May is a time of graduations from grade school, high school, and college. It is the formal end of one time in our lives and the beginning of a different time. When one graduates from grade school, high school becomes a huge challenge until settled. By the time a student is settled socially, and other wise it seems it is time to transition to college. Depending upon if one lives on a college campus or lives at home the changes can be overwhelming or manageable. Life lessons are learned either way. When one graduates from college and enters the work world everything changes; a sense of responsibility, a feeling of purpose, and a vision of hope for the future.
Each person deals with these changes in life differently. Some people are ready for the changes and welcome the challenges. Others do not want change and want to live in their parent’s basement for a lifetime. However, one deals with the transition change must occur. If one does not change then one cannot grow. The growing pains of life is what gives us character.
“Not only that, but we even boast of our afflictions,
knowing that affliction produces endurance,
and endurance, proven character,
and proven character, hope,
and hope does not disappoint,
because the love of God has been poured out into our hearts
through the Holy Spirit that has been given to us.”
– Romans 5:5
Often times in this life we think everything and every situation should be pleasant and easy. This is not reality but a perception that our culture casts upon our thinking. The truth is that adversity is a natural part of our existence. There will be conflict, disagreement, health issues, accidents, and trying times. Our reactions in the times of adversity are what change us for the better. St. Paul said it best when he wrote, “affliction produces endurance, and endurance proven character, and proven character, hope, and hope does not disappoint…”
I tell my students other than God the one thing you can count on in life is change, so you better be able to adapt and be flexible. You cannot control everything. You cannot stop the changes. Graduation brings change and no matter how hard one fights to stop changing, that fight will cause a change within as well. Accept the transitions and changes by opening yourself to the grace of God’s love and allow God to lead your reactions. Embrace the experiences and let graduations, in any part of your life, lead you to a fuller life.