Tuesday, August 5, 2014

A Visit With a Younger Self

This evening is the last meeting of the summer Bible Study I was blessed to be part of. And for some explainable reason, I was asked to facilitate this last session…

Of course, I am nervous. I don’t want to mess up, especially since this has been such a great opportunity to meet wonderful ladies in my new town. 

At any rate, one of the neat things each facilitator has done at every meeting is to come up with an ice-breaker to be done before we start the discussion. I have really enjoyed these activities because they have given me a chance to get to know more about the ladies in the group. Well, guess what? I have to think of an ice-breaker for tonight.

I’ve been fretting about this for a while. I’m so bad at these kinds of things…and now, I am out of time to waste worrying. I need to think of something. 

Well, I guess I have…

I think it is because my birthday is fast approaching and with it I usually become a bit lost in my reminiscing that I thought, maybe, perhaps, it would be interesting to take a short trip to the past. I thought what if I could visit with a younger version of myself and have a chat…with myself…what could I say? What advice would I give…to myself? 

Even if we are very young, as we mature, we all figure a few things out that we wish we’d known before to avoid some heartache and headache.

In my case, I would travel to the time when I was in my mid to late teens. That was a time of great anxiety for me. I think it was the hormonal ups and downs of the age (hormones and I had never gotten along…not looking forward to menopause!) but I lived in a constant state of stress accompanied by deep sadness and loneliness. I couldn’t help it. I looked around me and everyone seemed to be having a good time, except me. I was so self-conscious and awkward. I didn’t know what to do with myself. So I reverted to day-dreaming. That was my escape. In my imaginary world, I could be whoever I wanted to and look, have, do whatever I wanted to (needless to say, that kind of escapism didn’t help my low self-esteem and loneliness).

Anyway, I would like to visit that girl and tell her a few things. The first thing I’d like to tell her is:

“Life is NOT about you.”

“It is all about Him! And your job is to allow yourself to be His instrument and to be used for the furthering of His Kingdom. Surrender yourself to Him. Lose your life. Don’t worry about it. Let Him invade you and you’ll never be lonely again.”

I think if someone wise had told me this, I would not have been so self-absorbed. I know all teenagers are, but I think, realizing life is not about ourselves is a good lesson to learn as early as we can. 

I would also tell myself to get a grip of my emotions so they don’t run me wild. Nobody ever told me that I can control my emotions…that I don’t have to let them control me…

And finally, I would tell myself, “don’t worry…everything is going to be OK.” 

“No matter what, Christ got you, and He is not going to let you go. God has your name written on the palm of His hand. And the Holy Spirit is your guide…so breathe and experience His peace.”

I am not sure how much of these I would have understood or believed or assimilated (none of it, if I’d say it in English, that’s for sure, since I didn’t speak English back then : ) but I think it would have done me good to have had those seeds planted in my heart and brain back then, so life would not be so hard today…so I wouldn’t be so selfish…so I wouldn’t be so self-centered.

Well, I don’t know if the ladies in my group are going to enjoy this ice-breaker or reject it. I hope they embrace it and go with it because it sure has been thought-provoking for me. What do you think? Would you like to do this exercise? Let me know. I will let you know what happens at Bible Study!

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