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Things I Would Tell My 18-Year-Old Self

by Tania Harris

It takes longer than you expect.God’s timing is agonisingly slow. There are times when you will find yourself yelling at him in sheer frustration and resentment. The main reason for your angst is that you think God’s timing is only about you.

But you are far too small-minded. God is always planning, strategizing and orchestrating to involve others – some of whom you don’t even know yet. He is thinking years down the track. He is planning for variables that you cannot begin to conceive right now.

One day you will understand the reasons for his apparent slowness. But for now, it’s best not to try to manipulate his promises. Let the timing go, grow in patience and trust him.

It is harder than you think. You don’t realise that when you pray those radical ‘surrender-prayers’ that God will take them very, very seriously. That he will literally ask you for everything. Your home, your friends, your money; your deepest desires. The steps of obedience will be more painful than you can imagine, but they will become your deepest sources of joy. They will open wide doors of opportunity and of profound self-discovery that will transform you forever. You will see that they are necessary to form you into the person you were created to be. You will never regret them.

It is better than you could ever imagine. You want to make a difference. You want your life to be significant. That’s great.

But the greater thing is that God has a future for you that extends way beyond how you think right now. Your dreams are so limited. The thoughts you have are locked in by your past experiences and they will always be confined by what you see around you.

Unlike you, God sees into the realm of the supernatural; his plans are not bound by earthly constraints. He lives in a place where there are no impossibilities. As you partner with him, your dream will grow and change in ways that will leave you breathless and in awe.

Never give up following him. Seek him first. Every step you take, every act of obedience; every sacrifice – will be well worth it. You will receive deeply personal gifts  from God that will stir you to tears; you will experience miracle stories that will make you laugh and you will enjoy rich fulfillment at the core of your being. And you will find that knowing God personally and hearing his voice will be the greatest reward of all.

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