Tag Archives: High School

Sixty Years Older

I think that if my Grandma and I were the same age that we would be friends, maybe even best friends. She is sixty years older than me but I can just imagine either me going back to the 1950’s or her growing up now. I think when I would first meet her it would be that type of experience where you say to yourself, “I want her to be my friend”. She is playful and Christian and funny and clever and quirky and smart and noble and a tom boy and resilient and confident and joyful and faithful and trustworthy and optimistic and kind and a hard worker and brave and respectful and marches to her own drummer and easy to talk to and fun and thoughtful and always has a song in her heart and independent and positive.

She has all the qualities of a perfect friend and all the qualities of who I want to be.

Maybe I’ve been looking for a best friend who is just like my Grandma — and hopefully I know I’ve found her. But it would be nice to have more people like my Grandma at my school, or rather more in the world.

Maybe it’s unfortunate that my Grandma and I weren’t born in the same era or maybe it is perfect that way. I may not have her as my high school best friend but I have her as my role model who is only a phone call or a short car ride away. I would love to have her as my best friend but I love it even more to have her as my Grandma.


I Am So Glad

I am so glad that I don’t have a friend who worries about having the in-style jeans,

but instead she has the seemingly out-of-style response of actually answering truthfully when asked “How are you?”

I am so glad that I don’t have a friend who is concerned about having blonde highlights in her hair,

but instead having the highlights of kindness, respect, love, and joy in her life.

I am so glad that I don’t have a friend who listens to the ‘dirty music’,

but instead jams out to Christian artists.

I am so glad that I don’t have a friend who constantly complains that “Life sucks”,

but instead she complains that too many people are ungrateful for how amazing life is here.

I am so glad that I don’t have a friend who is obsessed with money,

but instead she is obsessed with raising money for her charity 30 Famine for starving children.

I am so glad that I don’t have a friend who complains about school,

but instead makes me realize time and time again how I appreciate my education.

I am so glad that I don’t have a friend who is distracted by boys,

but instead knows what to focus on and unwilling to change her boundaries.

I am so glad that I don’t have a friend who goes ga-ga over Cure for Wellness

but instead geeks with me about The Lego Batman Movie.

I am so glad that I don’t have a friend who anxious about her make-up being top-notch

but instead cares about top-notch values.

I am so glad that I have you,

my best friend.



Priorities, Textbooks, and Bible Verses

My mother does a sign out by the road at our church and on the first week of school – just as reliable as teachers giving out syllabuses – she puts on the sign: It’s time for A B C and G O D.

One of the reasons why we go to school is to hone our talents to better use them to serve God. So then throughout the school year we should keep this in mind. If we set up our priorities the first day of school, then the rest of the school year will follow those priorities. God comes before grades and even in itself, learning. God should come first before anything in our lives.

Now I’m not speaking from a high self-righteous pedestal, but instead as someone who slowly let my strong and close connection with God slip due to different factors, priorities and school included.

I’ve always said that God comes first before anything but sometimes you need to take a step back and see if your actions line up with your beliefs.

For years I’ve always had Bible verses hanging up on the inside and outside of my locker. Before homeroom, during passing time, before and after lunch, at the end of the day, I would read and recite my locker’s Bible verses. They would give me strength and refreshment for the next part of my day.

This past year I didn’t hang up Bible verses. I only put a magnet with a Bible verse on the outside of my locker.

I knew that I was going to be taking harder classes than I ever had before and I needed to use every spare second of my time to study. My textbook was my bus buddy and my lunch date. So I figured that I wouldn’t put up my locker Bible verses because I would need to study instead.

Remember how I had said that I needed every spare second to study, well, reading my Bible verses were not spare seconds, they were needed seconds.

I wouldn’t say that I lost my close connection with God, I just let it slip. Instead of growing my relationship with Him, I let it go stagnate. I grew in my academic knowledge, but was stagnate in my relationship with Christ. However, I firmly believe that people can be pursuing God and life and grow in both. We just need our priorities straight.

I also had an “un-reconciled spiritual difficulty” and I had figured that time would fix and heal it. I was wrong again. Problems won’t go away with time but solutions need to be actively sought. Just like God needs to be actively sought to keep and grow a close, strong connection.

So this year I’m actively seeking God with my locker Bible verses, inspirational quotes and Bible verse cards, Bible magnets, reading extra devotional books, talking more about my faith. It is not easy, but it is simple. Focus on God.

“You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.”

-Jeremiah 29:13

“So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”

-2 Corinthians 4:18



School starts soon and

I’ve got everything ready.

All my binders are different colors

and the covers are decorated in pretty card-stock

that my mother bought me

and my name and class is written in purple pen

with a frame that is cut with those silly scissors whose blade’s are zig-zagged.

In a neat organized pile are my pictures for my locker

just waiting to be hung up.

I’ve had my first week,

not just day,

clothes picked out for three weeks now.

My backpack is something a boy scout should be proud of,

money, cold medicine and tissues, graphing calculator, extra lead, hair-tie and bobby pins, extra pencil erasers, stick-y-notes, mint, school ID


A necklace that will go with any outfit in case if I am rushing in the morning

random things that only I will need,

a balloon, a magnet, a tennis ball

(even though I don’t play tennis)

I don’t have the kitchen sink,

but I do have hand sanitizer.

Last year I had four flashlights,

but I think I am okay with only one.

6 pencils, 4 highlighters, 3 colorful pens, 1 Sharpie

A 5oo page notebook that cost too much at Staples,

A Superman flash drive that my aunt bought me,

A birthday card in case if I forget it’s someone’s special day,

My calendar is all written out including what days are Final Exams,

Locker comb memorized and just in case saved in my phone,

Extra line paper

blank paper

coloring book paper

graph paper

. . . and yet somehow I am not prepared.

Me, the inside me,

I am not ready.


The Simple Goal

It’s such a simple goal

It’s comes so easy to us

It comes with little thought

but just a small ‘Yay!’

Yes, we might practice on our form

or distance

But nothing like this

Biting down hard on his lip

The look of concentration in his eyes

The force behind the throw

The ball leaves his finger tips

Archs high in the air

. . . and misses











A hundred times over

The sweat dripping down his neck

His hair damp from the effort

His shirt wrinkled

He takes the ball

Gets a firm grip


His wheelchair kicks back against the force

He watches the ball, longingly wishing it would swoosh inside the net

It circles the rim

and falls

on the other side

Another miss

I run across the gym floor for the ball

I put the ball inside his reach

He looks at me

He shakes his head

He wants to give up

He is tired

He knows he’ll never make it

He’s done this so many times

Each time so close

but not close enough

He can’t do it

It’s not possible

“Hey, I know you’re tired.

But keep on trying.

We can do this.

YOU can do this.”

His hands slowly move forward

and takes the ball

He paws his fingers forward

Moves the ball into the position he has done so many times

each time with the ball missing by an inch or two

He throws


I run for the ball

I pray

“Dear God,

This means so much for him.

Please let him do this.


I turn around

His hand is up to his face


his whole body shows it

I move the ball around in the air

trying to get his attention.

I call his name.

“I know you can do this.

You are so close.

All this has been practice

and this time you can make it.

Come on, you can do this!”

He takes the ball

He throws the ball

He misses

I run for the ball across our side of the gym

No one sees his struggle

No one seems to think it matters

They should

They don’t see his smile

when the ball hits him in the face

and he laughs

They don’t see when he is trying

but can’t seem to do ‘good enough’

They don’t see his longing looks at the other kids

to be like them

To move

To use his legs

To carry on a conversation

I am jumping up and down by this point

“You are doing awesome!

This is all on you.

You can do this!”

I emphasize each word with a jump.

I look at the clock

one minute until gym is over

I throw the ball to him.

He catches it awkwardly, like he always does

But he catches it and that makes it beautiful.

He looks at me.

I nod my head vigorously.

He bites down on the left side of his lower lip

Moves the ball into position.

The ball leaves his hands

I hear his wheelchair kick back from the force he puts on the ball.

The ball arches perfectly.

The ball rolls on the rim

. . . and falls in.

The net swooshes.

The ball falls

The ball bounces.

The music is cut

and the coach yells to clean up.

I turn

and see the biggest smile

He starts laughing

I start jumping again

I praise him on what an accomplishment it is.

“I am so proud of you!

You worked so hard

and you made it!”

I look around at all the others in the class

knowing all too well that they could have done this feat so easily

But they aren’t the ones who practiced non stop

But they aren’t the ones who are in a wheelchair

But they aren’t the ones who kept going when they were tired

It’s such a simple goal

It’s comes so easily to us

It comes with little thought

but just a small ‘Yay!’

But life is not fair

Some people struggle to do the simplest things

The simplest tasks can take a great amount of effort

Nothing like the satisfaction in himself he feels when it is done.

He softly whispers,

“We made a basket.”

 Håkan Dahlström / Foter / CC BY

Håkan Dahlström / Foter / CC BY