This must be a misprint.  I just saw a high school graduation invitation with my daughter’s name and pictures all over it.

Didn’t she just lose her first baby tooth last week?  I guess it’s time to face the reality that time has flown at light speed and my oldest child is ready to head off to college.  I’m proud of the beautiful young lady that she has become.  There have been quite a few high fives and hardships along her road to maturity, but God has truly given us a wonderful blessing.

In a couple of months, she will be starting college some 250 miles from the loving arms that watched and cared for her every day.  What 11th hour words of wisdom can I give her that would truly have an impact on the way she lives her life?  I trust her to make the right and moral decisions, but is there something else I can impart to her that would be a part of her daily life?

Maybe it comes down to 3 words: KEEP THE FAITH.


A letter to my graduate

My wonderful and loving Christian child, I am so proud that you have made keeping your faith in God the top priority in your life.  However, the journey that you’re about to undertake will have many roadblocks and detours trying to lead you from this righteous path, certainly many more obstacles than I had to face at your age.

You will be pulled from many directions.  Our very own government will tell you that some of your beliefs are not politically correct, or perhaps not in accordance with the laws of the land.  Keep the faith.  Love everyone as Jesus does, but when the laws of men conflict with the laws of God, you know which road to follow.  The answer is simple, the decision can be tough.

You may find colleagues, friends, instructors, and bosses ridiculing you for your beliefs.  Keep the faith.  Some may try to ‘prove’ to you that God is a myth.  Remember that yours is an infinite God and all they have is finite reasoning.  Take time to be silent and listen to your conscience, your inner voice to and from God.  That is the source of your moral compass. For so many, their conscience has either been obscured, ignored, or replaced.

Please find time to pray daily, my dear.  Prayer works and prayer is powerful.  At the beginning of the day, I know your intentions are pure and good, but not one person on this Earth is strong enough by themselves to face the struggles and temptations of this world.  Keep the faith, and look to that faith for assistance and guidance.

These are exciting times for you and I’m so happy for you.  But through college and beyond, you will face hard times and sad times.  Your mom and I wish we could be there every time you need a reassuring hug or a shoulder to cry or lean on. Of course, we are always just a phone call away and you always have our love and support.  But, above all that, know that you are never alone.  The Lord will provide you direction, support, love, and comfort.  Remember, with Him, all things are possible… Just keep the faith.

We love you and congratulations.

Courtesy Merrell family