Congratulations Graduates! Class of 2008!

Each year our church’s school, EL Sobrante Christian School, has graduation ceremonies. Last year, the very FIRST ESCS High School class graduated — the Class of 2007. We also have a ceremony for the 8th graders.

Graduation CapGraduations, milestones, memories, change. I have been to many of these special occasions. The pledge to the flag, student speeches, then speeches by adults. Then maybe a song or two, the reading of all the graduates as they walk across the stage and receive their diplomas.

It’s kind of long, can be a little boring, but never-the-less it is an event that usually is reflected upon as life unfolds.

I am proud of all these graduates. As a Pastor, the call of God somehow seems a little fresher when things are seen — like a graduation ceremony.

But, I’m also no different than anyone reading this blog. We all go through times of victories and of distance in our thoughts. It is really part of life and part of how God wired us. Ultimately, there is a prize. In the marathon of life, I truly WANT to make a difference. And THAT DIFFERENCE MUST include a compass pointing to God’s True North and to my living life to the full — for HIM!

Don’t you realize that in a race everyone runs, but only one person gets the prize? So run to win! All athletes are disciplined in their training. They do it to win a prize that will fade away, but we do it for an eternal prize. So I run with purpose in every step. 1 Corinthians 9:24-26a (NLT)

Iron, Friendship, Caring, and Comfort in 2008

sharpenSo, because we’re brothers in the Lord, do something for me. Give me some comfort because of Christ. Philemon 1:20 (GW)

Here is Paul. He has a great friend, Onesimus. And he misses him greatly.

Have you ever had or needed a friend so close that you could actually be yourself? One that KNOWS YOU. One that CARES much about what you are going through. And you care about them, too, right?

2008. No matter what you are going through right now, no matter what you will find yourself in the future — you should never neglect a close friend. We tend to withdraw and to become this “automatic-garage-door” society. We drive in and shut the door. Then we become an island.

But, we are ripping ourselves off when we do that. God created us to be a blessing to Him AND to others. Just like we need a close friend, they need us.

In the coming year, I plan on facilitating more relationships. I want closer friends. And like Paul, I know they can comfort me, refresh me, and keep me all the more alive.

Proverbs 27:17 tells us that we actually sharpen other by our interaction.