Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Caps and Gowns not Required!

“For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face.”

1 Corinthians 13:12

We are great, we are fun, and we’re the class of ’81!

Cheesy, yes. But thirty-one years ago, it was a cool thing to yell.

Back then, I walked across a stage and accepted a diploma as a member of the Van Horn High School class of 1981. I believe we were 35 strong. Yesterday, I watched as my nephew Hunter walked across a stage in the middle of a football field. He comes from a class of 378.

Vast are the differences between the two experiences, but similarities exist, too. A group of eighteen-year-olds who don’t really know what they want in life celebrate a milestone, sit through endless speakers and restlessly tap their feet to leave and attend parties.

The songs the seniors performed today inspired me as did the student speakers. Two did a tag team speech in which they talked about how the four years had changed them. Both started high school in difficult health and family situations, but yesterday they stood healthy, determined and headed for college. I thought of Hunter who battles diabetes and has not let it stop him from being a football player, wrestler, musician, leader and all around great guy. Yep, I’m a proud aunt.

So as my vivid imagination absorbed the day’s events, I thought, “I wonder how God sees graduations?” I have a feeling that if God showed up in bodily form at a graduation, he’d look like a proud parent, video camera in one hand, tissues in the other. When one of his kids’ names were called, He’d stand up and cheer and pull the trigger on one of those blaring air-horns, so his children know He’s there.

Graduations don’t happen every day for any of us, but milestones in the kingdom of God occur often. A friend of mine is standing up to an abusive ex-husband and guarding her heart. There goes the air-horn! My husband attended a meeting at work yesterday in which someone irritated him to his breaking point. He held his tongue. God claps His hands and whistles! An innocent child, a rebellious teenager and a discouraged adult each bow their heads and whisper, “Help me, God.” The heavens go crazy and God reaches for His camera and the tissues.

I wish you and I could grasp how much the Father cheers for us. Always. Not just in that big moment when we achieve a goal or make a major move in our lives. But also in those instances when we make the choices that define who we are. We take an extra moment to say thank you. We give a little time and effort to someone who needs it. We are alone and decide to forgive instead of build a grudge. Heavenly air-horns go off even if we hear nothing.

Someday I think we will see and hear as we can’t today. Imagine with me: we will each move our tassels from left to right, throw up our worldly caps in the air and celebrate. Oh, what a party that will be! The first one through the crowd to give hugs and congratulate us will be Him…face to face. Woot!! Air-horn!

1 comment:

Cheryl Barker said...

Robbie, I had to forgive just this morning rather than allow bitterness to grow. Love how you show God cheering us on in momemts like those!