Hi friends! I’m SO stoked about today’s guest post by Sarah Proeber. Several weeks ago, Sarah wrote a killer Instagram post; advice she’d give her 15-year-old self; and I loved it. I’m almost 18, but I honestly don’t think anyone could outgrow this sweet, solid advice. So, I asked Sarah if she would write a similar post for the blog. She did, and you can tell she poured her heart into every word.
I hope Sarah blesses you as much as she has me!
Dear 15 year old me,
You know the feeling: walking down the hallway and it seems to you everyone’s eyes are on you. You didn’t get the chance to straighten your hair today and your mom told you that you couldn’t wear those ripped jeans you spent your babysitting money on to school. Life is over. Seems to be how you feel on the daily some weeks. The “cool” girls are laughing by their lockers, and you’re sure it’s about you. Your crush asked your best friend to homecoming. You’re positive you’re going to be the only one with braces in a few weeks, and you’re really tired of getting chunks of apple stuck in them at lunch. You can barely focus in Spanish class, you’re favorite class, because you’re stressing over who you’ll sit with in the cafeteria.
Oh sweet soul, there are two voices you can listen to during these hard fought high school years. One comes drifting to your ear with notes of pleasure, while the other seems less attractive. One promises great gain, while the other assures you of hardship. One is a sweet voice of those who love the world, while the other is the soft voice of your Savior who loves you unconditionally.
Do you hear them? Who will you follow? Allow me to throw in a bit of my personal advice, some advice from the you who has already lived through it and learned by it.
Be everyone’s friend.
Be the girl who’s too nice. Who smiles an annoyingly majority of the day. Who doesn’t have a “clique”.
Job 6:14 says, “He who withholds kindness from a friend forsakes the fear of the Almighty.” The voice of your Savior, my dear, never lies. Those so called “cool girls”? Stop worrying about them. PLEASE. What makes them any cooler than you anyways? And please, don’t try to be like them. Stay true to you.
Stand up for yourself.
Be a warrior for what you believe in. God gave you values & dreams & beliefs for a reason. Don’t be ashamed of them.
“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is–his good, pleasing and perfect will” Romans 12:2. Do not let the outward pushes of the sinful world persuade you to let go of your stronghold. Rather, let God wrap His mighty arms around you during the storm. He will protect you & never let you go.
Give yourself GRACE.
Don’t get all caught up in being the “perfect” person, having the best of everything, or being the best at everything. We’re all human.
1 Peter 3:3-4 “Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.” Although the judgment of your peers may seem like the be all end all, I’ll drop the reminder that the ultimate judge, your Heavenly Father, cares zero about your outward appearance or the things you own. He sees the most precious part of you – your heart – and He loves you just the same each day.
Love your mom & dad.
Just adore them. They gave you everything they could and always will. You don’t know better than them, even if you’re positive you do. One day you’ll wish they were still in your life like they were back then.
Exodus 20:12 declares, “ Honor your father and mother, that it may go well with you and you may enjoy long life on the earth.” I know, you’ve heard it before many times. But did you know this is the only commandment that God attached a promise to? When your mom and dad say they love you, you may run & scream & deny it, saying they’re ruining your life, but trust me in this, their love is the strongest, second only to God’s love for you. Unlike your peers who compare themselves to you & hope to be better than you, your parents pray that you far exceed their success, but most importantly that your faith grows stronger each day.
Don’t get hung up on boysss; they come & go.
Trust me. Be patient in allowing God to give you the perfect person to adventure with forever.
“We love because He first loved us” John 4:19. When you think about true love, what comes to mind? The perfect high school sweetheart fairytale marriage? Well, that pales in comparison to the love Jesus has for you. Keep your heart focused on him & when He is ready, God will bring the perfect (not in a literal sense, because all boys have cooties, right?) man into your life who will lead you in your life and bring you closer to God, not further away.
Let your light shine bright!
Sit with the kid who always sits alone. Help a friend with their homework. Don’t try to fit in with the “cool” kids. Be the LIGHT God made you to be.
Matthew 5:14-16, “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.” Better than any compliment you could ever receive from your friends at school is the compliment God gives you here. You are the light of the world! He says. When you allow your faith to shine through, you will always be beautiful. The mean jokes, the hurtful rumors, the hateful cuts at your reputation do not stand a chance when battling the light that shines from your firm faith.
Listen to the voices again. What appeals to you, sweet one? Listen closely
“I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. He who is a hired hand and not a shepherd, who does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees, and the wolf snatches them and scatters them. He flees because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep. I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father; and I lay down my life for the sheep.” John 10:11-18
Who will you listen to?
The one who lays down his life for you or the one who won’t stick around? The one who cares nothing for you or the one who loves you to no end? The one who knows your every thought or the one who just hears what they want to hear?
There’s a big world out there. Thankfully we have a big, big God.
Those cool girls you want to fit in with may accept you for a while, but then turn & spread rumors about you. God? Be His groupie; He will always welcome you with open arms. Your peers on earth may say they know you, but they don’t care the way God cares for you. He has felt your pain & your every temptation. He is by your side always.
Finally, to you my sweet friend, remember, He forgives. When you listen to the voice of the world, when you make a mistake, when it feels like you’ve made a giant mess of your life, it’s simple – He forgives. Cry as you may; hide in your room; shelter yourself from ridicule – your Savior’s voice remains and speaks these words to settle your solemn soul.
“The Lord your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing.” Zephaniah 3:17
Take heart now. His love is never failing. He rejoices over you. He has saved you – & in His voice you will find all you need.
Get to know Sarah:
Hi! My name is Sarah. I love to look on the bright side, adventure whenever possible, sit in quaint coffee shops, and get a good sweat in when I can.