Graduation

1stqtr07 058Completion of the life-long course of study called life, being promoted to what is beyond this life…

Intellectual growth should commence at birth and cease only at death.  Albert Einstein

Life is my college. May I graduate well, and earn some honors. Louisa May Alcott

All our dreams can come true…if we have the courage to pursue them. Walt Disney

Graduation implies successfully completing a course of study. The ceremony is for the graduates, teachers, family and friends, and special dignitaries. The honorees are recognized for their achievements. It is a very special event and marks an important milestone in the life of the new graduates.

There is a type of special graduation which all of us will be required to attend at some point. It is when we graduate from this life and matriculate to whatever lies beyond. It also marks our death to this life. Do we graduate and move on? Many who have lived throughout the ages believe life goes on after this life ends. Their belief is that this life serves as preparation for a next life. There are those that believe that there is nothing on the other side of this life. Is this all that there is?  Is death a graduate’s reward after Life 101? We leave behind us everyone and everything we have ever known and go into the unknown. Do we graduate into nothing?

In a way we graduate to whatever there is or is not. We will be missed by our family and loved ones. Since most fear death, this graduation may not really be a celebration but a time of sadness and regret. If we really knew something wonderful does happen at death, perhaps we would not be fearful and would truly celebrate.

Life teaches us to face our weaknesses and fears and make them our strengths. Whether it is death, learning to ride a bike, swim, drive a car, enter into a relationship or so many other things; we need to conquer our fears to truly succeed at life. Dealing with such issues is part of experiencing, learning, getting knowledge and ultimately wisdom. We acquire these as we journey through the School of Life.

We should learn from life’s experiences, both good and bad. We can appreciate the concept of the “School of Hard Knocks”, living live with “gusto”, making each day count, and “taking time to smell the roses.” We do not really know if we are held accountable for what we do or do not do with our lives. We do know that eventually we die and will leave this life. Our goal should be to live up to expectations and potentialities and take advantage of what Life offers us? Will we graduate with honors?

Challenge: You are special and unique. What you really are, that which defines and controls you, exists inside you. To get the most from Life you must live life from the inside out. Decide to become proactive. Take charge. Everyday you are writing your biography and epitaph. What do you want recorded about your life? Become the captain of your ship, raise your sails, venture out, take on the challenges, and live victoriously. Make life count.

Wisdom: Learn everything you can, anytime you can, from anyone you can – there will always come a time when you will be grateful you did.  Sarah Caldwell

Spiritual: (NIV)

Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. Hebrews 11:1

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16

Where, O death, is your victory: where, O death, is your sting?  1 Corinthians 15:55

Living this life is preparation for the next life. God loves us and wants us to succeed. He wants us to live successfully and triumphantly. God has given us free will. We can waste and squander this life or embrace it with meaning and purpose. We can choose to go totally on our own. Such a choice will end in defeat and failure. Our best choice is to allow God to empower us so and help us to live victoriously. The choice is ours to make.

Prayer:  Help me to not fear death but to look forward to my graduation from earthly life to eternal life.

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