To my much younger self
Had I known then what I know now…
I would have:
Eaten lean, green and clean
Kept running 3 miles per day (kinda slow jogging in reality…)
Maintained a 3 times per week stretching & strength training routine
Guarded my innocence
Stayed involved with Young Life
Read the Bible every day
Welcomed the Campus Crusade for Christ into my dorm room
instead of shutting the door on them
and telling them my story was between God and me
(how clueless was I???)
Given Bibles for Christmas and Easter as gifts from my heart
Honored my husband as head of our household
Raised my sons with mutually agreed upon, shared values with my husband
Spoken words of L I F E over my family
Spoken words of B L E S S I N G over my family
Prayed words of life and blessing over my family
Praised God for being good…all the time
Read the Bible to my babies every day
Read the Bible to my toddlers every day (same boys)
Read the Bible to my young sons every day (same boys)
Read the Bible to my teenage sons every day (same boys)
Guarded the boys innocence diligently
from violent video games
from TV shows that differed from my values
from pornographic websites, magazines, etc.
Taught the boys our values versus assuming they would “catch” them.
Reinforced our values daily based on a Biblical foundation.
I see a theme…
I grew up in a home where we were in church whenever the doors opened…YET…
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. ~ Jeremiah 29:11
To guide me, to guard me, to give me hope and a future, to grow me, to groom me into what His Son came for – to live the life I should have lived and die the death I should have died so I have ETERNAL LIFE with Jesus Christ.
To change me from my own ignorant, know it-all-self
into a woman who’s covered by God’s graceful presence
and no longer full of it (myself!)
but full of His grace, I pray.
Do you know how God controls the clouds and makes his lightning flash? ~ Job 37:15
No, I do not, yet I know He does! And whether I know or don’t know does not change who God is.
And that is good. And God is good all the time.
Even when I am ignorant, He is in control.
Or in denial, He is in control. Or scared silly, He is in control.
Or clueless about how He controls stuff, God is still in control.
Or … whatever the situation may be, God is in control.
I have chosen the way of faithfulness;
I have set my heart on your laws. ~
Psalm 119:30 NIV
I like that word…
How would a letter to your younger self read?
26 thoughts on “A Letter”
This is absolutely beautiful and speaks volumes about how knowing, loving and trusting God can change life I’ve enjoyed co-hosting #OMHGWW with you.
Such a great opportunity to share your message, there is so much that we do to help our families. I have enjoyed reading your post and appreciate that you are Co-Hosting with #OMHGWW this month!!!
Hope you have a beautiful day!!
Susan, you have such an amazing talent….and amazing insight. Your words truly touched me and I can identify with so much of what you shared.
Thank you for joining the #SundaysDownUnder linky party! I’ve pinned your post and shared on social media.
Thanks also for sharing your thoughts, memories and advice.
Natasha in Oz
My letter would be to the little girl who was made fun of all through elementary and middle school, and the teenager/young adult who had no parental guidance growing up to show me the way of Jesus. “Their words DO NOT define who you are”, and “No amount of attention from men will EVER fill you like the grace and love of Jesus”.
Raising children is difficult, but so rewarding. I am so amazed by your story of faithfulness and love.
If I wrote a letter to myself for all the things I know now, I don’t think I would be the same person. I don’t think I would have married the man I did, my children would obviously not be here and when I think of all these things, boy am I glad I didn’t know then what I know now – in some aspects. The one thing I would tell myself though, stop worrying about tomorrow. When I think of all those precious wasted hours worrying. I enjoyed reading your letter and Jer. 29:11 – that verse is a verse I claimed years ago to end the constant worrying. Thank you for hosting your party.
Oooh, I love that verse: “I have chosen the way of faithfulness…” Makes me smile. And, makes me think…it must make God smile too. 🙂 Reminds me of Joshua…”As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” Sweet post, Susan. 🙂
Wow, Susan. I’m taking this one personally today. This is a word. Thank you so much!!
All the things we would have told our younger self, but would our younger self had listened? I think of the movie, “13 Going on 30” when the older self is talking to the Mom at the breakfast table and the Mom has the best advice ever. She says she wouldn’t have changed anything because she would not have learned from the experiences she had. Thanks so much for hosting, and for sharing this wonderful post!
Yes, Susan!!! The Word! We need it desperately, and our kids need it too. Just yesterday I gave my son a copy of American Bible Society’s reading plan because I saw he’s been “slacking off” in Bible reading since school ended. He thanked me for it sincerely. And my daughter and I just shared our verses of the day over breakfast. i’m blessed!
This post is one of my favorites. I can see myself in some of your points and don’t we always wish we had done things a little differently when we look back. One of the areas I wish I had done better in was reading the Bible to my sons too. I brought them up in church but it was one that didn’t promote reading the bible as a way to live. Thank you for these words. I am praying for you as you attend #SheSpeaks this weekend.
I took on the name “Gram” this year, and rejoice that my son and his wife are raising their son to honor God, but even so, there are things that I want to go back and do over, do better, do more, do more intentionally. Thankful — so thankful — that all of this is in God’s hands. Thank you for your good words today.
So powerful, Susan. Why is it so hard to read the Word and share God’s instruction with our kids as they grow to be teens? Thank you for inspiring me to be more focused and diligent when it comes to imparting God’s instruction into my son’s life. I want him to live in the fullness of what God has for him during his time on this earth. Blessings, friend!
My letter to my younger self would echo many of your thoughts about your boys. “Guard” is an excellent word choice…I believe I bought too much into the myth that boys can take care of themselves better than girls. I wish I would have guarded my son’s heart as diligently as I guarded my daughter’s. Though we can’t be helicopter parents, we are called to guard and to discipline. Oh so many things I would have done differently…thanks for sharing!
Such good advice. I will hold onto it as mine continue to grow!
Blessings and smiles, my friend!
Praise the Lord for sticking by us until we learn the things He needs to teach us in order for us to draw near to Him. Thank you for your touching letter. I love hearing from moms that are at a different place in their lives than I am, there is always much wisdom to be learned. It made me think about my own choices as a mother. Thank you Susan. Thank you also for the link-up. Have a beautiful day.
Isn’t it incredible the wisdom we gain as we grow older?
Thanks for sharing this wisdom and for hosting the link-up.
I shared a letter I wrote to our son on his 16th birthday in hopes that it will encourage him in a future that will both honor God and provide for his good.
Blessings to you and yours.
Such powerful advice, Susan! Thank you for sharing. #livefreeThursday
Beautiful words! I know there are many things in my life I would do differently too. But thank God for his grace! And like you said, God is still in control. All the time. No matter where we are at. Thanks again for the encouraging words. 🙂
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