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The Silent Son

Do you know those parents on Facebook that have three kids, but only share on Facebook about one of them? Maybe it’s the oldest, or the most athletic, or the one most worthy of being homecoming king. There are a few that I see on Facebook like that, and it drives me totally batty. Then I immediately feel guilty because I’m probably as bad as them when it comes to my son. Did you know I have this kid named Dylan? He lives in the shadow of an over-performing big brother, and an attention-demanding little sister. He’s often the one person in our family most easily left out of conversations, because in his own special way…that’s what his schtick  is.

He sits quietly by, letting others get the attention, letting others try everything first, and keeping himself just out of view. Then when you least expect it he’ll say the funniest thing you’ve ever heard, or he’ll share that sarcastic wit he’s been so undoubtably genetically gifted with. His timing as a comedian is nearly impeccable, but his timing as the one who gives the hug when someone most needs it is better. I believe there may not be a more gifted person in the entire world to simply be a friend to others.

He’s my middle-child and second-born, and as of today…he’s the coolest 9 year-old that I know in the entire world.


Jonathan Cliff is married to his wife Starr and they together live out their days with two sons and a daughter. Jonathan serves as one of the Pastors at Grace Community Church in Clarksville, Tennessee; where he works with leaders throughout the city to help develop Christian community that leads to deep and meaningful spiritual friendships. His journey has been an adventurous one, having served in the local church for 15 years in family ministry developing leaders, building environments for kids and students to belong, and encouraging parents to take big spiritual steps with their families.