BY JESSICA LANDMON
Last night, my sweet girl graduated from the eighth grade. As you can imagine, it was filled with many emotions and moments of reflection. It seems like just yesterday that I was pushing her on the swings and having princess tea parties. But things are changing. She is changing. In fact, her story is just beginning.
Like with every good book, the first few chapters are dedicated to setting up the storyline. These chapters are more foundational in nature. But now, as she enters high school in the fall, a new chapter begins – one where I take a step back, and where she takes a big step forward in independence. This step will be filled with many decisions and choices that will impact how the rest of her story goes.
So what advice can I tell her? What guidance can I give to all the young women out there who are starting a new chapter in their lives? What advice can I offer to women who are in the middle or nearing the end of their story? Truthfully, it’s all the same.
First, and foremost, you need to decide who is going to author your story. Are you going to make decisions based off your emotions? Or, are you going to use the Word of God and the counsel of the Holy Spirit to set out your path? This is a big decision – one that will set out the course of your life. Following your emotions will only lead to failure and frustration. But, allowing God to author your story will guarantee a life of peace and fulfillment. I’m not suggesting it will be all rosy, but God will be with you every step of the way.
The LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. – Deuteronomy 31:6
With that said, we can all agree that a good story is filled with all sorts of subplots: adventure, romance, friendship, betrayal, trial, success, and failure. We need to recognize that the ups and downs are a part of a successful Godly life. God is knitting together all the pieces, good and bad, to set you up for your destiny. Don’t run from the difficult times – grow from them.
Moreover, be true to yourself, and don't let culture be the standard that you measure your worth. There is no size, beauty or education requirement that makes you more valuable to God. Our identity is based in Him. So, make decisions that honor Him. The decisions you make today in this chapter of your life will catch up with you tomorrow.
“Someday your past will meet your present. Make sure she doesn't embarrass you.” – All Mascara Is Not Created Equal
We often hear phrases like, “You only live once, buy the shoes, eat the cake.” I would challenge you with something deeper because you do only have one story to live out. Make it count. Take the leap of faith. Make the most of the talent God gave you. Don't let fear or the opinions of others stop you from living out God’s story in you.
Ladies, what do you want the story of your life to look like? Do you want it filled with conformity and worldliness? Or, do you want your story to be one of a kind, written by the greatest author ever. The choice is obviously yours. And that decision starts today.