taught me, and I’m deeply grateful for that.
I didn’t have the time at the book signing at Lig Con to explain well what I am going to say now. I was sweating so much in your line (both times I went through it), and I was too busy praying the whole time for the selfie I wanted so desperately to take with you would turn out well to come up with thought provoking questions to ask you. Ultimately though, I wanted to say thank you, but even that is a little weird to do when you don’t have time to tell the person what you’re thanking them for.
Like I said, I don’t know how to explain it well, so I figured a timeline order would work best. Here it goes.
In this order, I:
Read a DeYoung book —> Found theology —> Found Reformed theology —> found the Heidelberg Catechism —> Dedicated a year to studying your work —> Joined a Reformed Church —> Got baptized in that church —> Found my Reformed Bible college —> Met my husband —> Married my husband —> 2 mo. later, met you.
When I first came across your work, I had no idea what a “reformed” was: the people, the culture, or the doctrine it describes. I just knew, from the moment I read your work, the only thought running through my mind was “he gets it he get it he gets it he gets it.” By “it" of course, I mean King Jesus: His Gospel, His work, and His mission to love and adopt his lost Bride. I remember crying reading your work, as if I had never heard of Jesus and was getting him for the first time. You didn’t Jesus Juke, you didn’t Pharisee me, you didn’t tell me to work more on my devos, or anything like that. You just got Jesus. King Jesus. And wanted me to get Jesus and all my friends to get Jesus, and not just get him but to get him properly. You wanted everyone to get Jesus, and I felt like I was first in line.
In my selfie picture that I tweeted of us, I tweeted with it the single word “Speechless.” I waited 3 long years to hear you speak live and meet you. You are the very first of my many theological heroes, and your work has is many more ways than one deeply impacted my life. But I was speechless not for those reasons, but because I knew from the very moment you walked on stage, it occurred to me, just like it did when I first read your work, that God loved me enough to bring my life entirely full circle.
Of course, I hope to meet you again soon. Thank you for speaking, writing, blogging, and for getting it.
Your #1 Fangirl,
And, in case you ever *do* see this, I was the wife of the of the man in killer red pants. He’s still beaming that you loved them as much as he did.