Summary: During the days that Berlin was physically divided by the Berlin Wall, there was a notable place called "Checkpoint Charlie" where EVERYONE and EVERYTHING was checked. Checkpoints are helpful in our lives, and commencement for your high school graduation
A CHECKPOINT IN LIFE
(Preached May 1997, as the commencement address for Bosque Farms Christian Academy.)
During the days that Berlin was physically divided by the Berlin Wall, there was a notable place called "Checkpoint Charlie" where EVERYONE and EVERYTHING was checked. Checkpoints are helpful in our lives, and commencement is one of those check points.
1Cor 11:31 "For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged."
WHAT SHOULD YOU CHECK?
I. SEE IF YOU ARE ON COURSE
A. MANY ARE NOT ON COURSE SCHOLASTICALLY!
1. US NEWS AND WORLD REPORT: "At commencement ceremonies this year, thousands of U.S. high school graduates are walking off with diplomas that are virtually counterfeit. After 12 years of schooling, they have not been taught minimum skills in reading, speaking, writing, and mathematics."
2. UNITED STATES OFFICE OF EDUCATION: In our public schools, there are over 43 million students being exposed to 2.1 million teachers in 43,600 public schools operated by 16,200 school districts. The cost has increased over 50% in the last decade and the education has declined.
3. NEW YORK TIMES: "Nearly half of the nation’s adults lack the literacy skills necessary to master such day to day reading matter as driving manuals, newspapers, and job applications."
4. TIME MAGAZINE: "The public school system in New York City is on the brink of collapse… The origin of the crisis is simple. The public schools have not been able to teach most black children how to read and write and to add and subtract competently. Ghetto schools have therefore become little more than custodial institutions for keeping children off the streets.
B. BUT YOU HAVE A QUALITY EDUCATION!
1. You have skills beyond many of your peers in your age group.
2. Your academics are on course at this point!
II. SEE IF YOU ARE ON COURSE SOCIALLY
A. ARE YOU MATURING SOCIALLY?
1. Do you know how to deal with difficult people?
2. Do you know how to minister grace and healing to hurting people?
3. There will be many SPECIAL PEOPLE in your life.
a. SPECIAL PEOPLE who will challenge you emotionally
b. SPECIAL PEOPLE such as the person who thinks it’s his call in life to get even with you for something you never did in the first place.
c. SPECIAL PEOPLE such as the person who doesn’t understand proper physical hygeine, but enjoys your close company.
d. SPECIAL PEOPLE such as the person who always wants to be right even when you know you’re right and he’s wrong.
B. YOU’VE BEEN GIVEN A CHRISTIAN EDUCATION
1. You have been taught the importance of being a servant!
2. APOCRYPHAL STORY:
FOR WHOM DID YOU CARRY THE STONE? A story is told of Jesus and His disciples walking one day along a stony road. Jesus asked each of them to choose a stone to carry for Him. John, it is said, chose a large one while Peter chose the smallest. Jesus led them then to the top of mountain and commanded that the stones be made bread. Each disciple, by this time tired and hungry, was allowed to eat the bread he held in his hand, but of course Peter’s was not sufficient to satisfy his hunger. John gave him some of his. Some time later Jesus again asked the disciples to pick up a stone to carry. This time Peter chose the largest of all. Taking them to a river, Jesus told them to cast the stones into the water. They did so, but looked at one another in bewilderment. "For whom," asked Jesus, "did you carry the stone?"
3. You’ve learned the importance of SERVING OTHERS, even when they are SPECIAL PEOPLE!
III. SEE IF YOU ARE ON COURSE SPIRITUALLY
A. HOW YOU CHECK YOUR SPIRITUALITY
1. SHOULD NOT JUDGE BY OTHERS
2. SHOULD NOT JUDGE BY OURSELVES
B. SHOULD JUDGE ACCORDING TO THE WORD OF GOD
1. BY GOD’S EXPECTATIONS AND GOD’S COMMANDMENTS
2. You can’t make up your own rules when you play MONOPOLY
a. You have to play by the RULES of the one who CREATED the game.
b. You can’t just arbitrarily decide that you get $400 when you pass go while everyone else only gets $100.
c. You can’t just take property without paying for it.
d. You can’t just take money out of the bank when everyone else has to earn it.
e. You have to play by the rules of the game.
3. In like manner, you have to live your life according to the rules of the One who created you!
4. You can’t just make up your own rules as you go along.
5. While many others have been taught that there are no rules (they’ve been taught that there are no moral absolutes)
YOU’VE BEEN TAUGHT THE RULES!