Dear Younger Me,
You are a nursing student, you are living alone, you have a wonderful best friend just like you’re praying for now. You are not a nun, like you think you want to be right now. You are fun, you are happy, and you are full of Joy.
You’re heart will soon become very accustomed to pain, rejection, and at times bitterness. Enjoy your little heart. Enjoy the years that your worries are small, although they seem big now. Enjoy the seasons where meals are prepared, laundry done, and homework only takes you twenty minutes. Be thankful. Be thankful that your parents are around and care. Be thankful for their help and support. Remember that whatever a day may hold, choose joy.
There will soon come a day when pain is so sharp and so deep that you will not cry for three years. You won’t be able to feel. You will be completely numb. Then one day you will be standing out in the rain and you will feel a rain drop. Just like a flower after a monsoon rain, your heart will slowly begin to bloom again.
Along with your heart beginning to bloom, you will find your voice. Right now your voice is soft, sweet, innocent, almost carefree. Life will change that voice by trying to steal it completely, but the Lord has other plans. He has, “Plans to turn the darkness in into light, the tears to shouts of joy.” You will find your voice.
You will make some really poor decisions in life that will leave your heart and emotions crushed. You will feel dirty, used, and worthless. You will feel like you will never be wanted, loved, or chosen again, but God is in the business of forgiveness, redemption, peace, love, and joy! It will take time and often you will feel as if you are running backwards, sideways, everywhere but where you need to go, but God will guide you and you will be okay. You will understand what it means to forgive and be forgiven.
Remember the story of David. He is one of the most immoral men in scripture and yet God calls him, “A man after God’s own heart,” because he knew the power of forgiveness.
Embrace it for you cannot feel the joy without it. You cannot accept love without it. You cannot truly live until you know and embrace forgiveness.
You are loved, you are chosen, and God is writing your story of redemption.
Dear younger me, your twenty year plan is not going to happen, so put that aside and live, really live! Enjoy those free afternoons where you can hike up a waterfall or a rugged mountain path. Enjoy those sunrise chats with Jesus and those whimsical nights watching the lanterns float through the air on Loi Krathong. Enjoy the little moments. Smell those flowers as you walk by, smile at that neighbor. Keep your doors open.
Ultimately, chotu, keep your heart open. This world would like nothing more that to take your voice, your smile, and your love. Don’t let it. Honey, I’m not going to say more, because if you changed anything, you would never get those hard, heart-wrenching lessons that have made you the woman you are today.
You have bruises, you have scars, you have a story that is far from pretty, but it is your story. It is the story God wrote for you before time began and it is your testament to his faithful, relentless pursuit of your heart.
Enjoy this journey, don’t be afraid to cry, and ultimately, never be afraid to love. You hurt much because you love much, but that is never something you need to or should apologize for.
Remember regardless of what happens in life: “I’m a happy joyful person!” … you’ll understand that later and will be shocked to hear yourself say it in multiple arguments with your future boyfriend. Oh and also, the first guy you date, will not be the last guy you date, you might marry the first guy, but there will be many, many trials in that… but that’s a whole different story!
Enjoy the ride, it’s bumpy, but the view from the top is worth it.
11 days down, 354 days to go!