WF Baccalaureate, Part Deux

2 Jun

What did DAVID have to say to the Class of 2009?? Here goes:

Seniors, you’ve made it this far!! Six more days and you walk across a stage. You receive your high school diploma. AND LIFE CONTINUES.

One of the greatest mistakes made by a speaker in my position is to assert today that you are the future. That the balance of the entire world will someday be in your hands. Cliches like those make for great subject matter in a Baccalaureate service, but it is just not true.

Yes, the world is a hard place. You are about to step into something that will take you by surprise if you are not careful. You might think you are prepared. We HOPE you are prepared. But taking this step out of high school and into the next realm of life can be shocking for some.

Yes, the world is not fair. Life is not always fair. To this point in your life, you’ve been in a relatively even and fair environment. That ends when you walk across that stage. Sorry to be the one to tell you that, but it is true.

But, I do have some good news . . . The TRUTH of today is, YOU ARE NOT THE FUTURE. YOU ARE THE PRESENT. The decisions you make, TODAY, have an IMMEDIATE impact on this world. You have already begun to assume the reigns of this world, and all of the responsibilities that come with them.

In the Sermon on the Mount, (Matt 7:13) Jesus said: Many people are on the path that leads to DESTRUCTION. Only a few are on the path that leads to LIFE. WHICH WILL YOU CHOOSE??

Here is the thing: PEOPLE ARE CHOOSING THIS WIDE PATH. Many are building their lives on a lie . . . Many are choosing to build upon a foundation that LOOKS solid, but gives no sound support at all.

Jesus follows up His plea to chose the narrow path by reminding us that there will be many false prophets, who are ferocious wolves in sheep’s clothing. They will offer “TRUTH” but it will really be a LIE.

In I Timothy 4, Paul presents this challenge to Timothy:

Some will JUMP SHIP (1-5)
Some WILL abandon their faith
Let it go
Too binding
Some WILL make up their own faith
God will have a place, but only within the limits they allow

In other words, they will attempt to redefine God so He will operate the way THEY want Him to operate
Some WILL mislead people IN THE NAME OF GOD
They will take advantage of a lack of knowledge in some people
Not FACTUAL knowledge
HEART KNOWLEDGE
They will pose many things in the name of KNOWLEDGE that are not TRUE
They will present God in a package that is
50% less fattening, Takes 50% less time, And, much less money
And people will buy into it because it makes SENSE
GOD WAS NEVER MEANT TO BE SOLD TO YOU IN ANY WAY!!!!
God is NOT a Ronco commercial . . . And I am NOT the SHAMWOW guy

These who jump ship are doing it because THEY WANT THEIR OWN WILL INSTEAD OF GOD’S WILL for their lives
And, there are people who claim Christ who are ALL ABOUT THIS. DON’T BE ONE.

Be a BEACON OF TRUTH (6-10)
The TRUTH will set you free . . .
LIES IMPRISON YOU
If you love someone, tell them the truth
Be TRUE to God . . . True to His word
Share the TRUTH you know about Jesus Christ
Have nothing to do with godless myths and old wives’ tales
Don’t buy in to the lies about God
Many people will tell you many different things about God
Know the truth by KNOWING HIM, ASKING HIM
Train yourself to be godly
Physical / Spiritual Health
Don’t just assume your relationship with God
ACTIVELY PURSUE IT
Put your hope in Him and Him alone
Draw your strength from HIM

YOUTH is NO EXCUSE (11-16)
Everyone in this room believes he/she is YOUNG
YOUTH IS NO EXCUSE to side-step our responsibility
We have a responsibility to each other in this church, in this WORLD
Set an example in SPEECH, LIFE, LOVE, FAITH, PURITY
We have a responsibility to read and interact with God’s word
We have a responsibility to be diligent about living for HIM

True, Paul wrote this to Timothy, who was preaching and teaching in the church
YOUR LIFE IS A SERMON . . .
It has been said you preach your funeral sermon every day of your life
How you live is how you will be remembered

I say, you tell the story about Jesus Christ and His salvation and peace in HOW YOU LIVE YOUR LIFE
Preaching is telling the story
Your life tells a story to the world EVERY DAY
WHAT is IT saying??
Youth is NO EXCUSE . . .

Everyday, you make a choice . . . Live for God?? Live for myself??
There WILL be a day when we all will face final judgment

Many people are on the path that leads to DESTRUCTION
Only a few are on the path that leads to LIFE

It is before you TODAY and EVERY DAY for the rest of your life
Which will YOU do?? Which will YOU choose??

The wise man will build his house upon the ROCK. The ROCK is JESUS CHRIST.
The foolish man will build his house upon the SAND. Comfortable . . . Easy to work with . . . DESTRUCTIVE when the storms come. Upon WHICH will you build your life?

Yes, here we are. Baccalaureate Sunday. Two Thousand and Nine. Some of you thought this day would NEVER come. Some of us cannot believe how quickly it did.
As you move through the stages of life, you have questions. At age three, you ask MANY, MANY questions: The ultimate of which is WHY?? Sometimes the only answer that will suffice is BECAUSE. At age 8, you ask some questions, but have realized that there are some answers in life you can obtain on your own. THAT is why you took mom’s hairdryer apart.
At age 12, you don’t really ask too many questions. Not because you don’t have questions, but you are afraid to be criticized or laughed-at for asking. At age 15, you don’t care about much of anything but having fun. At age 18, you don’t ask many questions because YOU HAVE ALL THE ANSWERS. You have the world by the tail. You have your entire life in front of you. And you have it all figured out.
At age 25, you again don’t ask too many questions because you are too busy enjoying life. At age 36, you start to understand that you really DON’T know everything there is to know about life. As the years come faster and faster, you realize the answers you THOUGHT you knew are not really true. Everything is not as it seemed.
And the years fly by. And you raise your own children, and some of the realities of life actually start making sense. And you grow older and older. And, towards the end, you ask “Why?” And sometimes the only answer that will suffice is “Because.”

And life is a WONDERFUL journey.

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