Yesterday was out Senior Graduation Recognition Service at FBCR. I love this day, not necessarily the prep and set up prior to this day, but when Sunday morning rolls around and it’s time for them to “walk the stage” in front of the congregation, it makes my heart smile. This is the second group that I have seen come all the way since 7th grade and I love thinking back to when our seniors were in seventh grade and seeing how far they have come.
This group in particular has a special place in my heart, we’ve been through so much together. God used them to help me grow as much as I helped them grow. This is the class where one of their close friends, Billy Rippetoe, passed suddenly after a bike accident. This incident is a defining moment in many of their lives. His death has brought this class not only closer together, but closer to God as well. I was fortunate enough to have helped these kids in the healing process, and one moment at Camp 08, I was with a few of these seniors (at the time sophomores) and we shared our hearts together, prayed together, and shed tears together. It was a defining moment in my life as God revealed to me the man He needed me to be. He showed where and what my ministry needed to be.
I have been told by many that most other churches do not have a baccalaureate service (this is probably why we had a couple of kids who were actually member at other churches participating). But a Senior class needs to be recognized more than just a blurb in the bulletin, I believe that an entire service should be dedicated to the leadership of a youth/student group. I’m glad that we at FBCR do it, and at my next church, if they don’t do it- I’m starting one.
Love you FBCR Senior class of 2010. There will always be a special place in my heart for you guys.