Happy Birthday! It is easy to celebrate all the wonderful things you are: Christ-like, talented, creative, loving, kind, smart, pretty. I wish that you could see in you what I do. I see the fears that are fighting to steal that light. I wish I could hide you from those anxieties and protect you from the things that try to steal your joy. However, that isn't truly my job. My job is to teach you to turn to the only One who can take away all your worries, and protect you from anything that comes against you.
My job is to remind you that He alone can truly bring comfort and peace. My words can only be a poor imitation of His, but as long as I have breath my prayer is to point you to Him. In everything, big and small. I keep telling you that things won't get easier, not to frighten you, but to say that now is the time to fully trust Him. Your dad and I do our best to be a loving, safe haven for you, but we are flawed. We will let you down, frustrate you, at times we will even hurt you, because we too are humans. But if I only teach you one thing let it be this: You can trust Jesus fully. He will never let you down, He will never hurt you, He will unconditionally, eternally love you. He will always be there.
Life isn't fair. Life isn't for the faint of heart. But Jesus can help you learn to live without fear-only imitate me as I imitate Him. My hope has never been to have a daughter that takes after me, but rather one that takes after her heavenly Father. Perhaps one day, instead of hearing that you are like me, people will say that I am like you, as you follow after Jesus completely, unashamedly, without any reservations. That would bring me more joy than anything I can think of. This is my constant prayer for you as you navigate the complexities that maturing brings:
"Look to the Lord and His strength; seek His face always." Psalm 105:4If you can grasp this now, during these tumultuous, coming-of-age, times you will find true success. I could not care less if you are famous, or rich, or even happy. None of those things matter, what truly matters is knowing that you are worth so much to Christ that He gave His life for *you*. And you were created to "glorify Him and enjoy Him forever". You do not have to wait to be a "grown-up", whatever that means, to do those things. Christ is fully in you now-You have complete access to every promise in Him that you ever will. Don't wait to follow Him without reservations. Today is the day! And all I want you to know is I am behind you, cheering for you, praying for you, and at many times, learning from your example. Jesus is all you will ever need. And it is my honor to be able to remind you of that when you need to hear it. I love you.