Tuesday, December 29, 2015

At Seventeen....

Valerie J. Steimle

Seventeen is just the beginning of most everyone’s adult life. For some they see others as the world sees them. For others, they plow through and make their own way on their own terms. The world looks upon the outer shell of a person and judges success. Outer beauty doesn't matter; it's what is on the inside that counts.

This is what I taught my children when they were teenagers. Meaning, when you want to find a boy friend or girl friend, it doesn’t matter what you look like from what God gave you as a body, it’s what is inside that matters.  The same goes for what you see in others. Let’s face it, teenagers are shallow. What they see in beauty magazines is what they want in real life no matter what we sacrifice to get us looking that way.  The world shows us what is beautiful on the outside and teenagers want it.

We can tell how others feel about themselves by their countenance.  It is amazing how our thinking can be the window of our faces.  It can either help us or hurt us in what we feel to be important. For example, what is more important is how you place family, career and money in your life.  It is much more important to spend time with your family than spend too much time at the office over all.

If only the world would be more interested in how a person helped others instead of how beautiful their appearance.  This would set the example for the younger generation and we would have more good deeds done instead of those waiting for their “15 minutes” of fame.

 Everyone knows and likes to be with someone happy; someone who is excited and motivated to do good things in their life.  This person makes us feel good about ourselves.  The whole world seems to be a better place when we spend time with people who are happy and content with who they are and what their mission is in life.

When I was seventeen, a young singer by the name of Janis Ian recorded a song about being seventeen. It was so appropriate for where I was at that time in my life and explains exactly how many girls feel at this age, I’m posting the words here:

At Seventeen
“I learned the truth at seventeen
That love was meant for beauty queens
And high school girls with clear-skinned smiles
Who married young and then retired
The valentines I never knew
The Friday night charades of youth
Were spent on one more beautiful
At seventeen I learned the truth
And those of us with ravaged faces
Lacking in the social graces
Desp'rately remained at home
Inventing lovers on the phone
Who called to say "Come dance with me"
And murmured vague obscenities
It isn't all it seems at seventeen
A brown eyed girl in hand-me-downs
Whose name I never could pronounce
Said, "Pity, please, the ones who serve
They only get what they deserve.
The rich relationed hometown queen
Marries into what she needs
A guarantee of company
And haven…
At seventeen”
Janis Ian

The lyrics are somewhat depressing because there is no hope at the end.  Hope is what all people need to keep motivated during the trials and tribulations. From an email comes a prayer to those around us who need hope:
“May there be peace within you today.  May you trust that you are exactly where you are meant to be. May you not forget the infinite possibilities that are born of faith in yourself and others. May you use the gifts that you have received, and pass on the love that has been given you. May you be content with yourself just the way you are.  Let this knowledge settle into your bones and allow your soul the freedom to sing, dance, praise and love.  It is there for each and every one of us.”

We can have hope and not follow what the world tells us.  Inner beauty is the most important and what we do with our time on earth and how we treat other people are the true indications of beauty.

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