You’re Where You Need To Be

​Doing Life Together: A Message for My 21-Year Old Self

#1 You’re Where You Need to Be

Have you ever wanted to have a little chat with your 21-year old self? Any life lessons you’d share?

I turned 21 the summer before my senior year at Pacific Lutheran University, the one school I did not want to
go to!

I’d grown up two short blocks from PLU. And being so close, I’d played in campus trees in second grade, sold
Camp Fire mints in the commons, biked the trails in middle school. I’d also been scolded for playing in the trees
and escorted off campus during the “No Bikes” era. And I’d balked at having to sell candy to strangers.
Graduating high school, I’d wanted to get away ~ to any school but PLU.

Mom and Dad wanted my college life to include a little restraint and guidance, but I wanted no one telling me
what to do and how to do it, not at 8 years old and certainly not at 18.

At the corner of 121st Street and Park Avenue in Parkland, Washington, are PLU and Trinity Lutheran Church,
the church in which I grew up. Yep, right across the street from the church where I was baptized and
confirmed, where I was a Christmas angel and a Sunday School teacher, where God surrounded me with His
restraint and His guidance.

When college decisions were being made, I focused on getting away. God used the determined efforts of my
parents to get me where my defiant self needed to be, coming alongside me and showing me His way.
Where has God directed and redirected you in your own travels in life? What messages do you have for your
own 21-year old self? How did earlier challenges shape you? Help you grow up?


Today’s lesson, today’s experience, even today’s misstep can become tomorrow’s wisdom,

and we all benefit from wisdom ~ yours, mine, and ours.

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Deanna Nowadnick

Deanna Nowadnick

Speaker | Writer | Author


Deanna Nowadnick

Before my father died, he reminded me that Mom had asked me to write a book. At the time the boys were in college, and the notion of writing was unfathomable. Writers write books. By the time my boys were adults, I’d run out of excuses. I was also at that age when I could pause and reflect.

Fruit of My Spirit: Reframing Life in God’s Grace was my first publishing endeavor. My second was Signs in Life: Finding Direction in Our Travels with God. Both are collections of stories that tell of God’s love and faithfulness. Both tell of His remarkable grace and mercy.

When not writing, I serve as the Client Service Coordinator for The Planner’s Edge, an investment advisory firm in Washington state. I’m active in my church, serving on the Leadership Team and gathering with a wonderful group of ladies to study and giggle over lattes and chocolate. On my desk is a rock with the words “Choose Joy!” etched in it. It’s my inspiration for each day. As an author, it is my hope that my own words might share that joy we find together as children of God.

With Him, it can be so.


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