14 February 2013


Dear Self in Ten Years,

Do you think its cute that I thought this blog might still be around in 10 years?

I wanted to tell you something.  I realized it earlier today, and thought you should know.  I have to start with a little background information though, just in case you have made some grown-up changes in regard to your ability to schedule hair appointments.  See, right now, I do this thing.  I grow my hair a bit.  And then I chop it off a bit.  I'm not so great at keeping up with regular hair cuts, so the short hair ends up growing long.  I get comfortable with the idea that I can pull it into a pony tail, so I just get it trimmed a time or two.  Then a year goes by and I realize that I wear my hair in ponytails every. single. day.  So I decide I should just cut it off.  So I do.

And I did.  Again.

{What, self?  People snapped pictures of themselves all the time in 2013 with their iPhones, just be thankful its not in a bathroom mirror.}

This time around, as I flat iron my hair.  I've noticed some gray hair.  Just this morning, that one toward the front was being especially showy.  Its even a little wiry.  You know the ones?  Not like the kind that have shown up periodically over the years, that might've just been a super-light-same-texture-as-the-rest-of-my-hair gray hair.  No, these are the real-deal gray hairs.  And guess what, self?  I'm not mad about it.  I'm not scared of it.

The thing is, we're staring down 37, which means we're 36 right now. (We? Me? Letter writing to oneself is just asking for all kinds of grammar errors.  From here out, I'm sticking with first person, OK?  I doubt that Strunk & White has any information about this, so just quit arguing with me.) 

Basically, I've been an adult for 18 years.  Life can be divided evenly into childhood and adulthood right now. 

You might remember that this relationship with Jesus got for-really-real at 18.  You had known Him most of your life, but not very well.    18 is when you first learned that He was who He said He was - that His promises were absolutely true even in your most lonely of lonely places.  Remember, those times in the bunk bed at college, just weeping over past mistakes and heartbreak?  He was there.  He told you then that He had a good plan for you, plans to prosper you and not to harm you. Plans to give you a hope and a future.  You believed it.  When He sent you across the country to work at that residential school in the mountains of Southern California, you were certain He was with you.  And He was.  So when the phone call came that asked you if you'd consider being a teacher in The Gambia for a year, you knew He arranged it.  So you kissed your family good-bye and flew to Africa.  And He went before you.  He stayed with you, He comforted you when you had no other earthly friends around you.  He proved that His love was not going to fail. Not ever.  You were certain He was all you would ever need.  So when He introduced you to that man that knocked your socks off after you got back from Africa?  Well, that took you a bit to believe.  How could He have chosen such a man to be yours?  Even now this is still a marvel to you.  (I'm sure when you read this in 10 years, you'll still be amazed).  It's especially delightful to consider this on Valentine's day.  When you finally accepted that God had a gift so good in store for you, you knew the story He would write with your lives would be filled with surprises.  And He has been writing it in a surprisingly beautiful way.  Not that any of your best guesses would be anywhere close to the reality He would bless you with. 

I could probably write you paragraphs upon paragraphs about just how real Jesus has been in your life these past 18 years.  Each story would certainly have a few rabbit-trails of God's goodness and the paragraphs would multiply into chapters.  He has been so faithful in the details of the every day.  Always.  There is not enough time now to tell it all.  Let me just get to the point.

Those gray hairs.

They are evidence of life well-lived.

That is exactly what I thought today as I spied more-than-a-couple hanging around in that flat iron.  I'm certain that was an impression from God; because this world would rather I freak out about that sort of thing.  Today, I'm perfectly OK with them.

Self, I hope you are still OK with them by the time you read this -- that goes for any friends or family members that took a peek at this letter to future me today.  Keep noticing the evidence of a life well-lived... it would be a shame if everything stayed the same for years upon years. I hope that you just keep believing Jesus for all He is.  Keep letting His voice be the One that you listen for and when you hear it, obey it.  If He tells you that you are beautiful, then celebrate it.  He has good plans for you.  Plans to prosper you and not to harm you.  Plans to give you a hope and a future.  He is working them out now, each part fits together with the next. Call upon Him.  Seek Him with all of your heart, you'll find Him at every turn.  Keep celebrating the good gifts He's given.  Do not shy away from the calling in your life, do not hide the grays away.  Keep living life well.  Day by day, He will continue to carry you.

We are re-reading the Jesus Storybook Bible, this morning we read about creation.  These words are true today.  "God loved them with all of His heart.  And they were lovely because He loved them."  Believe it.  Gray hair or not - his Love makes you lovely.  Always.

embracing the evidence of a life well-lived, with love;

"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. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you.  You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart."  Jeremiah 29:11-13


  1. Glad I found this today when I noticed a few grey hairs too!