Dear Graduate

Dear high school graduates,

I’m back in the home where I grew up. Sitting in my rocking chair that Luke painted me. Reminiscing on four years at a place that molded me.

If you are a soon to be freshman in college, I’m writing this for you.

I remember packing up my things, loading the car, kissing my dogs good bye, and embarking on a life changing journey to my university town. We arrived and my family helped me unload and decorate my room. I hugged and kissed them goodbye, shut the dorm door and realized I was alone. This was my opportunity to become independent. My time to figure out who I am, what I believe in, what I desire to do. I’ll be honest, that first day, I crawled in my bed and cried. I was overwhelmed.

But, can I tell you…. my tears met my pillow the first night and the very last night in that university town.

Scared for what was ahead, and now so sad to leave it all behind.

These four years are vital for who you are going to be. The decisions you make help create a foundation for your future life. It sounds intimidating, and at times it is, but God has taught me so much and I know He will do the same for you.

So here are a couple of tips that I have for you in regards to dorm life:

1. Don’t worry too much about getting expensive decor because if you’re like me, your style will change around junior year.

2. Be gentle with your words to those who you live with and everyone around you. I was young in my thinking, and still am, but have grown in this area. Think about others first before you speak.

3. Clean your side of everything because nothing is worse than a roommate who leaves stuff everywhere.

4. Have a lot of dance parties, this is important for your sanity.

Here’s my advice for your studies:

1. Balance. Balance time with friends and your studies.

2. Do NOT pull all nighters. This will just be a domino effect, everything will spiral…your emotions, health and grades.

3. Save some of your easier classes for your last semester.

4. Time management is important. Don’t wait til the last minute…this is coming from someone who is a genius but only a genius in procrastinating. Maybe I would’ve been an actual genius if I didn’t procrastinate?

Here’s my advice for your friendships:

1. Invest in everyone who crosses your path. Also side note- don’t worry what others think about you. Be friends to those who are often overlooked.

2. Don’t give just because you want to receive. This is something that goes well with the next list of advice as well. Give expecting nothing in return in terms of service.

3. Write down your memories (this is important).

4. Take a lot of photos!

Here’s my advice for those who are high school sweethearts:

1. Be patient and listen to the other well.

2. Love them through the changes. And be confident in who you are to the other.

3. Communicate well and be slow to anger, compassionate during mistakes and hold close to them. There’s a reason you’re each other’s best friend. Practice not being jealous and express your feelings in a healthy manner.

4. Make decisions that glorify Jesus, even when it’s hard or hurts. Sacrifice without compromising each other’s dreams.

Here’s my advice for your relationship with Jesus:

1. Invest in a nice Bible that you can read, write on, and highlight.

2. Write down your prayers! It’s so special and sweet to see them throughout the years.

3. Thank Jesus through and for everything. Seriously. Even the painful moments.

4. Trust in Him. He’s got you. His plan is perfect.

Here are some scriptures for you to keep close to your heart during these next four years:

Jeremiah 29:11-13

“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will hear you. You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart.”

Psalm 147:3

“He heals the brokenhearted

    and binds up their wounds.”

1 Corinthians 10:12-13

“Therefore let anyone who thinks that he stands take heed lest he fall. No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.”

Philippians 2:3-4

“Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.”

Proverbs 17:27

“Whoever restrains his words has knowledge,

    and he who has a cool spirit is a man of understanding.”

Psalm 5:3

“O Lord, in the morning you hear my voice;

    in the morning I prepare a sacrifice for you and watch.”

1 Timothy 6:12

“Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called and about which you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses.”

Oh, and one last tip. Every class as you exit, say “Thank you!” to your professor. Even if they don’t hear you. I think that’s how I ended with a 4.0 this semester (not overall don’t get too excited). I am so excited for you, you’ll love this new season. Special shout out to my little sister, Sydney.

Thank you for reading,

Tay Ruth

One response to “Dear Graduate”

  1. Cindy Welgoss says:

    Beautiful- again! You are precious Tay, and sharing insights that are so very important to recent graduates and those of us who graduated … ah hem… years ago! Love you! Cindy

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