Our first son, MD, graduated from Northern Michigan Christian School last night. It was an incredible evening for us as a family as we celebrated both this great achievement but also the next chapter in the story of his life. We are blessed that he has done so well in this first chapter and can’t wait to see what the rest of the God’s story will be for him.
One of MD’s close friends, Riemer Praamsma, was valedictorian of their class. He gave an excellent speech and challenge to his classmates which in turn was a challenge for all of us who were in attendance. In part of his message he quoted the second stanza from a poem titled ‘As kingfishers catch fire, dragonflies dráw fláme’ by Gerard Manley Hopkins (1844-1889). It was a poem read to their class by their English teacher, Mr. Harris, in preparation for their mission trip to the Dominican Republic.
As I listen to Riemer read that second stanza and then challenge his classmates I too was challenged by this moving poem and it’s message for us.
I say more: the just man justices;
Keeps grace: that keeps all his goings graces;
Acts in God’s eye what in God’s eye he is-
Christ-for Christ plays in ten thousand places,
Lovely in limbs, and lovely in eyes not his
To the Father through the features of men’s faces.
As Riemer said to us last night, “we are called to be the hands and feet of Christ ‘in ten thousand places””.