Dear Teen Me,
I know you think because you’re young that it’s weird that you still love things you thought you’d have given up by now, like an imagination, journaling, telling stories. Don’t give up on them. Or your dreams. They are central parts of you.
It’s okay that you want to make meaning out of things, out of life. That will come in handy someday, although don’t forget you’re not in control. Say it again, you don’t hold everything in control. Sometimes things will happen. You’ll want to make meaning out of it. You’ll ask why about 500 times, partly because it’s been your favorite question since you could talk and partly because you like the challenge that somehow, somewhere, you might understand. Don’t worry so much when you don’t understand.
You will have people in your life who help you when you don’t understand. You will have people in your life who understand you, and the need you have at this time to understand. This will help you later when you start to learn a bit more about the One who understands you more than anyone else, even more than you know yourself. He is good, He knows what He’s doing with your life. You can trust Him. He wants to know you personally and show you in a daily, close kind of way that He loves you. You may not know the extent of what this means for you and your life just yet, but you will soon.
There is a lot more to people than meets the eye. Spend a little more time and read a few more pages on those folks that you might want to write off. Laugh more. Keep laughing. Don’t take yourself so seriously. You’ll find laughing is one of the things that helps you most when life is hard, or painful, and keeps you remembering that this crazy, beautiful world and life are full of gifts.
You will grow up to know who your true friends are. It’s okay to let them see you when you don’t look your best. Or when you’re hurting. There will be days like that. It’s good to let them in. It’s okay when you have to leave some friends but many will still remain. God knows your heart for friendship.
Your life thus far is a pure gift, but it's not just about the things you're picturing and thinking about now. I know you played a lot of M.A.S.H. on the school bus. Yes, it was fun, but life doesn’t quite work like that. You can’t predict with the turn of a game what life will be like. It’s better that way, though.
I’m sure you’re not surprised that a decade later that you’re not living in a mansion. However, I'll let you wait to check out the place you never want to move from and stay in for years after college. :)Final words: You're beautiful. You're His beloved. Don't forget that! You'll learn what true beauty is later in life, but for now, think about the truth that you're made in the image of God. Beautiful and beloved. His cherished daughter. Nothing else matters in light of remembering what He says about you.
*So today, I'm linking up with Emily Freeman and others who have written a letter to their teenage self in light of Emily's new book Graceful, for young women (super excited about another book by Emily).