Dear Younger Me

Rosalynn LasleyFaith, Motherhood0 Comments

 One of my favorite things to do is to think about how life has ended up for me.  I know I’m still young, and my story is still unfolding, but when I look back at how things have gone so far, it’s so different from what I had imagined it would be. 

  I love to think about times like before I fell in love with my husband, before I even liked him.  I love to think about how life has changed over the last 16 years.  I think about that young girl, the high school freshman who thought he was a total jerk.  I think it would be fun to whisper to her “you’re going to marry that guy someday…and have his babies.” I’m certain the look on my 14 year old face  would have been priceless. Every time I think of our love story I smile, and thank God that He had better plans for me than I could see for myself.  The funny thing is that before I started really getting to know my husband (back when he was just a guy in my P.E. class I wasn’t fond of) I had been praying about our life together.  I didn’t know it at the time, but I was.  I had lots of random “boyfriends” all through my freshman year and then at one point I thought “This is really silly.  I should just focus on school and when God knows who He wants in my life, He will let me know.” *cue prince charming* I know it was a God thing, because never in a million years would I have imagined that my husband is who I would have ended up with, nor would I have imagined he would be as phenomenal as he is.  I’m so thankful Gods ways are higher than my own.

  I love to think back to the times before my daughters were born.  There’s something about that time before you have children that gives you an incredible misunderstanding of what parenting is going to be like.  I was a “perfect parent” and had life all figured out before I had kids.  Then God blessed us with a tiny baby girl that cried for 6 months straight. I had no idea how hard it would be, being a mom.  No idea at all.  I’d love to go back and whisper to that 20 something young woman, rocking that colicy baby night after night, with tears streaming down her face, and encourage her with a few simple words “The days are long, but the years are short.  I know this isn’t what you signed up for but I promise you, it’s actually so much better than you can imagine.  You just have to wait and see.  She will help you see the Lord so much more clearly than you ever have.  She will help you depend on Him so much more than you ever have, you just have to wait.  Keep talking to Him, while you’re rocking her, because these precious times are times you’ll never get back.”  I had no idea how much I’d have to learn along the way.  I’d have to learn how to hand my worry over to the Lord over and over again. I’d have to learn how to forgive myself for being wrong, for not being a perfect parent, for messing up along the way. I’d have to forgive myself (and ask for forgiveness) for the days I was impatient, or angry, and for the times I’ve yelled or didn’t understand.  Younger me had NO IDEA what this would be like. 

 I often think about life and all that it has become, and I stand amazed every single time.

  If you know me at all, you know that I am one of those people that hates surprises. I’m impatient, anxious, and need to know what to expect.   Early on, my husband and I NEVER waited until Christmas morning to share our gifts with each other.  As each day pressed us closer to Christmas morning, the anticipation grew too strong to bear.  Eventually we’d be sitting in a pile of opened gifts with one another, paper and packaging strewn everywhere.  Ultimately that resulted in a lot of uneventful Christmas mornings, the gifts were already revealed, there was nothing left.  It wasn’t until our children were old enough to know the date, that we actually opened presents on Christmas morning, and now I’m glad we wait.  There are still times we give a gift or two early, just because we are so excited about what we’ve gotten for each other we can’t stand it, but Christmas is more memorable when you wait until the morning for the gifts.

Waiting has never been one of my strong points, younger me struggled with it, and current me does as well.  I love to know exactly what to expect both good and bad so I can be prepared, but life doesn’t work that way.  You aren’t mean to get an early look at the gifts, you have to be patient and wait for them to be revealed at the right time.

Jesus replied, “You don’t understand now what I am doing, but someday you will.”
John 13:7
The last year of life I have really thought a lot about this verse and have had to hold tight to that promise.  There have been a lot of things that I never would have imagined we would face.  If I would have known when I was younger that this was how my story would go, would it have changed things? Would I have lived life differently if younger me rushed to open the gifts before it was time? I definitely think so.  It’s possible that if younger me knew what was coming, I would attempt to endure the trials in my own strength (thinking I was better equipped than God to handle things) and I would most likely take the joy for granted as well.  If younger me didn’t have to wait for the “Christmas mornings” in life, I never would have seen God the way I do now. If I rushed to open things before it was time, I imagine I would be disappointed because sometimes the gifts don’t come in great packages.  Sometimes gifts come through trials. Sometime there’s a big mess surrounding the gift, just like Christmas morning, but when you can see through the mess, the gift is revealed. 

  There are still things I don’t understand as current me, waiting for God to present me with His gifts, but the peace that surpasses all understanding reminds me that someday I will. 

12 Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
Hebrews 12:1-2
What about you? Are you one of the people who like to have a sneak peek? Do you rush the “Christmas mornings” in your life? Do you look back on your life and think “This is not at all what I had imagined my life would be.” like I do? Do you trust that someday you’ll understand that things are exactly the way they’re supposed to be, even when we don’t understand right now?
MercyMe has a beautiful song that chokes me up every single time I hear it.  The song is called Dear Younger Me and it has been one of the many songs on my heart in this season of my life.  I have included the lyrics as well as a youtube video of the song at the bottom of this blog, if you’d like to check it out. 
It is my prayer that you will have peace while you wait on your “Christmas mornings” in life.  His timing, and His gifts to us are perfect, we just have to wait to open them. 
In His Love,
Rosalynn
“Dear Younger Me”
Dear younger me
Where do I start
If I could tell you everything that I have learned so far
Then you could be
One step ahead
Of all the painful memories still running thru my head
I wonder how much different things would be
Dear younger me, dear younger me

Dear younger me
I cannot decide
Do I give some speech about how to get the most out of your life
Or do I go deep
And try to change
The choices that you’ll make cuz they’re choices that made me
Even though I love this crazy life
Sometimes I wish it was a smoother ride
Dear younger me, dear younger me

If I knew then what I know now
Condemnation would’ve had no power
My joy my pain would’ve never been my worth
If I knew then what I know now
Would’ve not been hard to figure out
What I would’ve changed if I had heard

Dear younger me
It’s not your fault
You were never meant to carry this beyond the cross
Dear younger me

You are holy
You are righteous
You are one of the redeemed
Set apart a brand new heart
You are free indeed

Every mountain every valley
Thru each heartache you will see
Every moment brings you closer
To who you were meant to be
Dear younger me, dear younger me

You are holy
You are righteous
You are one of the redeemed
Set apart a brand new heart
You are free indeed

About Rosalynn Lasley

I've been happily married to my high school sweetheart more years of my life than believable. It's true what they say, time flies when you're having fun. God has blessed us with 4 children, 3 we have the pleasure of raising, and one waiting for us in Heaven. I have always enjoyed writing but my call to ministry came during some of my most difficult times thus far. Writing for Alaska Christian Women's Ministry helped me start to make sense of all that God has been walking me through, even when sometimes it's messy and painful. I never realized that telling my story, even the ugly parts, could be encouraging to other women until I started writing. It's true that God will make beauty from ashes, you just have to let Him. My writing is often serious, and sometimes heavy in nature, but in real life I'm usually the complete opposite of serious. I LOVE TO LAUGH, and say that humor is my unofficial spiritual gift. I'm fairly awkward when first meeting someone, but if I can make you laugh then I think we'll end up being excellent friends. I'm certain that my husband is the only person on earth that doesn't think I'm all that funny. If I can make him laugh, I'm a happy girl! I have the blessing of serving in the junior high ministry at my local church, and find it such a joy hanging out with those smelly young people, week after week. They bless my heart far more than I could ever bless theirs in the short amount of time we meet each week.

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