Yesterday, December 14, 2017 at roughly 3:00pm, one of the most prolific, influential, and arguably wittiest ambassadors of the gospel passed away. He was not only a dear friend of my family’s, but was also single-handedly responsible for lighting the fire beneath my parents that ultimately manifested in the Veritas you see today. Because of him, Veritas impacts the lives of tens of thousands of children every year. None of this would been possible without him starting the fire of curiosity in my parents’ hearts the day when my father first went to him for advice on how to give his four boys the best education possible.
He was known to most as Dr. R.C. Sproul, Pap (to his family), and of course “R.C.” to his friends. There’s one more name to add: “R.C. & Vesta.” You’re probably thinking, “Wait, Vesta is R.C.’s wife, right?” and you’d be correct. However, to one of my younger brothers, there was, for a time, a childhood confusion. He’d heard us all refer to them so much together that he thought of R.C. as “R.C. & Vesta.”
As children, we never saw them separately; they were always together. They were simply R.C. & Vesta. To us, they were one. “R.C. & Vesta” when they were over for dinner, “R.C. & Vesta” at church on Sunday, “R.C. & Vesta” playing with us as kids, “R.C. & Vesta” on the golf course with my dad, “R.C. & Vesta”...
I wasn’t old enough to really understand this at the time, but our thinking of them as one was exactly what God laid out in Genesis and Jesus reiterated in Mark:
Genesis 2:24 ESV - “Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.”
Mark 10:7-9 NIV - “‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.’ So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.”
R.C. & Vesta exemplified how a marriage should look and feel to others, and I’m grateful for the model they set and especially for all of those childhood memories of them together.
I’m now married to a beautiful woman and loving mother. Like Vesta was to R.C., my Jackie is far more than just my wife: she is my partner; she and I are one. While our names don’t lend themselves to such an easy combination like “R.C. & Vesta,” I hope that one day we have friends who think of us as the same person … as Brandon & Jackie.
R.C., you fought the good fight, you kept the faith, you finished the race. I will miss the R.C. & Vesta that I knew growing up, and look forward to reuniting in His kingdom.
Photo Credit: Ligonier Ministries