Dear Sweet One, Remember This…

Dear Sweet One,

I remember when you were “just a bump” in your mommy’s tummy. Oh my goodness…I was ecstatic to be Gigi to another grandchild! I remember praying for you before I met you. I remember loving you many months before I looked into your beautiful brown eyes and after our eyes met, I knew that I loved you even more. There are a few things I want to say to you and perhaps you will read this many years later…

Remember this…

You are loved. Not by human standards of love, but by God’s unmeasurable standard of love. He loves you with a forever love and He will never leave you. You can trust God, no matter what. You are a child of the covenant.

Your parent’s love for you will never fail, even when you think they don’t understand what you are going through…trust me, they do!  Dad and Mom understand everything, so don’t hide your fears and mistakes from them. They will be your best friend when you need a friend.  Trust your Father and Mother.

Everyone is not nice. You will experience conflicts and ugliness. Unfortunately, there are mean kids at school. Remember that mean kids who bully other kids have a poor self-esteem and most likely they are not loved like you are. Remember, it is the darkness in them that is lashing out at the light in your life. Remain confident in who you are and pray for those kids to experience love and grace that can transform them. Remember to keep your strength and resolve yet have compassion for those that are weaker than you.

Remember to pray often and always.

Cut up your credit cards!  Please, just use cash. If you don’t have cash to buy a new pair of shoes, then you don’t need a new pair of shoes. You are too young to know what stress is, but just wait until you have debt…then stress becomes the elephant in the room (I know!)  Debt will overwhelm your life and prevent you from experiencing wonderful adventures and freedom.

Remember to take time to be still and quiet. To reflect on the experiences of the day. Remember to thank God for writing that day in another chapter in your life!

Remember to use your talents and creativity to better this world for the glory of God.  It is your generation that will have the greatest impact in our nation and upon our culture. I pray with confidence that you will indeed make a difference in the community where you live, in the place where you work, and in the church where you serve.

Be generous. Give when you are able. Work for free just because you can. Remember, you can make a difference in one life or many lives with a heart of generosity.

Remember to plan for tomorrow so that you can enjoy the future.

Remember this…You are loved!

Linking up with everyone for Five Minute Friday, where a remarkably encouraging and loving community gathers to write for five minutes. This week’s prompt is: REMEMBER.
Five Minute Friday

Rescued from Resentful Bitterness

On my birthday, my Grandmother gave me a beautiful gold bracelet with a single charm displaying my initials, DMG. Back in the day of the 1970’s, a simple gold bracelet (no clasp, just a circle of gold)  with a single charm was the rage. Owning a bracelet like that gave status to the person wearing it, at least that was the perception. Only the most popular girls had a bracelet like this! I wasn’t popular. What is important to know is that I did not realize the significance of this bracelet. I never wore jewelry and didn’t ask for jewelry but my grandmother thought it was special for me to have it. The gold bracelet was an incredible gift and I loved it!

I felt so special and loved by my Grandmother each time I wore that bracelet, which was everyday.  Since I wasn’t popular and didn’t care about style (unless my Grandmother coached me) I had no idea that this bracelet would be a source of discontent for someone else. One day, while in the locker room getting ready for gym class, I carelessly turned my back to the belongings in my locker basket. I had taken off the bracelet and placed it inside the basket. When I turned around, the bracelet was gone. The thief was fast and disappeared quickly…but I knew who she was. I reported the crime to the school authorities, but since they couldn’t prove that my bracelet was stolen and not lost (the thief denied the crime) I was out of luck. Even more frustrating was to see her walking down the hall wearing my bracelet with my initials on the charm.

I was seething with resent and bitterness. I chewed on it. I began to savor the sour bitter taste. I choked on that bitter flavor but managed to swallow and digest this feeling with hope that I would take vengeance on that thief.  But the resentful bitterness ended up taking its vengeance in my soul instead. I was miserable and consumed with hate towards that girl.

The heart knows its own bitterness…Proverbs 14:10

A bitter and resentful person is like a contagious poison, spreading his resentment to others. 
(A paraphrase of Deuteronomy 29:18)

And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God…Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.   Ephesians 4:30-32

The bracelet had become a golden idol while that thief was becoming more of a false god, vying for my attention. The only way I could be free from this angst was to surrender my bracelet…that golden idol to God. It was His. It was always His. I gave the bracelet to God numerous times and the more I gave it back, the softer my heart became towards the thief.  I began to pray for her each time I saw her at school and each time I missed the gold bracelet until I didn’t feel the resentful bitterness anymore. I actually had the strange kind of love and compassion for her. God was healing my heart and rescuing me from resentful bitterness and then–God showed me love. My grandmother gave me another gold bracelet, identical to the one now owned by a thief…that girl…needing to feel loved, needing to be rescued.
Years later, I continue to pray for that girl and hope she knows that God loves her and perhaps she has been rescued too. When my daughter was in college, I gave her my treasured bracelet and shared this story with her in hopes that it would be a reminder of God’s rescuing power in her life.  She wears it all the time!
the simple gold bracelet