I always find the pomp and circumstances of graduations a bit, well, pompous. Perhaps it is a bit of envy on my part. I doubt I will ever have a single, double, or triple gold cord representing my superior grades. Yet, there is something in watching others walk that gives me a perspective. The gowns, caps, tassels, cords, and colors tell a story of something greater. Each has a story worth hearing! It is an honor to be able to listen and hear of their journey’s if only of an excerpt.
I remember my father’s gown, see the orange and black, and I recall of our shared walk. We have the same alma mater, shared well beyond a single educational institution. Our story is best told and understood by the learning life gave us on the streets. Hard work is not a stranger. Getting dirty was far more likely to be the norm rather than the exception in our journey. We were and are quite different with time. Change has not always been kind, yet I find myself living with a familiar friend called Hope because of his example.
I find myself remember your story and others. It is in the details that I find myself living and playing beside that creek. It defined life far more than anyone imagined at the time. I find myself playing baseball beyond my abilities, often because of the enthusiasm and energy you always seem to bring to life.
It does not end there. I see life different because of another’s story. I feel life in ways I never imagined, because of a shared walk.
Just as I think I have it all within my understanding, I hear the beginning of a conversation; “‘And now,’ God says, this God who took me in hand from the moment of birth to be his servant, to bring Jacob back home to him, to set a reunion for Israel—what an honor for me in God's eyes! That God should be my strength!” (Isaiah 49.5)
I see something greater; stories unwritten, wonder undiscovered.
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