Dear Graduate…

Twelve years ago I graduated from high school.

Now if you’re a teen reading this…you’re thinking I’m old right now. Twelve years is a long time, but you’ll be here before you know it, friend! So pick your jaw up from the floor and put your eyeballs back into your head.

This is kind of like a letter to all my young friends graduating. High school graduation is a big milestone. It’s hard work to get through school. The culture of it alone can be torturous.

So here it is, graduates….my perspective. What would I say to myself twelve years ago? Learn from my mistakes and jump ahead of the game!

Dear Graduate,

You’re embarking on the journey of a lifetime. It will be thrilling. It will be amazing. It may even be scary at times. But your Guide will never be far away and He is orchestrating each leg of the road ahead. Four things I would say to you above all else:

  1. Trust HIM. There will be days of heartache and pain and unexplained circumstances. This is life in our fallen, broken world. No matter how difficult or rough the journey, remember that He is Faithful. He is worthy of your trust. He is capable of holding your heart…even when it is breaking. He is the only unchanging One and the only One Who will always be there, always be near, always smiling and singing over you. Trust Him. Fully. Freely. With all of yourself, trust Him.
  2. Learn to say NO to things that don’t really matter. Say no to things that will bog you down and threaten your walk with Christ. Say NO to things that will clog your heart from the truth of God’s Word. Say NO to the things that aren’t God’s best for you. Often, the good things in life will keep you from the best, friend. Always reach for the BEST.
  3. Love people well. You will meet a lot of different kind of people in life…some will be easy to love and others won’t even be likeable. Choose to put on Jesus and love people well. All people. Broken people. People that aren’t like you. People who rub you wrong. Love people like Jesus does and you will change the world.
  4. Never let your fearful NOs stand in the way of your impossibilities for Jesus. The biggest obstacles to doing great, impossible things for God are when we let fear get the best of us and say NO. Don’t say no to Him. It may look ridiculously impossible…but that’s His business. And quite frankly, He enjoys the impossible. I have found in my own life when I say NO it’s because of fear: fear or rejection by family and friends, fear of the unknowns, fear of the outcome, fear of failure, and on and on. I wish I could say I always said yes to Him…but sadly, I do not always follow obediently. Those choices are some of my most regretted. Yes, there is grace and forgiveness, but I just can’t help wondering what life would have been like if I would have said YES.

In short, SAY YES to Jesus. Always say yes to Jesus.

Life isn’t one giant leap after another…it is small steps. Take each small step in His direction and amazing, impossible things will happen.

There will be thousands of things people say to you about these next few years of life…and to some degree, they may expect or even encourage you to throw wisdom out the door and “find yourself”, which really means “be selfish”. I’m saying the opposite. Dig in. Make His Word your number one textbook. Go deep with Jesus in these foundational years. Do hard things. It’s ok to be different from the world…to go against the flow for the sake of Christ. You have what it takes… I know that about you. You have determination, zeal and a love for life that will take you far if you use it for God’s glory.

Being radically in love with Him will change your heart AND everyone who comes in contact with you. John Wesley said, “Set yourself on fire with passion and people will come for miles to watch you burn.” I’m in agreement…so all that to say—Get on fire…for Jesus.

Today is the day, graduate. Get on fire!

Sincerely, A friend who’s been there before

One Comment on “Dear Graduate…

  1. So very true. The older you get, the faster it goes, until you near the end, and it will drag, because your body can’t keep up with your will to keep going, and you’re just waiting to go Home and be with Jesus.


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