I know this seems a little Back To The Future-ish, but this is a letter from your 37 year old self. No, I’m not writing from a retirement home, 37 is actually not as old as you think. Shocker.
What? No, I promise that you won’t start fading out of your family picture if you read this. Relax. This is just a little friendly advice.
Right now, I know life is kind of crazy for you, trying to figure out where you fit in, wishing you had even a hint of fashion sense.
Right now, I know you’re trying hard to follow God. You’re doing great. It’s ok that you rededicate your life to Him every. single. summer. at church camp. I’m pretty sure God appreciates your enthusiasm.
Right now, I know your quite times are tough but keep reading that Student Life Application Bible. You’re building a foundation.
Right now, If I could tell you just one thing, it would be this, “Follow hard after Jesus. He will never fail you.”
What? I’m being cheesy and cliche?
Right now…you’re being a little sassy to your elders…little missy. But, yeah, I understand. It sounds lame if you don’t know the story…so here’s a sneek peek:
Someday you’re going to do things that you won’t believe.
Someday, you’ll work at a wonderful radio station and it will be your job to attend concerts. You heard me right. You’ll get paid to meet tons of people and be closer to music than you ever dreamed.
You’ll even get to meet Amy Grant. (Plugging my 37 year old ears) Calm down now. No really. I know you’re excited but can you stop screaming, please…?
It will be the most amazing job you could have ever dreamed of having. You’ll love it.
But then you and your husband (!!! Yay, you get married! You landed an incredible one, so ignore all those other boys.) will have to move and you’ll leave your job when you have your first baby. You’ll be sad to go, but it will feel right, because you’re following Jesus.
Someday, for your birthday, your husband will take you to Chicago and show you your mama’s grave. I know she’s not there, but it will mean a lot to you.
Someday, you’ll discover that everytime he goes there on business he checks on her spot, on his hands and knees, in his business clothes, he clears it out. You’ll fall in love with him over and over.
Someday, you’re even going to see a picture of you and your mama together. She was too sick to hold you, but she’s sitting right next to you while you were in your Daddy’s arms. Someone will tell you it was hard for her to take that picture, but it was important to her.
You’ll be 35. You’ll cry.
Speaking of crying, you’re going to see that picture because you’re going to meet your mother’s family. You’ll even go to the Philippines! They’ll travel from all over the country…just to meet you. They miss her too.
They’ll show you pictures of family reunions. They always have a big banner with the family tree on it. You’ll see your name and your brothers’ name on every one.
They never knew you, but they never forgot you. You were known.
You’ll cry. They’ll cry.
You’ll get to go because you followed Jesus. You gave up much of what you loved to do and He gave you something unexpected and infinitely better. He’s kind of like that.
Follow hard after Him. He will never fail you.
Someday, I know this is hard for you to believe right now, but someday…you’re going to love Mother’s Day.
Someday, you’ll sit on your couch, nearly unable to breathe because everyone under 4’ 5" wants to be as close to you as humanly possible while you read to them like Grandma read to you. And you’ll be blissfully happy. And glad you followed Jesus, because these little people are following you.
I know kids aren’t necessarily your thing right now. I know you’d rather play professional tennis or be Amy Grant’s backup singer/guitarist/best friend, but anyone can do those things.
Someday, you’ll be someone’s everything. Actually, three little people’s everything, but don’t freak out about the number. They come one at a time.
Someday, you’ll play tennis with your youngest daughter and listen to your oldest daughter write worship songs.
Someday, your son will melt your heart with one look from his blue eyes and his passionate mama love songs.
Someday, you’ll realize that Prom Queen is a low goal. Beauty is fleeting and popularity is fickle.
Someday, you’ll realize that the only things that will be remembered are the lives you loved.
Right now, listen to your youth pastor. He knows what he’s talking about.
Right now, hug Grandma tight, because someday you’re really gonna miss her.
Right now, follow hard after Jesus. He will never fail you.
All the things that seem wrong right now, He’ll make right. He’ll make the ugly… beautiful. He’ll make the painful… powerful.
Nothing you’ve experienced has been wasted, it’s just waiting to bloom.
And don’t worry that you never really figured out that whole “tight rolled” jean thing. Someday? it will make a great story.
My friend Emily Freeman invited me to write this letter to my teenage self. Her newest book, for teenagers, is called Graceful and it released this week. It’s wonderful. I can’t wait to share it with my girls in a few years. Such wisdom.
If you have a teen girl in your life, I highly recommend it. Emily is one of my favorite writers. Her words inspire.
I think the promo video for the book brilliant. Enjoy:
RSS and email subscriber, click here to see the video.
I have 2 copies of Emily’s book to give away today! To enter to win, just click here to leave a comment and tell us one thing you wish you could tell your teenage self. I’ll select the winners next week.Leave a Comment