Preparing for worship – Heather Mustain, associate pastor.
May 21 is graduate recognition Sunday. In this week’s Tapestry you will find pictures of those graduating, along with hopes and plans for the future. These are youth whom many of you have loved and discipled into a curious and nurturing faith. And while it’s a proud moment for our families and our youth, today is a proud moment for us all. Not because of the individual successes or well laid out plans, but because of who these young people are, the lives they have led thus far and will continue to lead in the future.
“The Wonderful Things You Will Be” is one of my favorite children’s books. Written as a love letter from a parent to a child, the whimsical and rhythmic pattern easily captures one’s heart and mind. It begins:
“When I look at you and you look at me, I wonder what wonderful things you will be.
When you were too small to tell me hello, I knew you were someone I wanted to know.
For all of your tininess couldn’t disguise, a heart so enormous, and wild, and wise.
This is the first time there’s ever been you, so I wonder what wonderful things you will do.”
As parents we dream of our children’s future. As a church we dream of the generations to come. Will our children be kind, wise, bold or clever? Will they stand up for good by saving the day? Or play a song only they know how to play? Will they learn how to fly to find the best view? Or perhaps tell a story only they know?
Our wondering and our dreaming is our antidote to fear because life is rarely linear, predictable or constant. And while the world can be wholly erratic and chaotic, what I’ve come to learn about the generational life of Wilshire is that there is a form of stability and consistency to our life and love together. While our newly minted graduates will leave, my hope is that the stability and consistency of our love built over time will shelter them through life’s storms and remind them of God’s faithful presence.
So this day, graduates, may you hear us say we are proud of you, not for what you’ve done thus far or for anything you will do in the future, but because of who you are. You are a beloved child of God; you are a beloved child of ours; you are welcome home anytime.