by Matt Davidson
It’s been a long time since a senior class at Timothy, or most any other high school, has endured this big of a disruption. Almost a century ago, some Timothy students never finished high school because they had to work at home during the Depression. During times of war, others anxiously awaited to see if they would be drafted into the armed forces and leave family and friends to risk their lives for our country. Certainly many more have faced personal adversity and trials more difficult than our current circumstances…but for an entire class, the Class of 2020, this is an unprecedented hardship.
I know these seniors well. Before all of this started, I saw them almost every day. I’ve watched them in the halls, in class, at lunch, on stage, on the court/field…I’ve watched them in chapel, in the bleachers, in study groups, and in prayer. I’ve watched them laugh and love. I also know many of their parents and even grandparents, and they are some of the best people I’ve ever known. All in all, I love this class! I’m proud of them.
And there’s something else about this class that you should know. They bounce back quickly. My grandfather and my dad would always tell me growing up—the best measure of the strength of a person is how much it takes to discourage them. Let me tell you, by that definition this class is strong.
In 2 Corinthians 4, Paul shares of battling through adversity: We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair. We are hunted down, but never abandoned by God. We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed. Through suffering, our bodies continue to share in the death of Jesus so that the life of Jesus may also be seen in our bodies.
Later in the same chapter, the Bible says this: And as God’s grace reaches more and more people, there will be great thanksgiving, and God will receive more and more glory. That is why we never give up.
Then the chapter closes with this eternal perspective: For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever! So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever.
Knowing the trials that Paul went through, it’s hard to imagine that he would dare to refer to them as “small.” In another translation, it says “our light and momentary troubles….” But they are small and light when compared to the “glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever!” Amen!
Think about it…as they claim the promises of God, the Class of 2020 will leave high school stronger and better prepared for life than any class before them. Amazing! As they fix their eyes on Jesus, they will have successfully completed an intensive crash course in “Perseverance 101.”
As a family, please join me in praying for our senior class as part of this particular devotional. Their names are below. Pick 3 or 4 with names starting with the same letter as yours in the alphabet.