What I Learned from Senior Sunday

Last Sunday, Todd (our student minister) made an announcement about an event honoring our graduating seniors.  He explained that this class were 7th graders when he first came to Maury Hills.  My thoughts ran something like this…

“Wait a minute!  That’s not right.  He’s only been here 5 years.”

“Let’s see…(counting on my fingers)…8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th.”

“Oh my goodness!  This year’s 7th graders are only 5 years away from graduating.”

“Wait a minute!  My daughter’s in 7th grade!!”

Graduates in Cap and GownIt was a sobering reality.  Five years.  What happened to the anxious little girl I dropped off for Kindergarten?  That was just a year or two ago wasn’t it?  Where did the time go?

It went where it always goes…quickly.  As my Mom is so fond of saying “Turn around and she’ll be gone to college.”  

Yeah, thanks Mom, but I don’t want to turn around.  Not yet.

I do need the reminder though.  Time is short. Use it wisely.  The fact is my daughter’s time as an adolescent will be short-lived.  Before long she’ll be making grown-up decisions with grown-up consequences.  Is she ready for that?  Am I?

Those thoughts have been rumbling around in my head since Todd’s announcement.  They only grew stronger after I attended the event itself.  Hearing our seniors talk about how their involvement in the youth group impacted their faith made a great impression on me.  I thought, “It ought to be mandatory for every parent of 7th graders to attend this thing!”

I left a little more convicted of the importance of involvement in a good student ministry.  Honestly, we haven’t pushed too hard in that area.  We figured we’d just let it take its course.  She’ll get more involved when she’s ready.  After all, her schedule is busy enough with school and sports.

Might be time to rethink that position.  There are some priorities that more important than others.  That’s why they call them priorities.  And we need to do a better job of protecting those.  We need to encourage our teens to invest time in activities and relationships that will have an eternal impact.  And we need model that for them in our own lives.

Time is short.

Use it wisely.

I went home after that event and filled out all the summer youth ministry forms!  She’s going (whether she knows it or not).  Not just because of the positive testimonies I heard that night but because of the honest ones too.  The ones that told of getting busy and drifting away and ended with “I wish I would have been more involved.”

Which testimony do I want my daughter to give in five years?  Because in five years she’ll be giving one.  Whew.  Can I stop thinking about this now?

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