Last Spring, my daughter-in-law’s brother was chosen to give the student address for his high school’s commencement exercises. Commencement. We all begin again every day, don’t we? Thus, this abridged version of his tremendous speech applies to all of us. I hope you will enjoy it, and be challenged by it, as much as I was.
Throughout the Bible and history, God has demonstrated how he can use the adversity of our circumstances, the uncertainty we experience, and our human failings, to lift up his virtues to the whole world. Although God does guarantee that we’ll experience uncertainty and hardships, we can take comfort in the fact that all things work together for the good of those that love God and are called according to his purpose.
It doesn’t matter what the rest of the world is doing or what weaknesses we have. I particularly enjoy the way Mark Hall (of the band Casing Crowns) put it. He said, “God doesn’t need us. He wants us.” God desires to take us on a great adventure with him. No matter what obstacles you encounter, the weaknesses you have, or the uncertainty you face, God can use you as his instrument to accomplish something spectacular.
Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ, affirmed this in 2 Corinthians 12:9-10 (HCSB) “But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.’ Therefore, I will most gladly boast all the more about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may reside in me. So I take pleasure in weaknesses, insults, catastrophes, persecutions, and in pressures, because of Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”
Whatever God has in store for us, remember that being a follower of Jesus Christ is not separate from our ordinary lives. Rather, having a relationship with Christ is our identity, and how we live for him should permeate every facet of our person. It can be extremely easy for us to conform to the low expectations of this world. Paul wrote in Ephesians, “Therefore I, the prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk worthy of the calling you have received, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, accepting with one another in love, diligently keeping the unity of the Spirit with the peace that binds us” (Ephesians 4:1-3 HCSB).
Regardless of future adversities, uncertainties ahead and the weaknesses we feel, I challenge you to live in a manner worthy of the high calling of God. By so doing, I am more than confident that we can have an impact for Christ on this world.
Composed by Ben Lechmann, edited and published with his permission.
Scripture quotations marked HCSB are taken from the Holman Christian Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1999, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2009 by Holman Bible Publishers. Used by permission. Holman Christian Standard Bible®, Holman CSB®, and HCSB® are federally registered trademarks of Holman Bible Publishers.