I remember when you had two graduations–high school and college. Nowdays, you have kindergarten graduation, sixth grade graduation, high school graduation, college graduation, masters graduation, and doctorate graduation. You are expected to ‘gift’ all of these.
I wish more time was spent in learning than testing. I wish more time was spent thinking about how to ‘use’ what you have learned rather than put silly letters behind your name. I wish schools would go back to the idea of ‘hands on’ experience and apprenticeship.
Moses gets it. After all he did for his people, he realized that his time was ending. They were going to need a new leader, and that leader needed to be prepared for the journey to come. Moses needed to come up with some spectacular wisdom to impart to his successor.
Deuteronomy 31: 6-8-Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the LORD thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee. And Moses called unto Joshua, and said unto him in the sight of all Israel, Be strong and of a good courage: for thou must go with this people unto the land which the LORD hath sworn unto their fathers to give them; and thou shalt cause them to inherit it. And the LORD, he it is that doth go before thee; he will be with thee, he will not fail thee, neither forsake thee: fear not, neither be dismayed.
Graduation is about publically acknowledging that you have learned lessons. Now, we wait for those who make that claim to enter the ‘real’ world and show us what they have learned.
It isn’t always easy. New graduates make mistakes and bad choices. But new graduates also have a zeal and energy that those of us who have been walking in the ‘real world’ have forgotten.
Welcome graduates. You leave behind a lot of lessons, but you have more on the horizon. When you waver or worry, take a minute to listen to the advice Moses gave Joshua…then go forward in courage.