My small group girls graduated college this weekend.
I can barely take it. My heart is the definition of bittersweet – I am swelling with pride of how they’ve grown into young women, I’m sitting-on-the-edge-of-my- seat excited about their next adventures, and I’m also aching at the end of this season.
It’s been four years of Tuesday nights at 8:30. It’s been countless cups of coffee and salty oat cookies to go with our highs and lows. Each week we piled on couches and looked each other in the eyes and shared dreams and asked hard questions and prayed.
We laughed and went to concerts and had sleepovers and ate meals together. We fell more in love with this man named Jesus, and eventually, we fell in love with each other.
We became a family. All I know is that I now have eight really wonderful, hilarious, amazingly weird, and passionate sisters and friends. And all I did, all any of us did, was choose to show up for each other. Week after week, for four years.
What a gift.
I’ve written them notes and we’ve been talking about this transition for months, but goodness, it feels like such a big one. And, I have a few things left to say – for them, for myself, for anyone walking into something that feels big and uncertain and exciting and terrifying all at the same time:
It is all of those things: uncertain, exciting, terrifying.
And I think it’s supposed to be. Such is a life of faith.
When the disciples asked Jesus where he was going, he didn’t give them a roadmap or a 10-step plan. He offered Himself.
“I am the Way, the Truth, the Life.”
He is the best thing. He is better than accomplishments or getting your dream job or life working out exactly as you plan. He is your ultimate reward.
Follow Him. Walk with Him, and He’ll lead you right where you are, right where you need to be.
Once you’re there? Dive in.
Just like we did with each other for four years, show up. Fully, in your right-now, daily life. Right where you are, for the people you’re with, for the work God puts in your hands.
Don’t wait for your real life to start once you’ve got it all figured out. No one has it all figured out.
Your real life is happening, go live it.
Remember where you true identity lies.
It’s not in performance, success, failure, relationship status or titles. It’s not in approval, number of likes, or possessions.
You are Beloved. You are a daughter. You are His. You belong.
Choose compassion over comparison. Don’t look to the right or to the left – everyone is on a journey. Fix your eyes on Jesus.
Remember that everyone is carrying a story. Be kind – to others, to yourself.
Take risks, see the world, dance in your kitchen, laugh often.
Look others in the eye and listen. Let them teach you, mold you, grow you.
Love Jesus with all you have, and empty yourself to love others.
This is life, in all of its beauty and wrestling and mountain-tops and valleys.
You’re gonna love it.