For the last three and a half years I have been pursuing a Masters of Divinity degree in Counseling. Tomorrow I walk across a stage and receive my degree. The path to my degree has at times seemed long and difficult. However, I have been supported by amazing family, friends, and mentors far beyond what I could have ever imagined. This one is for you.
As I have written and rewritten this post, there are no words that adequately express my appreciation for you and all the ways that you have helped me. I cannot list off the names of those that have helped me to reach this point in my academic journey because I am fearful that I would leave someone off and perhaps it is even because I do not know all of the ways that I have been helped.
To my family, you have been there to support me emotionally, physically, and financially longer than I can remember. You have been the rock that has allowed me to stand up and become the person that I am today. I am not perfect and never will be but you have chosen to love me unconditionally and for that, I say thank you! I know that no matter what happens over the coming weeks, months, and years you will continue to love and support me in all the endeavors that I choose to pursue. This graduation would not be possible except for you.
Whether we have been friends for years or for just a short period your friendship has been essential. I have been blessed with friends from all walks of life, those that I agree with and those that I don’t. For those that I agree with, I am glad you know that we are right. For those that I disagree with, I appreciate you perhaps most of all for helping me to stretch my thinking which helps to make me a better person, counselor, and friend. Some of you have seen me in my worst moments when school or life seem to be too much, yet you chose to stay with me and help me through it. This graduation would not be possible except for you.
God has blessed me over the past several years with greater mentors than I could have picked for myself. From my years in college, to my journey in seminary I have never been short of great men and women who have spoken truth into my life. You have shown me what it is to succeed in life and in ministry but more importantly you have shown me how to react respectfully in failure. Whether stressed about an upcoming event, school, graduation, or the chaos of life, you were there to steady me and make sure that I stayed focus on Christ. You have often affirmed me in those crucial moments when I needed it most. This graduation would not be possible except for you.
Some of you fit in one or all of these categories. I wish that I could personally thank each and every one of you but that would be impossible because the number of you is far too great. I have been blessed beyond measure and I know that God has shown me an immense amount of undeserved grace and favor. Each one of you has been a unique blessing from God and without each and every one of you I would not be able to walk across that stage tomorrow morning.