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Commencement 2023

pen and paper

Principal's Pen - June 2023

Friday, May 26, 2023

Welcome to Berean Christian High School's 54th commencement in honor of the class of two thousand twenty-three. Today, we are sending these graduates into the world, where they will join more than 3800 Berean alums who have gone before them.  

Only God knows what they will experience in their journey through life, all the places they will go, what they will do, and the people they will meet. But the Lord is good, and we believe their future is in His hands. In Psalm 139, we read these words from King David about God and his control over the future: The King writes, "All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be." 

Graduates, God has providentially involved Himself in your life and in your future. And, He has given you a task, and it's the same task He's given to every person He's ever created - a task to represent Him well, a task to make Him look good, a task to bring Him glory, wherever you may go, and in whatever you may do.  Listen to these words from the Lord in the book of Isaiah: "I will say to the north, 'Give them up!' and to the south, 'Do not hold them back.' Bring my sons from afar and my daughters from the ends of the earth — everyone who is called by my name, whom I created for my glory." Graduates, that is why you exist, that is the purpose of your life – to glorify the God who made you. And graduates, if there's one thing to remember as you move on from here, it's that! 

There's another passage in the Bible that we love to think about when we prepare for moments like this…moments of sending out graduates into the world. It comes to us from the book of Psalms, chapter 127: "Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, are the children of one's youth. Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them!" 

"Arrows in the hand of a warrior…" Arrows are offensive weapons; offensive weapons designed to be shot, to travel long distances, and to hit an intended target! Graduates, today is the first step of your being shot into the world. And today, your private Christian Education becomes very public. Public for the glory of God, public for the spread of the gospel, and public for the common good of the world. 

Berean Christian High School's Class of 2023

Like your parents, we are very excited to see how it all goes. And we are eagerly awaiting to hear about the targets you hit. So, how has God shaped these arrows that are about to be shot? Who is the class of 2023?  What talents, skills, and abilities do they have, and how will God use them to make Him look good in His world?  

Well, I can tell you this class is very diverse in their interests and callings. And as you probably know, they are very talented, with many accolades.  I think of their scholarly achievements, National Merit Scholarships, contributions to the fine arts, and five-star drama and choir performances.  And let me not fail to mention their triumphs in extra-curricular activities and clubs like Robotics and Model United Nations. And their service hours to the East Bay community and their contributions and service to the local church. 

And I must comment on their athletic prowess. At a school with a population of 400, competing against public schools with thousands of students, these seniors led their teams to the playoffs in 19 of the 20 sports we offer.  And two of our teams and one individual athlete advanced to the State Finals in their respective sports. And ladies and gentlemen, this year, Berean Christian High School brought home two State Championships! 

And while we are pleased with all the Seniors have done, we are thrilled that they did all of those things with a charge to be "salt of the earth" and a "City on a Hill" as Jesus envisioned in His Sermon on the Mount. And no doubt, one of the thrills of being the principal of this school is receiving comments and emails from outsiders after they meet a group of our students for the first time! 

A few weeks ago, we gave our graduates a survey to let us know of their future plans and callings. Here's what the survey revealed about them…Their number one intended career choice is in the realm of Business and Finance. This was true for twenty-two percent of the class. Medicine was the second most popular career ambition, with eighteen percent making that choice.  Fourteen percent plan to become Engineers or Architects, while seven percent want to pursue a career in Computer Science. A handful would like to work in the Performing Arts, Journalism, Marketing, Education, and the Sciences. And ladies and gentlemen, I am pleased to announce this class has reported receiving scholarships to be used next year, that total $4,164,00! May they make the most of that blessing!  

Furthermore, I'm also proud to say that one graduate in this class has chosen to serve our country in the United States Armed Forces! Moreover, two graduates in this class have accepted a calling to take the gospel to the lost people groups of the world by becoming international missionaries. 

But everyone who trusts in Christ is called to the mission field – Yes, to take the gospel where it has not yet gone, but for most, to go to the mission field of their own backyard – the mission field of a business office, the mission field of an engineering firm, the mission field of a hospital, a school, a laboratory, a locker room, a secular University. For God has his people everywhere, in all walks of life, in different careers and professions, in different neighborhoods, and in different families. Why? So that his people can tell others how to have a better life? No, God has his people everywhere because two thousand years ago, a man rose from the dead!  The man, Jesus the Christ!

And in light of that, and as we send them off from this school, I want to remind them one last time of the essential questions of life – and the answers that will help them live for the glory of God wherever he takes them. The questions: Where did I come from? Why am I here? What's wrong with the world? And how can what is wrong be fixed?  

Where did I come from? Graduates, you are the crowning glory of the creation of God, made in his image with infinite status, value, and dignity. And every other human being you will ever meet, including the unborn, share that same status, value, and dignity. 

Why am I here? Graduates, you are here to make God look good, to glorify him, to delight in him, to honor him, and to worship him with your life - making much of Him as you maximize your talents, skills, and abilities. What might it look like if you lived that out to the utmost in your next life stage? 

What's wrong with the world? Graduates, when the rest of the world points fingers at political parties, economic policies, and other people as "what's wrong with the world," the Christian knows to turn that finger around and answer the question with one word, "Me." I am what is wrong with the world. Me and my sin! How can what is wrong be fixed? Or as the hymn writer wrote, "What can wash away my sin? Nothing but the blood of Jesus. The atoning death of the Son of God for sinners. "For our sake, he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God." 

Graduates, God has provided one way to fix what is wrong with the world, His son! May you bank on that!! And may you grasp it as the most essential truth in this world. And may you live in light of it for the rest of your lives. 

Class of 2023, May God bless you as you are shot into the world!

Nicholas Harris




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