As an assignment for a project, participants are to write themselves an encouraging note.  Not to someone else.  To themselves.  Challenge accepted – a day late because, well, it’s harder than you think.

Dear Derek.
I’m sure you feel like an idiot for writing a letter to yourself for encouragement. After all, there are others who encourage you and, well, you don’t need your head to swell any bigger than it is. Unlike Casey Lewis, you are not that good looking, but you have other things going well for you.

First off, while you are not perfect, you allow others to see just where you are, including your missteps, on your faith journey. You don’t always get it right, but Jesus is still pretty damn happy with you. And He doesn’t actually mind that you said the “d-word” for effect.

Secondly, you encourage others well. It seems to come more naturally than encouraging yourself or (worse) allowing others to encourage you. You’re more intentional about receiving encouragement from others than you used to be. Stay with that. I think you secretly like it.

Third, your DNA made some adorable daughters that will require a wrap-around porch, some firearms, and gun cleaning equipment. What can I say? Sure, their mother helped a bit, but it’s your contribution that made them daughters after all. #own it.

Finally, although you’re new at the whole counseling thing and, originally, addictions scared the piss out of you, you’re doing well with it. Really well. While your boss thought well enough to suggest you consider replacing him in 5 years or so as the director, I think you’d rather be maintaining a client base than managing a business. We’re still shooting for our own practice, right? Good. That’s what I thought.

After you graduate, you still have a lot of hustle to do, but that’s okay. The heavy lifting of the four years of school is almost over. Now it’s just business. And you’ve got some folks in your corner for that. Good people. Dreamers. And builders. Just like you. They’re awesome, too.

Make sure you thank them in your memoir. By name, some of them. Because that’s important to you. Names are important. It says you care. And you do. Really.

Okay, I guess that’s it. So long. And thanks for all the fish.


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