May 18, 2019 05:00am
Letter to the Class of 2019

Dear high school graduate,

I see your smiling face, your parents’ arms thrown around you, hugging you tightly, and I know what your parents are thinking…we made it!

Maybe you don’t think it’s fair for them to take some of the credit; after all, you were the one who studied for the test, wrote those essay questions, read that boring book, and wrote page after page of notes trying to guess what might be on those essay tests.

You were the one who had to get up early, make sure you had your homework with you, pack a lunch, remind your mom of your schedule so she would pick you up on time, and remember to bring that thing you had to get signed by a parent.

It was you that had to stay for basketball practice after school, rehearse for the spring play from 8:00-10:00 every night and on Saturdays for two weeks before the performance, and sit on the bench while other people got to play the whole game.

Of course, you were the one who made that science display, bought that notebook with all those sections for your Nazi English teacher, created that project with dozens of different leaves, and learned how to make a papier mâché globe for history.

Yep, those were all your accomplishments, your sweaty clothes, your memorization of lines, your test scores, your awards for good citizenship, and your trophy for the district championship.

But I guess really you might have had some help or even a little advice. Maybe you were hard to get out of bed unless you had, let’s call it, “intervention”? Or is it possible that you almost forgot that thing you had to get signed, but someone ran out the door to give it to you?

It’s even possible that someone drove you to all those practices and rehearsals, bought the display board, glue, and basketball shoes, and stayed up late making that costume or washing those sweaty clothes you needed the very next day. 

Your parents may not have taken that test, but I guarantee they worried and maybe even prayed until they knew your score. They also felt sick right along with you when you had to sit there, embarrassed, while the coach ignored you on the bench.

That’s just what parents do.

Oh, I’m sure you realize all those things, especially when you know other kids who don’t have supportive parents, the kind who give up their own time and comfort sacrificially.

And while we’re talking about sacrifice, you’re blessed if your parents love you, but even more blessed if they pray for you. They’ll likely never stop doing that. In fact, they will really starting ramping up those prayers now, because they know what the world is like out there. 

So appreciate them, show them unconditional love, give them a break every now and then if they get a little clingy, a little nosey, a little curious about your life. You have been their whole world up until now and empty nester sadness is a real thing.

How do I know these things? I am that parent. 

May you learn from your praying parents that your life is best spent on your knees surrendering everything to a God whose Son left the comforts of home, then sacrificed his life for all mankind. 

If you don’t already have one, let your first adult purchase be a Bible that you can understand. Then read the best selling book of all time about the greatest love story ever written.

Sacrificially yours,

Nazi English teacher