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Crystal’s Story

 
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This book is dedicated to all the teenagers who
are often prematurely judged because of their
age and their external appearance.
May those of us who call ourselves
adults see past these things.
Above all else,
let us look for their hearts,
and when we find them,
let us listen intently.
May we stop continuing to heap upon teenagers
layers of behaviors and belief systems
that only hide the true beauty
which they were created
with from the beginning.
Teenagers are a gift to this world.
Will we embrace them?

Introduction
Here is the second book in the series, Journeys of the Heart Crystal’s Story. This book is especially meaningful to me because I love teenagers. My years in high school were full of many great memories.
The teenage years can be an exciting time for some, but for many it’s everything but that. Often it is a very scary time. So much change is going on with their bodies, their environments, and their relationships. There’s an awkward tension in growing up from being a child to a young adult. Adolescents are not always sure whether they want to keep moving forward or retreat back to childhood. I can understand and relate to all of those feelings.
Crystal found herself having to face many of these same challenges. In my first book, Journeys of the Heart Mary’s Story, it ended with Crystal telling her mom that she had been molested by Grandpa, Mary’s dad, as a little girl. Since his recent death, Crystal was plagued with flashbacks of those times with Grandpa. Crystal’s heart was crying out to be seen, heard, loved, and accepted for who she was, not for what Grandpa tried making her to be.
Crystal’s life took a radical turn as a 15-year-old during her sophomore year. She discovered that as a result of some deep healing she received regarding the abuse, she was now being drawn towards her peers, especially those kids many labeled as the outcasts or on the fringe. These teens were often marked as such because of their outward appearance or behaviors. They were misunderstood because of certain beliefs they held and didn’t fit into the boxes of conformity that society or culture had created. They were judged regularly, and their hearts suffered because of it.
You know who I’m talking about, don’t you? Are you a teen who doesn’t quite fit in to any of the “acceptable” cliques at your school? Are you often left feeling as if you were on the outside looking in only because you didn’t have the looks, or the brains, or the athleticism? Maybe you didn’t have the clothes, or the money, or a car to drive your friends around in.
Ironically for Crystal, she did have the looks and the brains but chose not to hang out with the popular kids. She saw through their judgmental attitudes placed upon the “haves” and the “have-nots.” Because her heart was sensitive, Crystal was offended by the way she saw others treated for such superficial reasons. Her heart was drawn to love and accept those who didn’t fit in with the majority. She discovered that the unlovable kids around her became the easiest ones to love.
Come join me and Crystal in the journey with her heart.

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