This is the graduation speech that Ryan delivered to his graduating class a year ago. If any of you know our son, he is shy, reserved, and quiet. Yet he stood up there in front of several hundred and delivered this speech. It became utterly still in that gymnasium when he began talking about God at the end of his speech. As his mother, I cried. God was taking my boy and making a man out of him. Isn't that what parenting is all about? We have to trust God with our feeble human efforts, and He then does His work.
From Dependence to Dependence
Graduation June of 2012
by Ryan Miller
Today, the lines that have connected us to our parents are diminishing. We will no longer be completely reliant on our parents or guardians, but rather increasingly independent. I know that I and my fellow students have worked long and hard for this moment. It makes me tremble to think that we finally made it. For that reason, let me cut to the point.
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Despite the diminishing lines of dependence, we can never become completely independent. Consider this, our parents and teachers have worked just as hard or harder to get us to where we are today. They have labored through the thick and the thin, spent long hours thinking about us, and shed tears over us. They have been there for us when we most needed them. And for those of us without parents, we undoubtedly had someone else who served in their place. We cannot escape dependence. So instead, we should look on dependence as a need that fills a void in the human heart. It is a great privilege to have such wonderful people to fill that void. None of us would be here today if it was not for them.
My mom probably thought she would never live to hear me say this, but I would like to thank her from the bottom of my heart for teaching me grammar from that horrid text book! And my Dad I would like to thank for showing me how to love God with all my heart. And I would like to thank my English teachers in this school for showing me how to love writing. Honestly, I thought that I would never like anything except math and science! I would also like to thank Mr. Leddy, Mrs. Nelson, and Mrs. Lackey among many others for their devotion to teaching to the best of their abilities. Honestly, I do not think that any graduation speech could truly thank parents, grandparents, guardians, teachers, or administrators enough for their work!
However, the most important factor that got me to this point in life, was my faith in Christ Jesus. God was the one that I looked to when I could not sleep because of a test. He was the one that picked me up when I could not see the way. When I was frustrated, he calmed my soul. When I was thirsty, he gave me something to drink. It is God that I thank for being there when others could not.
As each of us sets out into the unknown, remember that we cannot run away from dependence. After all, children must rely on their parents; employees rely on their employers; and even the government must rely on the people to keep them in power. And ultimately, each and every person is dependent on God.
I can guarantee that each and every one of us will run into hard times. When those times come, place your dependence on God instead of earthly things. Do not place God on a dusty old shelf where you cannot see him. Instead, look to Him as the only way to success!