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  • Writer's pictureRandy McKenzie

50 Years Later

At the end of August, Gwendolyn and I made a trip back home to see our families and also to attend my 50-year High School reunion. Some people feel that going to reunions is a waste of time but in my mind I have always felt that spending time with friends is never time wasted.

I was not sure what to expect. Did not know if I still had anything in common with these people. I know I have changed on the outside a lot, but I have also changed on the inside.

Isn't it odd that when we look at each other, we can only see the outside, but nearly everything happens on the inside?

I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh.

Ezekiel 36:26

So Saturday night we headed to the reunion. I was not sure what these people thought of me. Not sure that I had lived up to their expectations. I think the biggest waste of time in life is comparing yourself to others. We must always remember that each of us matter, we are important, we are loved ,and that each of us bring to this world things that no one else can.

Before I formed you in the womb I knew you,

before you were born I set you apart;

I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.”

Jeremiah 1:5

I thought I wanted these people to remember me as an extraordinary athlete and a remarkable person and to love me. But as I have grown in my relationships I have learned that to be loved you do not need to be extraordinary. God loves us just as we are.

4 But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy,5 made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved.

Ephesians 2:4-5

I also know that no ones life is perfect.

I believe that one of the greatest illusions we have is that life should be perfect.

2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. 4 Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.

James 1:2-4

I was a bit afraid. However, I have learned over the years that everyone is a bit afraid, but we are less afraid together. You see fear has caused many of us to give up on our dreams. Imagine how many of our dreams would have been accomplished, if we were less afraid.

So do not fear, for I am with you;

do not be dismayed, for I am your God.

I will strengthen you and help you;

I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

Isaiah 41:10

So, I opened the door and walked in.

We all wore our High School pictures around our necks with our names so when we did not recognize the person we were talking to, which happened most of the time, we could hold up our photo. When I did this, I watched as the person reached back in their memory and a warm smile would usually appear on their face. Immediately they would remember me and tell a story about a time the two of us had spent together. Some stories I remembered. Some I did not. Some were good memories, some I replied, "I actually did that?" Then I would smile because I am now not the same person as I was back then. I have become a new person through my relationship with Christ and have learned that one of our greatest freedoms in life is how we react to things.

There was a memorial to all the classmates who had passed. I knew we had lost some, but I did not know there was so many. Some of their pictures brought back fond memories . It was sad and painful to see their photos.

Being there together and sharing fond memories, tears, and time, helped all of our hearts to find some peace again.

Though we loose people that we love, through fond memories, friendships, shared tears, and time, we can help heal our heats again.

I left with a great feeling. I was able to witness to several friends and I found out many were believers. We shared what Christ had done in our lives and how we had changed for the better through our daily walk with God.

It was good to go back home, back to my roots, fellowship with people from my past.

Sometimes in this busy world, I feel lost. There was a lot of love in that room.

Love brings us home. I think everyone is just trying to get back home.

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