Celebrating a Rite of Passage

Gratitude Day 276

Tues., May 28, 2019

Proverbs 16:3– Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and your plans will succeed.

It’s been a great few days.

High School Graduation. Celebrations. Cousins visiting. Playing cards. Meaningful conversations. Lots and lots of good food.

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Last Friday, my youngest nephew, Kevin, graduated from high school. Hubby Rick and I, as well as the rest of our family, celebrated with him over the weekend.

High school graduation is truly a rite of passage. One of those important life accomplishments. A line in the sand between youth and adulthood.

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Kevin graduated from the same high school that I did … a million years ago. I had not been to a graduation ceremony in this school gym in many years. It was a little surreal to sit in the bleachers and watch the Augusta High School class of 2019 graduate. It brought back memories:

  • High school friends that I still keep in touch with. And those I have less contact with.
  • Names of favorite teachers who taught and encouraged me.
  • As the band played “Pomp and Circumstance,” I recalled playing the exact same music.
  • The large fans positioned behind the stage where we sat. Breezes from the fans lifting the pages from the commencement address I would share off the chair where I would sit on which they had been carefully placed. Each of the speakers trying to locate the pages of our individual addresses after we were seated on the stage.
  • Walking to receive a diploma.

High school graduation is one of many rites of passage: baptism, confirmation, graduation, marriage. And then, there are the “unofficial” rites of passage as well: first kiss, mowing the lawn, driver’s license, opening your own bank account, purchasing a home, being present when someone dies, first flight on an airplane. All these rites of passage are significant, important and meaningful.

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Life is full of these moments as well as many every day, ordinary things as well. In the 50+ years of my life, I have pondered so many times:

“What does God want me to do?”

“How do I handle this situation?”

“What direction should my life take?”

“Am I following God’s will for my life?”

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Kevin will ask himself these, and countless similar questions, many times in his life. I continue to explore these questions and other deeply meaningful ones on a daily basis. As believers, this is what we should do: seek and desire God’s leading, guidance and influence in our lives. Every. Single. Day.

I have made mistakes. Kevin may someday look back at a choice and wished he had made a slightly different choice. This. Is. OK. Why? If we commit to God our desires and choices and wishes of our heart, someway, somehow God will honor these choices and the plan will be supported by God. Even when we make a decision or choice that might not be God’s first choice, God can help steer our lives in a slightly (or not so slightly) different direction and take what we’ve chosen and make something amazing and great happen.

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Yes, there will and is disappointment. Heartache. The desire for do-overs. In these moments, I have often discovered this is when I grow the most. Learn something new about myself. Discover that I have abilities beyond what I imagined. God can and will use all of this for something wonderful … if we only trust God enough to allow it to so be.

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No matter what stage of life you find yourself in these days, celebrate it. Throw yourself a little party for the latest accomplishment you felt good about. And go right back to God and ask God to continue paving the path before you.

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Congrats, Kevin, on all the many, many things you’ve accomplished. You will do great things. Just please, take God along in your journey.

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For observing another person journey through a significant rite of passage gracefully, I am grateful.

Lord God – We celebrate the people near and dear to our hearts who have accomplished a significant rite of passage. Inspire these people to be all that they can be. Encourage them to seek your heart as they make life decisions and choices. Thank you for consistently blessing the plans we make in consultation with you. Amen.

Blessings –

Dianne

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