Eighth Grade Recognition Sunday is a beautiful day in our church’s year. It gives us the chance to congratulate the students who will graduate later this week. We rejoice in them as individuals, and as manifestations of our church’s mission to educate young people and to offer them the opportunity to draw closer to the Lord.

I’d thought this day might lose some of its luster for me as our children graduated from WLS, but I continue to enjoy it. In fact, I appreciate it on a whole new level now. This year, as Sara graduates from college and Sean from high school, they still stand on the foundation they built here at WLS and draw from the lessons that the faculty taught them – in the classroom and by example. While their academic journey was rigorous and rewarding, the moral and spiritual formation they received here was even more important, and continues to support with them as they grow as citizens of the world and the Kingdom.

As we celebrate the class of 2017 and the foundation their years at Westchester Lutheran have given them, we also have an excellent opportunity to examine our own foundation. Are we as eager to learn and grow as these young people are? Are our feet planted on the Word of God or on the cheap promises of the world? Are we anchored by truth and grace or by selfish desires? Do we stand on God’s will or our own? Are we serving the Lord or ourselves?

As we pray for the future of these wonderful young people today, let us also pray for the future of all the children of God, no matter their age or circumstance. May each mind be open to growing and changing. May each heart be always ready to serve God and love one another. May each soul yearn to be fully His.

Congratulations, graduates. God bless you.

“Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and strangers, but fellow citizens with God’s people and also members of his household, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.”
Ephesians 2:19-21