BY DANIEL ALLEN |
Hi, I’m Daniel Allen, and as many of you already know, I will be graduating from high school this year and beginning a whole new chapter in my life. I will be attending Gardner-Webb University in the fall with a major in Sports Management and a minor in Communications. Before this drastic change in my life occurs, I would like to reflect on the years leading up to this moment, especially my 4 years in high school.
While I have grown physically and mentally, I like to consider my spiritual growth to be evident as well. This message will resonate with our youth especially, as many of them will be finishing middle-school in the upcoming weeks and beginning the most exciting, action-packed, and stressful years of their lives in high school. However, adults have also had their fair share of beginnings and endings (aside from their youth) dealing with changes in jobs, children graduating & leaving home (like I will be), and countless other examples. I would like to express the importance of having a positive attitude and embracing yourself to the changes occurring when you are ending or beginning a whole new chapter in your life. I’ve learned an ideal way to overcome the changes you will face from Zach Dease. He says that in order to let go of the past, you have to start fresh and avoid trying to make new things different from what they seem. Essentially, you must accept your new reality without trying to make it feel like the past. Doing this, as well as being optimistic, will significantly improve your new experiences and your view of them. When these new changes occur, it is vital to keep your faith in Christ without going astray from him.
I will admit, and many of you probably would as well, it’s really easy to become isolated from God when major changes occur in your life. When all of our lives were severely impacted from COVID-19, it really made me question my faith and wonder why God would allow this to happen. However, it seems like a reoccurring theme when I am having Bible study at my school’s FCA, youth group at my friend’s church, or youth group here at Friedland, that the Lord has a plan and we simply need to put our trust in him, and everything will turn out fine. Of course it’s easier said than done, but as we continue to grow closer to God through our unconditional love and faithfulness, we will continue to have fewer and fewer uncertainties and understand exactly what the Lord will eventually have in store for us.
As there’s many of you who are not anywhere near beginning a new chapter in your life, my biggest piece of advice for you is to not take the small things for granted. For me particularly, Laurel Ridge, youth group retreats, and meetings have always been incorporated into my schedule. Now, as I am coming down the final stretch of my senior year, it has really hit me how grateful I am for these experiences and how much I will miss them. In today’s society, it is becoming more and more common for us to rush through things without slowing down. That’s why I challenge you to slow down every once in a while and reflect on your past and thank Jesus for everything you have. Many of us, including myself, are uncomfortable with change. We just need to grasp the fact that change is inevitable and will always happen throughout our lives.
As long as we can keep our faith in the Lord and know that God has a plan, everything will be just fine, and possibly even better than it used to be. I’d like to thank my church family for helping me overcome changes in my everyday life. I can now confidently say that my transition into college will run smoothly.
About the author:
Daniel Allen lives in Winston-Salem and is a 2022 graduate of Ronald Wilson Reagan High School. In the fall, he will attend Gardner-Webb University to major in Sports Management with a communications minor. Daniel is a lifelong member at Friedland Moravian Church. He enjoys attending camp at Laurel Ridge, and serves as an RYC representative. His family includes parents Patrick & Heather Allen, and sister Rachel Allen. In his free time, Daniel likes watching sports and listening to music.