Along with back-to-school shopping for new clothes and school supplies comes the actual process of starting school. Some of you will be freshman and junior high students…and are nervous. What will the older kids think of you? Some are sophomores and juniors and have the high school thing down. It feels like routine. Some of you are getting ready to begin the infamous “senior year.” This is an exciting and important year for you. This year you’ll decide which college you’re going to or if you want to start a “real job.” And finally, some of you are either beginning college (which is a HUGE transition step), or continuing as a college student.
All of you are at different phases in your lives, but there is one lesson you can learn together: this is not the best time of your life. Contrary to popular belief in the media and in the world, the best time of your life is when you decide to become a Christian and begin to live your life fully for Him. This decision could happen during high school or college, but the point is that you shouldn’t allow yourself to place unrealistic expectations on certain times of your life like high school. Because the truth is, when we become Christians and devote our lives to serving God, all the days following are the best days of our lives because we have the hope of an eternal life with our Savior.
It’s so easy to get caught up in drama or let yourself get upset over something silly, especially in high school. How many times have you been caught in a fight between friends or were having a conversation when the topic turned to gossip? Have you been let down because you liked a guy and you found out he liked someone else? It’s easy to see your frustration or sadness in situations like these, but trust me, life does get much simpler if you trust in God. We learn in Proverbs that we should “trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make straight your paths” (Prov. 3:5-6).
Paul tells us in Romans that “we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose” (Rom. 8:28). We can take comfort in the fact that the Lord does take care of those who love and trust Him. Now, I’m in no way promising that everything is perfect once you become a Christian, because bad things will happen occasionally. Still we should“count it all joy…when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness” (James 1:2-3).
I know trusting in the Lord and having faith isn’t always easy…that’s why we have God’s word and each other. Paul wrote “now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience” (Rom. 8:24-25). In 2 Corinthians, Paul also tells us “we walk by faith, not by sight” (2 Cor. 5:7). We can know we have a greater home awaiting us. We can help each other remember that being a Christian IS the best time of our lives and that the best is yet to come!