On January 5, 2014, a twelve year old girl died from complications with pneumonia. As her devastated parents went through her belongings, they found she had written several letters to friends. In those letters, she had written one to herself. The envelope said, “To be opened by Taylor Smith on: April 13, 2023 ONLY!” They opened it and shared it with others. I won’t tell you everything it said, but if you’d like to read it all, I’ll post a link at the bottom of this devotion.
The paragraph that caught my attention from this tween talking to her 22 year old self said, “I was in Cranks, Kentucky for my first mission trip. I’ve only been back for 6 days! Speaking of, how’s your relationship with God? Have you prayed, worshipped, read the bible, or gone to serve The Lord recently? If not, get up and do so NOW! I don’t care what point in our life we’re in right now, do it! He was mocked, beaten, tortured, and crucified for you! A sinless man, who never did you or any other person wrong!”
She finished the letter with, “But remember, it’s been 10 years since I wrote this. Stuff has happened, good and bad. That’s just how life works, and you have to go with it.” I was moved by the whole letter, but these parts in particular. Her words to herself were meant to be read in private, but I’m glad they’re in the open now. Who knows what her life might have been like? She didn’t know, but she knew that life had it’s ups and it’s downs and that she would face them. She also knew what was most important in life: a relationship with God.
Words are powerful. We have so many opportunities to speak life into others. We can build them up by just offering a few words of kindness and encouragement. You never know what someone else is truly facing and how impactful your words can be. Proverbs 25:11 says, “The right word at the right time is like a custom made piece of jewelry.” One version says they’re like “apples of gold in settings of silver.” They’re beautiful. They’re life changing. You have the ability and opportunity to speak into your own life or of others each day. Let the words you choose be the right ones.
The link to the full letter is here.