I was checking email the other day when a sender name caught my attention: “Note to self.” 

Naturally, I thought it was a spam email. But, the subject line revealed it was an email from my email account because I happened to be included on the listserve. I’m grateful for Microsoft 365 for its intentional wording.

It’s caused me to ponder, what would I say if I were to send a note to myself? What would 25-year-old Matthew implore me to remember and not give up on? What would 90 (presumptive I know)-year-old Matthew advise on the state of the world? What might he suggest I hold onto and cherish? What would your note to yourself say?

It’s an interesting thought experiment to explore. The truth is, I think we carry wisdom within that we often don’t give witness to. So, if we were to write a note to ourselves, I think we may just come to discover that the notes that would be most impactful and significant to our present-day selves would be filled with wisdom and freedom to trust what we know to be true in our present lives. 

One of my favorite singer-songwriters, Ben Rector, has a song entitled “Note to Self.” His lyrics reveal the wisdom path found throughout our ordinary everyday lives. 

“Note to self, don’t let yourself worry quite as much; it’ll end up fine enough; it always has up until now. Somethin’ else, you should think of other people a little more; you shoulda thought of that before. One more thing, call your mother back, talk for too long; it’s probably half of what she’d like; she’s the only mother that you have. Maybe one day, I’ll figure out you don’t find peace until you love somebody else. Note to self.” 

Should we never get around to writing such a note, may we use Ben’s words as a guide. For I believe they will not only orient us to the holiness found in the everyday, but they will point us towards the path of wisdom.

Rev. Matthew Ruffner is the Senior Pastor at Preston Hollow Presbyterian Church. He is a husband to Sarah Ruffner and a father of two. You can follow Matthew on Instagram at @thisismatthewruffner and visit PHPC.org to watch the church’s live stream and listen to sermons.


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