Leslie just posted some very similar thoughts that I am about to share: http://www.thejourneytojillian.blogspot.com/ But I feel compelled to share my thoughts as well, for whatever that is worth.
These past two weeks have been very hectic and stressful for many students and parents as the school year has begun again. Perhaps, the most anxiety comes for the families with students going away to college, and especially for those going away for the first time. It is is tremendous joy to be able to play a role in so many young people's lives and seeing them go off to college is a blessing, but also a little bit sad. These past two years it has been my tremendous honor to take one of our college kids to school and help her move in. Without fail, on my way home the tears just start coming down and I think about all the challenges she will face at school and how her faith will be tested. Selfishly, I also think about how much I am going to miss seeing her. Now that Leslie and I have been here awhile there are a lot of our students moving on and it is different around these parts of the world without them in it.
Praying with them and seeing them off, when we were able, has been a joy and something that we will continue to do with these students, and planning visits is also something we must do. As students go off to school, they continue to need our support, our prayers and they need to know that they are not forgotten back home. High school graduation seems like a finish line of sorts and we as a church must move that line back. Our students haven't finished anything yet, they are just moving onto something different, and they are still students and young people that need us. I am excited for this new school year and I can't wait to see all that God does in the coming year!