The Christian's Ultimate Graduation

Will we think about tomorrow like we think about now?
Can we survive it out there? Can we make it somehow?
I guess I thought that this would never end
And suddenly it's like we're women and men
Will the past be a shadow that will follow us round?
Will these memories fade when I leave this town?
I keep, I keep thinking that it's not goodbye
Keep on thinking it's a time to fly

(Vitamin C "Graduation- Friends Forever")

And for seniors- it is a time to fly! Fly out of the prison high school doors- fly off to summer vacation- fly off to a job- and for many, they'll fly off to a college.

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But before you or your friends soar off into the sunset with diploma proudly in hand, there is a BIG day coming up that involves caps, gowns, speeches, tassels, and massive celebrations.

(At least I know why my teachers celebrated at my graduation…it was the last time they had to see me.)

And what many people don't realize is that Vitamin C was spot on with these questions:

Will the past be a shadow that will follow us round?

Will these memories fade when I leave this town?

If you haven't realized this yet…the answer is a resounding YES!

I'm not sure why, but when you're in high school, your brain is in record mode where all the victories, defeats, laughter, tears, drama, grades, and maybe even a little knowledge are stored in living color for the rest of your life.

Case in point…Uncle Rico:

"Ohhhh, man I wish I could go back in time. I'd take state."

And ohhhh, man, I wish I could go back in time back to high school as well…not because I could "take state," but because of a tormenting memory I have from graduation day that is forever etched into my mind.

The faces…Mike, Jim, Jerry, Gina, Sarah, David, and dozens of others. I remember watching each of my friends as they crossed the stage to receive their diploma and being smacked with the reality that I had blown chance after chance after chance to share the love of Christ and the gospel of salvation with them-

But…to my shame…I didn't.

Their names and faces are shadows that follow me around.

The memory of my failure has not faded even though I've left that town

And one day, I have another 'graduation' day that involves you as well:

For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each of us may receive what is due us for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad. (2 Corinthians 5:10)

The 'Judgment Seat of Christ' is the mandatory reckoning day for all Christians. It is a commencement of our completion from this earthly life. We will all line up and our lives will go through this process:

On the judgment day, fire will reveal what kind of work each builder has done. The fire will show if a person's work has any value. If the work survives, that builder will receive a reward. But if the work is burned up, the builder will suffer great loss. The builder will be saved, but like someone barely escaping through a wall of flames. (1 Corinthians 3:12-15)

The "fire" referred to here is the blazing gaze of Jesus Christ as he watches a review of your life on the heavenly Imax screen. All the selfish motivations, thoughtless attitudes, and sinful works will burn up like cigarette paper in an inferno.

But…all the times you prayed for boldness and shared the gospel will transform into a crown of pure gold and presented to you as an eternal reward.

I already know how it's going down for me. When my high school days flash before Christ on Judgment day, the flames will consume them in an instance. But ever since my graduation day, I've been committed to THE Cause, and my desperate prayer is that there will at least be a scrap of gold that falls from the King's table for me.

How will it go down for you? Will there be crowns for you? Or will you enter heaven with the residue of smoke clinging to your glorified attire? I implore you my friends, please don't end up like me- regretting the missed opportunities I was given by Jesus Christ Himself to share the good news.

May this graduation season be a wakeup call that ignites a passion for the lost on your campus, and may God give you a vision of Judgment Day that includes great reward for your part in THE Cause!

Lane Palmer serves as a writer for Dare 2 Share Ministries (D2S) in Arvada, Colorado, a ministry committed to energizing and equipping teenagers to know, live, share and own their faith in Jesus. For more information about D2S, please visit

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