Love And Roses – A Time Honored Letter To My Grandfather


1930 Hamilton 992 Railroad Pocket Watch in #2 Case

My 88 year-old living grandfather, Gasper P. LaCiura, wrote and self-published a book at age 78 titled, Love & Roses. I’ve titled this post with the same basic title as a showing of my love and respect for him as his grateful first-born grandson. With his permission, I share my personal letter to honor him below.


On this Christmas eve in 2007, I am writing this letter, Pa Pa, to honor you and tell you how much I love you for being the best grandfather a young boy, and now a grown man, could ever have.

I want to thank you for letting me experience the thrill of driving your boat as a young lad and teaching me that life is a daring adventure to be enjoyed with those you love.

Thank you for the many opening days of shrimp season when you, my dad, and I would diligently prepare for and excitedly anticipate the blessing of a bountiful first drag of the net. Whether we caught the “mother lode” or we forgot to “tie the pocket”, I learned through these shared outdoor experiences how to appreciate the good things of real life and real family.  

Thank you for the many summer weeks and long week-ends at the camp where I learned how to enjoy and discover the simple things of a “Tom Sawyer” life on the bayou. Shooting snakes, catching garfish, and frying fresh catfish for dinner are the boyhood memories that influenced me to stay near to home as a man and offer my children the opportunity for similar storybook adventures in the sportsman paradise of Southeast Louisiana. 

Thank you for giving me my very first car – a classic 1966 mustang – for the price of $1,200, teaching me that nothing in life is free and anything worth having is worth the hard work to achieve it. 

And most importantly, thank you for always being there for me to listen to my dreams, encourage my pursuit of them, and inspire my belief that nothing would be impossible for me with a little bit of faith, hope, and love.

Now that I am a grown man, blessed by God with a family of my own, doing my best to fulfill my commitments and fully live life with convictions of truth and principle in my heart, the time for me to tell you how much you mean to me must not continue to slip away any longer.  Therefore, without any further delay and believing in the principle that “the pen is mightier than the sword” which you taught me, I write this heartfelt letter to honor you. 

While I may not be able to see you or talk with you as often as I’d like, I want you to know that in all my successes and even my failures, nothing means more to me than the gift of your life, love, and laughter that you shared with me throughout your life, helping me become the man of purpose and conviction that I am today.  In the same way that Pa Pa Tony taught you that “your word is your bond”, many of the life principles that you have taught me are as timeless and priceless as the railroad watch you have saved for me to pass on to my first-born son as a timeless family legacy.

In closing, my sincere prayer for you, Pa Pa, as you reflect upon your prosperous and blessed life, is that your personal relationship with our heavenly Father, Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, will grow ever more closely and intimately as each day passes just as I love and know you as the best grandfather a boy and a man could ever have in a lifetime! I love you Pa Pa!

Your grateful grandson,

Gary B.

Merry Christmas and many more Happy New Years!

Love And Roses – A Time Honored Letter To My Grandfather Copyright 2007, Gary J. Borgstede.  You have permission to reprint this personal family letter, in its entirety only, and forward to your colleagues and friends, provided the copyright notice remains part of the reprint and transmission.  All other rights reserved.

No Fear



2 Timothy 1:7 “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.”


In this passage, Paul is writing to encourage Timothy and build up his faith as he leads the church at Ephesus. He exhorts Timothy to stir up the gift of God that is in him [the free gift of the Holy Spirit] by the laying on of his hands and emphasizes to him that God does not give us a spirit of fear.  Instead, God gives us His Spirit of power, of love, and of a sound mind which overcomes any fear from the enemy and empowers us to walk in peace as bold witnesses of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, to the world around us.


As a believer, there will be times when the devil will attack us in our minds with the only weapon he has – fear – because he knows that he can rob, steal, and kill everything that God has for us if we live in fear rather than faith.  When this happens, we must recognize that any such spirit of fear is not of God because God gives us His Spirit of power, love, and sound mind which overcomes any spirit of fear cast toward us by the enemy. 1 John 4:4-5 states, “You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.” We can overcome fear because the Holy Spirit lives in us and He is greater than any illegal trespass of fear by the enemy.  Plus, the simple truth is that fear has no chance at all with us because the Lord loves each of us perfectly and 1 john 4:18 states that perfect love casts out fear.


Heavenly Father, thank You for Your perfect unconditional love for me which casts out all fear. Because You are Jehovah Shalom, the Lord Our Peace, I am thankful to walk in Your peace, peace not as the world can give, but peace that only You can give as my Lord and Savior.  I love You Jesus! Amen!

No Fear Copyright 2010, Gary J. Borgstede.  You have permission to reprint the personal devotion, No Fear, in its entirety only, and forward to your colleagues and friends, provided the copyright notice remains part of the reprint and transmission.  All other rights reserved.

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