Thursday, May 7, 2009

Finishing Well

Just a few more days of school left for the year . . . but we sure are dragging over here and struggling to finish. I don't know about you, but I find it much easier to start strong than to end well. That's why I love Galations 6:9 -- "And let us not be weary in well doing, for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not."

I guess this thing of finishing well is a common problem. I recently heard a pastor say that only one out of ten people who start with the Lord finish strong. That is a very sobering statistic. I don't want to be disqualified, I want to finish well!

We currently have a high school senior in the house. He is discovering how difficult it is to finish well, because he has battled a severe case of Senioritis this semester, which is reflected in the fact that both his grades and his attitude have slipped some.

Nevertheless, by God's grace, he has finished strong.

I was totally amazed on Monday at his school's end of the year award ceremony when he received three awards.

First, he received the Student Government Student of the Year Award for his excellent performance as Student Body President. I was literally in tears after the Student Council Sponsor finished detailing what an outstanding job he had done this year and explained how he "stood head and shoulders above the rest." (her pun, not mine!) :)

Secondly, he was awarded the Leadership Award, which is presented to the senior boy and girl "who best demonstrate godly influence over others, set high standards and goals and strive to achieve them, and exemplify a Christ-like attitude by serving others."

Finally, he was honored with the Eagle Award, which is considered the most prestigious senior award. It is bestowed on the senior boy and girl "whose lives best reflect SCA's mission and core values, who maintain high academic standards, who participate and excel in SCA's extracurricular activities, and who demonstrate strong leadership abilities as well as strong Christian character."

Of course, I am very proud of Taylor and his accomplishments. But, to whom much is given, much is required. I pray that he will continue seeking the Lord, not relying on his own strength and abilities, and that he will finish strong in the race of life!

"Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended, but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are before, I press toward the mark of the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus." -- Phillipians 3:13-14 KJV

A picture of those who are graduating with honors:

Here is a picture of Taylor with two great servant-leaders -- his headmaster and his father.

Taylor has run well the first leg of the race, but he is about to face a challenging section of the course, one that has tripped up many a runner before him. As he leaves the safety and comfort of home and becomes a college student/athlete, he will face many trials and temptations. He will discover only in the heat of the race if his training has adequately prepared him for the challenge. Life is not a 5K, but a grueling marathon, and my prayer for him, for myself, and for my entire family is that we may all finish well.

"Do you not know that in a race all the runners compete, but [only] one receives the prize? So run [your race] that you may lay hold [of the prize] and make it yours. Now every athlete who goes into training conducts himself temperately and restricts himself in all things. They do it to win a wreath that will soon wither, but we do it to receive a crown of eternal blessedness] that cannot wither. Therefore, I do not run uncertainly (without definite aim). I do not box like one beating the air and striking without an adversary. But [like a boxer] I buffet my body [handle it roughly, discipline it by hardships] and subdue it, for fear that after proclaiming to others the Gospel and things pertaining to it, I myself should become unfit [not stand the test, be unapproved and rejected as a counterfeit]. -- 1 Corinthians 9:24-27 Amplified


Martha said...

WOW, you must be so proud of Taylor. I had no idea he was so tall, he's looking like a young man already!! You raised him well, you should give yourself a pat on your back :) congrats to Taylor for all the rewards that he has received and thank you for sharing the pictures!

Jules said...

I don't know why I always have problems commenting on your blog - but I'll try again. Congrats to Taylor and belated congrats to Ashlyn. You have every reason to feel proud - you've raised wonderful kids. And now your training is about to be put to the test. It's scary but we know that we can trust Him to keep our children. Blessings, Jules

Jules said...

Hi Elizabeth, great choice for your favourite post for 2009. If I had to chose just one of yours that I particularly enjoyed it would be the one when your daughter (Ashlyn I think) surprised you early one morning with a visit when you thought she was still hours away! I just love the surprise aspect but also the wonderful love between mother and daughter that is so evident.

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