Thursday, October 2, 2008
Grandpa Hertzler's Graduation Blessing
"Romans 12:1 gives us a guideline for life. After Paul has shown us the wonderful things God has done, he tells us our sensible response is to give ourselves as a living sacrifice. In other words, Be Yourself. Don't hide behind any kind of mask or try to do something you're not good at. Meredith, you do this well.
The German word for this is vernuenftige Gottesdienst, which means "Sensible Worship". The word for Sunday morning service is the same as our daily life's work.
Meredith, at one time in your life, I understand you preferred BB guns over dolls. That's the way the Lord made you. And one time, when I was helping your father on the barn roof, and he lifted up some boards, and there was a copperhead. He held it down with a shovel and he called me and I came down and smashed its head. You promptly got it and skinned it and gave the meat to the cats and found eggs and little snakes in it. It gives me the creeps to handle snakes, but you evidently enjoy it. I guess that's the way the Lord made you.
We should serve God in the context of the inclinations He has given us but, never overdo a good thing. We want to fill a special place but the door to it is the daily grind which we don't especially like. We wonder," What shall I do with my life?" "How shall I find my life's
work? " " Where will I find fulfillment?"
We all know enough about the old ways, that we shouldn't put the cart before the horse. King Solomon was able to find fulfillment to thenth degree. He reached the ultimate in success. But, he put the cart before the horse because he did it for his own satisfaction. Ecc. 2:10-"
Whatever my eyes desired I did not keep from them. I kept my heart from no pleasure. For my heart found pleasure in all my toil and this was my reward for all my toil." He fulfilled the American Dream a thousand times. But, when it was over, it wore him out to even think about it.
Let us present our bodies a living sacrifice before the Lord; let us endeavor to live in His presence. He will shepherd us into fulfillment and when it is over, we will have satisfaction and fulfillment in the service we have given. You see, life is service. If
you haven't served you haven't lived. That was missing in Solomon's experience. His life was the ultimate in human greatness, but he sidestepped God's laws and did what he did for his own satisfaction. Just think of the heartache of the thousand girls he married. How often
did they even see him?
The book of Job pictures for us a man who served God faithfully and reaped calamity. One of the worst things was that his friends accused him of wrongdoing. In their discussions about right and wrong, Job cries out, "Surely there's a mine for silver and a place for gold. As for the earth, out of it comes bread. Man cuts channels in the rocks and his eye sees everything precious. But where shall wisdom be found? And where is the place of understanding? Man does not know the way to it, and it is not found in the land of the living. The deep says,'It is
not in me,' and the sea says,'It is not with me.' It cannot be gotten for gold and silver cannot be weighed as its price. Gold cannot equal it nor can it be exchanged for jewels of fine gold."
Read Job 28:20-28.
The book of James mentions Heavenly Wisdom. It says it is first pure. The book of Hebrews says,"Follow peace with all men and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord." James also says,"The harvest of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace." Purity and
peace are linked together. Purity is a primary part of wisdom. James says, "First, pure...then peaceable.."
There was a thriving church where some aggressive young men's positive action took the reigns out of the older brother's hands, thereby jolting them. After some time, they were able to accept this and go along with it. Then there was unity and God's blessings went into high
gear. These older brothers sowed seeds of peace. And a tremendous harvest of righteousness has been coming ever since. As it says," The harvest of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace."
Meredith, I'm glad you chose to give your life to the Lord and be baptized. I'm glad you went to the Bill Gothard Seminars. And now you've finished high school and I congratulate you. You are among a very small percentage of the world's population to have the privileges you have had. Especially since your education has not been tainted by the teaching of evolution, a blatant lie of our times.
Now you're ready for the question. What are you going to go after? The American Dream? That's good to a certain extent, but you'll hardly come up to Solomon and he was sick of it.
Proverbs 8:11 - "For wisdom is better than jewels and all you may desire cannot compare with
her." Prov. 4:7 says, "The beginning of wisdom is this - Get Wisdom, and whatever you get ,get insight." Read a chapter in the book of Proverbs every day - the number of the chapter in accordance with the day's date. Get up early enough to spend time with God first thing in the morning, no matter how busy you are. You'll never be sorry you did.
Enjoy the snakes and the guns and whatever God puts in your hands.
And praise the Lord.
Love, Grandpa Hertzler "