i can't help but feel a pressure. This age. Your listening ears. That giant heart... You have an incredible thought process that hasn't yet ruled me out as a fool. You want to learn and [if just for this moment] you listen to me. But how can i tell you all the important things? How can I saturate your mind full enough of Truth and wisdom to survive a possible mother-daughter teenage relational drought?
What is it right now that your formative self most needs to hear and learn and know... ?
You were created.
There is a God, who in His perfection, dreamed you up and made you come true. And He is still creating you. It is He alone who defines beauty. Refuse to compare all the different flowers in His bouquet... for it is their differences that compound the beauty. Hear from your Creator daily in order to be brave enough to open your mind to His idea of beautiful.
Your value differs from your purpose.
You are valuable because you're one of God's dreams come true. That is already established. Embracing that God-given value will empower you to work hard at your purpose. Knowing God and making Him known. This means hard work, serving others, dying to your own wants and feelings in exchange for those of Jesus. Don't get this confused. You don't need to serve or work or "succeed" in order to have value, you can serve and work and succeed because you are valuable. Know this even without the trophies for showing up...
You will be wrong.
You will be so incredibly totally convinced you're right, but you will realize you were completely wrong. You will try something you expect to be gifted at and bomb. Failure happens. It's vital and not to be feared. Try again. Apologize to those you argued with. This is how you learn. This is where toxic pride can be stripped away. It doesn't feel good, but with the Right One walking with you, you will survive and thrive through it.
... i'm getting too long winded...
Don't watch much TV.
Play outside in all the weather.
Get to know your neighbors.
Smile at those you pass.
Battle to save your kiss... It's worth it.
Stand for what is right.
Speak up for those who hurt.
Chew slowly so you can taste your food longer.
Life isn't about you.
Listen as much as you talk... with God and with people.
Give praise generously (Don't be a "story topper").
Feelings lie. Follow the Holy Spirit instead of your heart.
Avoid caffeine dependence for as long as possible.
Be (lovingly) honest even when it hurts.
Don't aim for that which is easy.
Accept the consequences.
Don't trip near a boy who doesn't truly love Jesus... that fall will hurt...
Be you. Walk close with Jesus. Shine.
Your life will be intense, painfull, thrilling and impactful.
i'm incredibly excited to walk through the rest of it with you!