In September I will turn 27.
Doesn’t even seem possible, but yet, with the extremely fast & furious passage of time, it is.
I was reading one of my favorites, Beth Moore’s Living Proof Ministries blog and came across this post in which one of her staff shares 29 years worth of lessons on her 29th birthday.
I was inspired!
This past Christmas, Mom gave me a notebook.
To anyone else this appears to be just a notebook, but to me it is treasure.
It is filled with wisdom that she herself has learned, scriptures that mean something to her and her walk with Jesus, wise sayings that were passed down from great Southern women like my grandmothers, great grandmothers, aunts, cousins, and even some of her life-long friends and role models too.
Half of the book is complete with her writings, silly sayings, and items of note and the remainder of the book is blank.
Ready for me to fill in and then pass along to my daughter when the time is right.
It is a beautiful gift and depiction of the bond we share with one another and with words.
So, in honor of that tradition, I recorded 27 lessons I have learned in (almost) 27 years.
These are in no particular order. So here we go…
1) There are very few people in this life that you can truly be yourself with. These people can see your beautiful, your ugly, your weaknesses, and still love & accept you unconditionally. These people are a rare gift from your Savior; glimpses of His love here on earth. Cherish those relationships and nurture them.
2) Laughter is the best medicine; truly a cure-all… Well, that and chocolate.
3) A life not filled with love is meaningless. Lavish your love upon others; let them be awash in it.
4) The best way to spend your money is travel. Travel much, travel often. Learn new cultures, experience new cuisine. Line your walls with pictures and your heart with memories.
5) It’s okay to admit that you are/were wrong. Take the blame, make the apologies, and learn from this experience. It will make you a better person moving forward. It doesn’t mean you are a failure, but rather that you are not a coward.
6) Relinquish control. You have no control over life’s circumstances, life’s unexpected happenings, or life’s trials. Give up control, and learn TRUST. It’s the hardest and most important lesson you can learn.
7) Comparison is the thief of joy.
8) It’s okay to admit that you don’t have all the right answers. As hard as that is to say, you don’t.
9) Scripture memory is not a habit you lose after childhood. Continue to memorize His truths, write them down, and add them to your heart so you may recall them when they are needed.
10) When you get up in the morning, Pray. Wrap your whole day in prayer. It is the single best thing you can do to begin your day.
11) “You is kind, you is smart, you is important.” – quote from The Help and oh so true! Never forget your value! You are one-of-a-kind; a true original.
12) Baking is good for the soul. Especially cleaning the batter off your spatula. That’s a baker’s prerogative.
13) Wear sunscreen every day. Every day.
14) Take the time & effort to send a note through the mail. It is both highly-personal and highly-thoughtful.
15) Journal. Write it down- your thoughts, prayers, wishes, hopes, dreams, fears. Record it for you and posterity. May it be a living, breathing testimony to your great God!
16) Don’t be afraid to be put outside your comfort zone. It is there where He meets you and sustains you. It is also there where you find purpose.
17) Invest in higher quality clothing items & accessories. It’s better to have less of what you absolutely love than lots of things you like. And just because it’s on sale, does not mean you “have to have it.”
18) You are never too old to use the words “Mommy” or “Daddy.” Those labels are universal and unchanging.
19) Find one restful activity that centers you, gives you peace, and recharges your batteries, Once you find that thing, whatever it may be, do it regularly. Protect that time, keep it sacred. Even us extroverts need that time to rest & recharge; especially us.
20) Reading is never a waste of time. Actually, often, it may be one of the very best uses of your time. Escape from reality for just a while and live in the land of fiction.
21) Share a smile. Even with strangers. It’s sometimes the best, little, encouraging thing you can do for someone.
22) Ask for forgiveness, daily.
23) Love yourself for who you are at that moment. Not for who you used to be or for who you are becoming. Love yourself today.
24) Be trustworthy. Never take other people’s trust lightly. Safe-guard it and follow through on what you have been entrusted with. Once lost, trust is hard to win back.
25) The precious gift of food can never be underestimated. It is Southern hospitality at its very core.
26) Never give up in the pursuit of excellence. It will never be achieved, but it is a worthy pursuit to become the very best version of yourself.
27) Be still. Take deep breaths. Become small. And it’s okay to be small because you are known. You are known by the most high God, and if He knows you, you don’t need to be known, recognized, or praised by anyone else. His knowing is your heart’s desire.
So, what are some of your life lessons? What is the one piece of wisdom you simply must share with those you care about?
Would you share it?