True story…. (Names, except mine, have been changed to protect the innocent)
Debbie’s Journal Entry…February 1977
Dear diary, The boy that I thought might ask me to the Valentine’s Day dance, did not. He asked Jessica. Jessica, the cute cheerleader, who has a million other prospects, said yes and she doesn’t even like him. I hate highschool. I will die if I’m not asked to the dance. How will I ever face everyone Monday morning?
I know. I’ll just make up other plans and pretend I don’t want to go. That’s a good idea. I’ve saved up some babysitting money. I’ll send myself flowers from an out of town admirer. That’s it. Perfect. No-one has to know.
What is his name, his story? He’ll be named Todd. No Todd’s at my school and I do know a Todd so I’ll pretend it’s him. I’ll pretend his family and my family are long time friends and a couple of years ago he and his family moved away. We write letters often and he pines for me. I’ll see him this summer when our families camp together. And Todd will apply to the same colleges I do. No one has to know the truth. This is my secret. This will work. And I don’t even have to face the stupid dance. I would hate it anyway.
Besides it’s only stupid high school. I know it’s a lie, but it won’t hurt anyone. It doesn’t matter. At least this will take the pressure off. High school is stupid anyway.
Letter from God to my sixteen year old self
Dearest daughter, It breaks my heart to see your broken heart. You wear such a brave face. But I see you. I know you. I created you. I love you. It saddens me to watch you go to such lengths to protect that soft vulnerable heart that I formed in you. That lie that you think won’t hurt anyone, will be with you for the rest of your life.
I’ve given you free will, but as your Heavenly Father it pains me to watch you looking for love in all the wrong places. Your innocence and idealism are precious in my sight. The world though, sees your innocence and idealism as an opportunity. You’re an easy target. The world is luring you, training you, influencing you to be enticed by her seductive ways.
Already you’re convinced that being thin and pretty and popular would make the difference. You believe that if you had a boyfriend, then you’d have worth; then you’d have value; then you’d be significant and secure. They are lies. They are all lies.
It grieves me when my sons and daughters insist on learning life lessons the hard way. The world is such a cruel teacher. I know where you are headed.
The world is coaching you to crave its applause and recognition for your achievements. You are smart and capable. That is no surprise to me. I created you. The world is impressed. But knows that you’ll never be satisfied. She is rewarding you with accolades and success. She is cheering you on so you’ll keep striving. She is teasing you to think you can do it all on your own. But her goal is the ultimate sucker punch.
The world’s goal is for you to believe that no matter what, you are never enough. The world’s applause is numbing and recognition is your drug. I, my dear daughter, know the futility of your counterfeit god. That ache deep in your soul cannot be quenched apart from me. The world’s promises are empty. Eventually you will crash and burn resulting in just another devastating blow to that soft vulnerable heart I formed in you. Each blow makes your heart a bit harder.
I’m the one who pines for you. And my love is perfect. Unconditional. Sacrificial. You are my daughter by birth not by your worth. If you could only fathom that! Just imagine? The creator of the universe, the One you laid the foundation of the world, the One who placed the stars in the sky, and numbered the hairs on your head, longs to have a personal relationship with you. You, Deborah Lynn Roeshot, the broken hearted, sixteen year old with braces, big dreams and one hundred twenty pounds of awkward insecurity are my daughter and you’re beautiful in my sight!
Song of Solomon 4:7 “You are altogether beautiful, my darling, beautiful in every way.”
Do you remember the parable of the lost sheep? (Luke 15:3-7). You, dearest daughter have drifted from the flock. I will not rest until you return. I will relentlessly pursue you until you are reconciled to me.
(Jeremiah 29:11) I have plans for you. Plans to prosper you and not to harm you. Plans to give you a hope and a future. Those plans require a vulnerable softened heart. We have work to do. Come back to me beloved.
My daughter, I love you. God
Valentine’s Day 2019
It probably won’t surprise you to know that forty-two years later I still don’t like Valentine’s Day. Even though now I’m happily married, the day reminds me of my painful search for love in all the wrong places. A search that lasted a very long time.
True to His promise, Jesus relentlessly pursued me. Jesus caught me and I fell hard. His grace was irresistible.
But, I’m fickle. I’m human. I’m forgetful.
God’s love letter
The Bible is God’s love letter to me and to you. From Genesis to Revelation it tells of His unrelenting pursuit of us, his creation; a people who have turned their backs on Him and who constantly push Him aside. It is a story of redemption and reconciliation; a story of God’s ultimate sacrifice in order that we might be restored to Him.
And while secondary themes exist, they always reinforce the overarching idea that God loves humanity. More specifically, God loves me; God loves you. 1 John 4:8 “God is love.”
Until you “grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge,” Ephesians 3:16, the rest of life won’t make sense. When you do grasp that truth, you’ll know that you are enough.
In other words, Jesus’ love makes all the difference.
Through the lens of His perfect love, your flawed human relationships make sense. Through the lens of His perfect love your pain, your disappointments and your struggles have purpose. Through the lens of His perfect love that ache to be enough is satisfied.
Thank you Jesus. I love you. It’s good to be back.
Your daughter, Debbie Hucke
Additional Related Supportive Scriptures
Psalm 139:13,14 “For You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother’s womb. I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Marvelous are Your works, And that my soul knows very well.”
Ephesians 3:16-19. “I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18 may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.
Romans 5:8 “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
Romans 8:38-39 “For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”