a letter to college me
You are in the middle of college, so this is kind of an awkward conversation to have like this.
You are probably not even sure why I am writing to you.
How are you?
I know you won’t answer honestly. I don’t even know if you know that you are lying...when you say that you are doing well.
It’s been dark for a while, hasn’t it?
So dark that you don’t even recognize it as darkness.
It’s just your normal.
The enemy does that.
He decorates your prison to make you feel at home.
Don’t think I don’t remember --
how you thought of me,
the way you treated me,
the words you said to me.
You greet others at the church doors still, right? I wonder what your life would be like if you greeted yourself with the same kindness.
Your full length mirror is a glass cage, and who you are is on the other side. It’s hard to feel pretty when your life feels ugly, isn’t it? It feels kind of like sipping mud out of a porcelain tea cup. Maybe pretty to look at from the outside, but not as effective in use. That is pretty much how you feel, right?
Yes. I remember what you did to our mind,
Each action affecting the pieces individually;
yet each deteriorating at the same rate.
The cuts to your heart are subtle and casual that you won’t even notice for a while.
I can still feel that slow, dull ache that you feel.
The truth is, what you said to me was more hurtful than the words of anyone else.
And the words from others were pretty bad, right?
I know the truth of how you can’t be alone.
I know how you can’t be with people, either.
I know how sad you are, what seems like all of the time right now.
Your addictions, your vices, and things you do to make yourself feel better – did you know they are making it worse?
You won’t know that until it’s almost too late, right?
You are "just doing something for yourself for once",
or at least that is what you will tell yourself.
And you will really, really believe it.
It is interesting how much college breeds selfishness.
It's evident if you look.
It is interesting how being self-serving turns around to hurt the only person it was trying to serve.
It is interesting how things that we try to medicate with eventually brings us to the bottom of the bottle of our lives.
When we live for ourselves,
it is so interesting how far it gets flipped upside down.
When we live backwards, we unravel.
You are in places that you don’t want to be, driving down long roads you don’t want to drive down, buying things you don’t want to buy and floating through meetings and classes and conversations.
I am honestly just so sad – that you let darkness take over our life for so long, and didn’t seek help. It’s hard to ask for help when you don’t know you need it to begin with.
Sweet daughter of the King,
(did you know that's your name?)
you are holding onto chains that have already been unlocked. You are covering up your shame with more things to be shameful about.
You are trying to get into a room of acceptance that you are already in. STOP.
When God looks at you, He doesn’t see the dust collected on your life.
He sees Jesus.
He sees Jesus’ sacrifice all over your life.
As you try to decorate your body with what you think will be acceptable, what will attract the most attention – you already have the affections of your Creator.
As your tears fall and the rejection is a fierce wind, your Savior is an even stronger storm.
As you are trying to fill a void in your soul that nothing on this earth can gratify, your Wonderful Counselor is present and sufficient with open arms.
You will keep trying and keep trying until one day – one day – you will proclaim Jesus’ victory as your own.
You can take off the weights on your shoulders, because the burden has already been taken.
Your slate is washed clean by your God that loves you more than anyone ever will, and it will be the biggest deep breath.
Your affections do not belong to that person, that substance, that attention, that moment of temporary rush.
Because that’s just it.
You will chase after that temporary rush until you run yourself into the ground.
You can look up and establish your life in the everlasting Grace and Love of Christ.
Root your life and connect to a source that never runs dry.
I write this letter to you because one day, like He always does, God will turn your mistakes and pain of these moments into something you would not believe.
Something unbelievably beautiful.
Something unquestionably His doing.
He is doing things in your days that you would not believe even if you were told (Habakkuk 1:5).
I'm not blind to the fact that life is still difficult now. Even though things will get better, small things will try to bring you back down. Words still hurt and things still happen.
“How can you call yourself a Godly Christian wife when _______________?”
“Why do you try?”
Yes, they’ll really say that. And sometimes you still will to yourself.
But I write to you to tell you that there is nothing that can take away your identity in Christ, once you find it. Proclaim it. Stand on it.
When everything looks lost and out of control, speak Psalm 119 over your life.
Find a friend; don’t do this alone.
Please, right now, lay the mess of your life down,
give your heart time to heal,
and accept the grace that is freely given,
even though you don't believe you deserve it right now.
I accept you from here,
even if you don’t accept yourself right now.
I love you from here,
even if you don’t love yourself right now.
You don’t know it yet, but your brokenness you are experiencing now will be used for His Glory.
Your brokenness now will be used to serve people with your story.
You don’t know it yet, but your brokenness now will bring you to a new understanding of your need for Christ,
and there will be nothing more beautiful.