Dear Twenty-One-Year-Old Me

June 30, 2015 Comments Off on Dear Twenty-One-Year-Old Me

This month, I’m going to be writing letters to myself at various stages in my life. Below is the fifth and final installment, for my twenty-one-year-old self.

Dear twenty-one-year-old me,

Breathe. Just breathe. And then let go. Let go of your expectations. Let go of your agenda. Let go of your timeline. You are not God. You are not in control. He is. His timing is perfect. His plan is perfect. Relax. And breathe once more for good measure.

Preparing to leave such a rich community is heartbreaking, I know. But what you can’t see is that there is a wonderful opportunity for you to build a new community in a place that desperately needs it, if only you will keep moving forward instead of getting stuck in the despair of leaving your current home.

I know you’re agonizing over the fact that you still don’t have a job lined up for after graduation. I know that tortures you. I know it keeps you up at night as your mind continues spinning long into the night, trying to devise a new plan of attack to provide your own safety net in what feels like a free-fall with no view of the ground. But take heart; the moment you let go of your will in this is the very moment that the pieces will start to fall together without your interference.

God is going to do far greater things that what you can even imagine. There will certainly be a lot of painful goodbyes involved, but there will also be times of joyous celebration as you see how He will graciously provide for all of your needs. You will later be able to look back and see how He was working all the while, putting the pieces together to create something beautiful.

Life won’t unfold just the way you want; it’s not your story to plot out. You focus too much on what you alone are capable of, putting God and what He can do inside a box of your limitations. Lay down your expectations, and you will be surprised with what wonderfully amazing things come up that weren’t possible while you were holding so tightly to your own agenda.

Expect great things, but don’t tell God how or when to do them. Know that you will make a difference, but leave margin for the when and the how. Explore your passions, giving God room to work with them and fashion them into a meaningful way to spend your time and invest your life. And don’t be afraid to dream a little bigger, darling.

All my love,

Jessie

July 1, 2015

Jessie

I am a twenty-something recent college grad trying to understand what life in the “real world” looks like, even as I trip over my own two feet quite a bit in the process. I am a firm believer in grace, fitness, community, nutrition, simpler living, travel, books, sunshine, kindness, creativity, living life with my people, and pursuing a full life in Christ. I like to spend my time cooking (and then devouring) healthy and delicious food, running outside, curling up with a good book and a cup of tea, and relaxing with friends and family. I'm a program manager for the maintenance side of a display fixture company by day and a writer/cook/reader by night. I graduated from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse with a degree in Communication, but I'm still not sure what I want to be when I grow up. When I'm not writing, you can find me cooking up some new-to-me recipes in the kitchen (inevitably making a huge mess), watching a show on Netflix (lazy Sundays, anyone?), hanging out with my friends or family (they're the best!), or curled up on the couch with a big book (the best way to unwind, hands down). My idea of a perfect day would include all of those things-- getting in a run in beautiful weather, making a delicious and nutritious series of meals, playing games, watching a movie, or just chatting with friends and/or family, and curling up with a good book and a nice soy candle. And maybe some dark chocolate. Always some dark chocolate. It is life. I am prayerfully seeking to live every day with purpose, intentionally pouring into the things and relationships that mean the most to me. I want to make the world a better place, one day at a time, in whatever little way I can.

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