Letter to my 18 year old self

Springtime 130_edited-1

Hey mahlove.

Do you have a few minutes? Take a deep breath. Take a few. Settle your heart. Why are you in a hurry?

You have time.

I know you are anxious to be on your way right now. You feel ready for all the pieces to fall into place so that life can start. And you might be ready. I know this isn’t what you want to hear, but be patient. You have a lot of life to live. It doesn’t have to happen all at once.

Do not waste time.

Just because you have time doesn’t mean you should let it pass you by waiting for all of the “missing pieces” to fall into place. You are waiting on love, waiting on adventure and waiting on “life as it should be” to come in and sweep you off your feet. But don’t take “waiting on the Lord” literally. You want to learn photography? Pick up the camera. You want to travel? Go! Don’t wait for anyone to do it with you. You might find you enjoy your own company. Start living. Love and adventure will find you in ways you can’t anticipate along the way.

Do not be afraid to dream.

You are afraid to dream because you don’t want to be disappointed. You don’t want to dream outside of the will of God. Bekah, listen to me. He gave you that wild imagination. He gave you the vision. You won’t be disappointed as often as you think – rather your dreams will change. That’s okay. It doesn’t mean you didn’t hear God. Hold your dreams loosely. You will know the sweetest freedom in understanding that every dream has a season. Let them go when you need to, but keep your hands open and learn to recognize when new ones are given. Embrace your dreaming heart. Let yourself hope.

Heartbreak does not make you a failure.

Despite what you have learned, being disappointed and/or brokenhearted does not mean that you have done something wrong. You have not somehow ruined the will of God for your life. It doesn’t mean that you “didn’t guard your heart well enough.” Heartbreak is a part of growing up. Through it you will learn so much about yourself, what you need and even what you want {it’s okay to want some things}. Lean into heartbreak — you will be glad for it.

Your heart and emotions are not dangerous.

I know you believe your heart is deceitful and your emotions can’t be trusted. Let me give you something to think about: They are being redeemed, just like every other part of you. They are not excluded when you are made new in Christ. We have an enemy that deceives us and he will use our hearts to do it, but that is why God gave us His spirit to dwell. The law says your heart is deceitful. You are not under the law. Your emotions are good, even healthy. God gave them to you and through them you will know His heart. You will feel His compassion, justice, joy and many other things through your emotions. There is nothing to fear because He is Lord of you and He is making all of you new

You don’t know it now, but He delights in you.

Your Heavenly Father smiles on you. Take a moment and reflect on that. Don’t dismiss it. Silence the arguments in your head explaining it away, convincing you it couldn’t possibly be true. You are spending so much energy trying to please Him – take a moment to delight in Him. Let him love you as you are, rather than arguing that you are not enough, not “as you should be.” You are covered by His grace and He sees you as beautiful. If you let Him love you, loving Him in return and obeying Him will not only be easier, it will be infinitely sweeter.

I could warn you of pitfalls or even people to avoid, but then what stories would you have to tell? There will be struggle, and pain, and humility, and deep, abiding joy. Do not be timid. Embrace life in all of its abundance. It worth it. He is worth it all.

With great affection,

Rebekah Hope

PS: Listen to this song. You’ll get it.

 

What word of advice would you give to yourself at 18 years old?

Advertisements

7 thoughts on “Letter to my 18 year old self

  1. What a beautiful post.

    I would tell myself to read the Bible more. To put my faith and trust in Him, rather than those around me. And to cherish the moments of falling in love.

  2. But don’t take “waiting on the Lord” literally.

    THIS!! I can’t tell you how many times I’ve passed up an opportunity or said no to something because I “hadn’t prayed or heard God” I feel sad for the things I might have missed. Yet thankful I know the difference now. That I can dream boldly and wildly and go for it. If they fall through, that’s ok. At least I tried.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s