A letter to my younger self – things I wish I had known back then

As my son and daughter trek their way through early to mid adolescence, I can’t help but remember my own junior high and high school life.  All in all, I had a good youth-hood – much due to the love and diligence of my Godly parents.  But we all know that some things our parents try to teach us – we just don’t get, don’t want to do, or we simply think we have a better way. 

Looking back, I can name some major things I did or didn’t do, and some truths I knew, but didn’t have enough courage (or confidence) to step out in them.  I had to learn the hard way.  So will my children.  But this mother’s heart really really wishes they would just learn by soaking in our wisdom and God’s ways – so that they would avoid some of the foolish things their parents thought and did/didn’t do.

One day during my QT, I was praying for my children and ended up writing a “letter to my younger self” about things I wish I had received to be true back when I was their ages (going into the 8th and 9th grades).   I shared it with a young lady in our church, and I thought I’d share it with you. 

We could all write these letters to ourselves… In fact, If you want to write a letter to your younger self and leave it in the comment section, I’ll repost it  – either on this very blog post or on a new one {because, I don’t know how to do a linky thingy yet}.  We can have a collection of wisdom right here on SmellingCoffee! 😉  I’d love that – and I know it would be a blessing to others, as well. 

I’ll start (it’s pretty short and to the point):
PS: names have been changed to protect the innocent – who weren’t so innocent towards me at the time

Dear Jennifer,

What Debbie, Lisa, and Julie think about you, or even say about you truly doesn’t matter.  It is a big deal now, but one day you’ll see… they end up living lives you would NEVER want to live.  There will always be Debbies, Lisas, and Julies out there.  Sometimes they seem to hold a lot of power and have a loud influential voice.  But YOU, Jennifer, you keep your focus on what and who God has called you to be and do – and run to Him for your value.  You are worth more than you can imagine – to God, to your parents, to others.

(And one day, your Debbies, Lisas, and Julies will realize what mean girls they were – and they will be very sorry that they treated you in that way.  If you will forgive and release them to God on a continual basis during their season of mean-ness, you’ll be free of the hold they seem to have over you.  Some of your mean girls (called frenemies today) might even come back and apologize.  Mine did.)

Swim upstream.  It’s hard.  It’s not popular.  It’s going against the crowd.  You know it’s the right thing to do.  Be courageous enough and call on the help of the Lord to actually be able to do it.  Turn your face to doing ONLY what God wants you to do.  If you do this, God WILL take care of everybody and everything else.  He will… I promise… even if you don’t  think He will – just wait.  He’ll do it.

Don’t worry about what others think about your interactions with those “less popular”.  Be kind and pleasant to everyone.  Years later, you’ll find out how your life was a blessing to people you didn’t consider yourself personally knowing.  Pay attention to and value everyone – not just the popular kids.

Wait on God to provide and work it out… whatever it is: relationships, provisions, needs, and wants.  Don’t spend money you don’t have to get something you won’t even want or enjoy a year later.  Trust me on this.  Neither those Izod and Esprit shirts and those stonewashed Guess jeans, nor that 1984 new car, that boyfriend, nor that mauve and blue decor you just had to have… none of it is in your life today.   Pray about everything – every need and every want.  God will give you what you need and even some of what you want if you will just ask and then wait on Him to provide!  And don’t forget to give God the glory when He does provide for you.  That makes Him happy!

One last thing.  Your parents:  They love you SO much!  They have already navigated their youth-hood.  They made mistakes and learned from them.  They don’t want you to make the same mistakes.  Listen to them, and love them back.

With thankfulness for who you are now, and who you will become in the Lord Jesus,
Your future self,
Jennifer

Do you have anything to say to your younger self you’d like to share?  If so, have at it! 🙂

About SmellingCoffee

I'm a Jesus-loving, husband-loving, family-loving minister's wife and mom to two college kids, making our home and serving our Lord in the Mississippi Delta. I study, teach, speak, and write for the greatest Boss in the universe. "Faith, Family, Food, Fun, and Living Life brewed in the fragrance of the knowledge of Jesus Christ in every place": That's what you'll find at SmellingCoffee.com

Comments

  1. Smelling Coffee says:

    Thanks so much, Jackie~ I sure do wish I had known these things back then – and I'm praying that my daughter will listen better than I did 😉

    Jennifer

  2. Empty Nest Full Life says:

    Everything you have written is so true! If only we could have grasped those things when we were younger. I have a niece that really needs to do this very thing. I hope to be able to share some wisdom with her to encourage her where she is right now. You are always a blessing! Jackie