Worth a Thousand Handshakes :)

The school year is almost over and graduation is coming up. Such a momentous event calls for reflection. Time flies really fast, especially when you’re having fun. Once senior year rolls around, graduation is the main event. I know everyone’s busy, if not altogether done; some are still completing requirements, some are reviewing for exams while others are practicing for their graduation exercises. This event is really anticipated by a lot of people all around the globe especially parents whose pockets were really torn just to see their children stepping their foot on stage. But see, on both ends, parents or student, it is a time of great excitement when cap, gown and ceremony are full of such tradition and fill you with a sense of pride with all of your achievements.

But while it is certainly good to do everything in your might to make it to the march, I also believe that it won’t be helpful to make it the center of your life. Yes, it is for a fact that graduation implies success or the opportunity to move into the upper ranks of life but I guess it is not necessary to stake everything that we have solely on education or graduation. If you can just imagine, if u will not be able to make it, you will just feel emotionally bankrupt.

Last time, it happened that I have read an article about a prominent person. It urged me to make a graduation post, can’t help mentioning his name. I also thought of some things that we can somehow ponder especially those who are going through rough times in his/her academic life. It might be an encouragement for you to know successful people who strived so hard while going through an awful time of discouragement. One best example is Steve Jobs. Many found his life interesting. Probably, you have watched a movie about him where he was really an exemplary of a genius. Although not everything about Steve Jobs is worth emulating, he showed the perfect picture of success and the product of hard work instead of just merely education.

In a commencement address he delivered at Stanford some time in 2005, these were what he said:

To read the whole article, you can visit this site: (http://news.stanford.edu/news/2005/june15/jobs-061505.html)

I am honored to be with you today at your commencement from one of the finest universities in the world. I never graduated from college…

…17 years later I did go to college. But I naively chose a college that was almost as expensive as Stanford, and all of my working-class parents’ savings were being spent on my college tuition. After six months, I couldn’t see the value in it. I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life and no idea how college was going to help me figure it out. And here I was spending all of the money my parents had saved their entire life. So I decided to drop out and trust that it would all work out OK. It was pretty scary at the time, but looking back it was one of the best decisions I ever made. The minute I dropped out I could stop taking the required classes that didn’t interest me, and begin dropping in on the ones that looked interesting.

It wasn’t all romantic. I didn’t have a dorm room, so I slept on the floor in friends’ rooms, I returned coke bottles for the 5¢ deposits to buy food with, and I would walk the 7 miles across town every Sunday night to get one good meal a week at the Hare Krishna temple.


I have encountered people who became successful even without having graduated college and this is not to say that we all should be lax about education, but my point is, when a great blow in this area of our lives comes, let us be quick to counter despair with other options and a word of hope.

Of course, I will not let this message end without a word coming from God Himself. In Proverbs 19:21, God said, “Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.”

This is a powerful scripture which always changes my mind-set. Yes, many are our plans in life, plans to succeed, plans to bring honor unto one’s name and of course, plans to have greener pastures someday. For both students and people who support the students, many things in life will not turn out exactly as we expect or plan them to be but it is important to know that the workings of God’s hands always turn out for the best.

I can still remember the days when I dreamed to be a Certified Public Accountant but it didn’t happen as I expected it to be. I even stopped schooling and worked in a call center. And then, I went back to school and was so frustrated during my first year of college in education not knowing I was walking through the path where God wants me to pass. But time came when I realized, “Oh this is your plan, yeah! Gradually, I’m seeing it clearly.” These were my lines when I was in my second year of college. To put everything in a nutshell, well I am now a licensed teacher. Would it be possible for me to use my former course? Well God said yes! I’m happy to know that there are some schools which need accountancy lessons even for high school students. I really take heart with that. Someday… someday… knowing He makes all things work together for our own good. (Rom 8:28)

Funny to think that I graduated at the age of 23. Too young right? Haha. I mention some part of my story because I want to encourage others that while I may have missed out a lot of things, I see nothing lost. For in those years where people my age were pursuing dreams in the more common way, God also put me through the school of life. Really, many of my most priceless lessons came not just from college but by walking along the path the Lord has given me.

These were just last year, so you know, the whole grad pressure is still pretty fresh in my memory. This is also why I just want to end this by saying: CONGRATULATIONS TO ALL STUDENTS! I know you really tried your best and that is worth a thousand handshakes. Remember, graduation is not the end of everything. In many ways, it is only just the beginning. Life is 3D outside the academe. Trust me! 🙂



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