Students: This is a scary time for you all. Some of you are just hoping you pass your senior government class. Others don’t have a clue what you want to do with your future. It feels like a time of uncertainty; because it is. It is a blind leap of faith into the unknown abyss. In truth, it is a chance to pay for $4.00 a gallon gas on a $5.15 an hour job at McDonald’s. And so, you stand here, at the very edge of a new world; long-anticipated for many, long overdue for others, long feared by most.
You are no longer children, and yet many of you will never leave home.
In the midst of this season of change, you will desire comfort from your mommy and daddy. What you really need is God’s presence more than ever. You will beg to be accepted into colleges. You will pray to be prepared for tests. You will long to be hired into Fortune 500 companies in order to pay off your outrageous student loans taken for important classes like Art Appreciation & Step Aerobics.
Do you understand the mounting responsibilities and building burdens that come with this time of your life? If so, weep silently among yourselves.
Parents: This is a bitter time; one that has been in the making from the moment your child was born and you received the hospital bill, doctor’s bill, and epidural charges – none of which were fully covered by your HMO.
In the past 18 years, you were sickened by dirty diapers and cried over spilled milk. You cringed as your toddler learned to crawl – realizing your own freedom was about to come to an end. You locked your cabinets and tied doors shut. As the youth learned to walk and then run, you mended scraped knees, paid for broken bones and broken windows. You were in doctor’s offices more than you care to admit and learned the true meaning of peanut allergies and lactose intolerance.
But today is not a time for looking back. Today is a time of reaching deep into your pockets and paying for the student loans and college bills that will be a burden to you and your child for the next 10 years.
It is a time to celebrate the success and growth of your neighbor’s child as you visit the principle again for the 3rd time this month.
It is a time to acknowledge God’s sovereign hand and wonder why it didn’t touch your child.
It is a time to release and trust God like never before because you’ve given up ever figuring out the rhyme or reason behind your own child rebellious nature.
These men and women have traveled an amazing distance in the past 18 years. And for many of you, there is fear that the journey ends here.
This is a sobering reality that represents many sleepless nights crying about these lives of dependency and lost opportunity.
Do you agree that the only hope that these you love find a place in military school? If so, sign here on the dotted line.
Congregational Response (To be read in unison with heart & feeling):
Your parents’ fears are valid.
Your own anguish is true.
The best that we can offer,
Is a prayer from us for you.
Best Wishes Graduates!