In honor of Women’s Month, each writer will be writing our EmpowerMoments full of encouragement and lessons to our younger selves in a series titled Notes From Me To Me. Sit back and enjoy our reflections, and also think about what would you say to your younger self.
Has your mother ever told you, “If I knew then what I know now, I would not have made the mistakes that I made?” Well that’s only part of my story. There were mistakes I made that shaped me into the woman I am today and there are mistakes that could have been avoided. Regardless if I should or shouldn’t have made the mistakes, I cannot turn back the hands of time. Your teenage years were full of excitement and trouble.
At 15, you didn’t tell our parents the truth about where you were going and ended up in a house with a bunch of older guys that you didn’t know. “My friend,” who you were with left and went with her boyfriend. There were so many thoughts going through your mind- “What if they rape me? What if they drug me? What if they kill me?” At one point, you felt as if they all were surrounding you trying to see which one would have their way with you first. Of course, you couldn’t call anyone because you wasn’t where you said you were going. Oh, but who knew God had His hands on you even then. One of the young guys told the others to leave you alone and just let you leave. Needless to say, you left and never returned. That was the day you learned to never let someone leave you somewhere you may feel threatened and always tell someone where you are going. For He will command His angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways. (Psalms 91:11, ESV)
You always saw yourself as a leader. “I make my own decisions and I do stuff because I want to,” you say. Remember, you went to the mall with some friends. You didn’t realize that you were a little naïve and sheltered, but you were. Who knew that our friends didn’t have any money and they got all the latest brands from the “five finger discount”. At first you were staying away from them but after the second trip to the car, you wanted in. You were so afraid you were shocked you didn’t get everybody locked up. Needless to say you tried stealing and ended up with mix match shoes and a shirt that was too small. You were so ashamed you kept the merchandise for a while as a reminder of how stupid it was to steal. That was the day you learned to have your own mind and never let others influence you to do things that you know could lead you in trouble. Also, be okay with being different, that’s how you were designed. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.(Romans 12: 2, ESV)
Thank You for protecting me even when I didn’t realize I needed protecting. God, I thank You for covering me from dangers that were self- inflicted. I am grateful that You chose me and had plans for me even as a teenager. God, I pray that whoever is reading this is empowered to make better choices and to realize that they are special in Your sight. In Jesus Name, Amen
Ladies, I EMPOWER you to be okay with being different and not a part of the “in crowd”. I EMPOWER you to be the best you at all times because God has plans for you.
Keviyona Ray is an ordained minister and co-pastor in training of The Christ For All People International Church. She is passionate about sharing the word of God with everyone she encounters. As a professional, Keviyona is a teacher for Chicago Public Schools. She loves her ministry of teaching and changing children’s lives. She is a devoted wife and mother of a wonderful daughter. Two of her favorite scriptures are Jeremiah 1: 5: “Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations” and Proverbs 29:18: “Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he.