HIGH SCHOOL GRADUATES: BELIEVE IN YOU, NO MATTER WHAT!

I graduated high school over forty (40) years ago, and it was a different world back then. There were no computers, no laptops, and no internet. When writing research papers, we had to sift through the card catalog in the library and find the necessary books on our subject matter, and read them. There was no such thing as plagiarism or faking it. Also, we had to type our papers with a typewriter, and we used lift-off correction tape to correct errors.

My high school grading scale, I thought, was demanding. 100 – 95 was an A. 94 – 88 was a B. 87 – 81 was a C. 80 – 75 was a D. And below 75 was an F. Whenever I received an “A,” it was well earned.

Recently, my cousin informed me that her daughter was being inducted into the National Honor Society. For some unknown reason, it triggered a memory from many, many years ago. You see, when I was in high school, I was not inducted into the National Honor Society. This particular pain in my life inspired me to write the short vignette, “Looked-Over,” which I will be sharing with you.

To the high school graduate who may feel looked-over or over-looked, my advice to you is to always believe in yourself, no matter what. And more importantly, believe in God. Whatever gifts or talents God has blessed you with, your precious jewels will someday shine. So, keep polishing your jewels. In other words, keep striving to get better and better at what you do best, and your gift will take wings and soar in the sunlight.

Looked-Over

Sometimes, I can still feel that sharpness in my chest of many years ago. It was a pain that made me realized that life is not always fair. So, I thought.

When I was in high school, I was voted most studious in my senior high school class. I was one of three seniors who was nominated for most likely to succeed. At graduation, I received an award for outstanding school attendance (missing only four school days out of four years), and I received the award for the most outstanding foreign language student (completing four years of French and one year of Spanish). I was an honor graduate, originally ranking #8 and then slipping to #11 among all seniors, with a grade point average of 3.52. I was in the French Club and Library Club and lettered in both. I was listed in Who’s Who during my junior and senior year, and I was selected as A Distinguished American High School Student. Guess what? I was the only senior in the top 15 who wasn’t inducted into the National Honor Society. My guidance counselor told me that the reason for why I wasn’t inducted was because I didn’t play a sport. Can you believe that playing a sport was a criterion for being inducted into a club that supposedly was rooted in academics? Several students in both the senior and junior class expressed outrage because I was looked-over.

I was hurt by this deliberate omission, because I studied hard and worked hard in high school. Nevertheless, I continued to pursue life and my dreams. Well, life I am still pursuing, and some stuff that I thought was dreams has fallen by the wayside. With age, one grows in wisdom, and one learns to divorce oneself from the un-necessaries that don’t add an inch to the yardstick of one’s life.

I have learned that success is not measured by how many clubs you belong to, or by how much money you make, or by what type of job you have, or by which neighborhood you live in, or by what type car you drive, or by finite power (that’s here today, and gone tomorrow), or by fame and fortune. Rather, success is measured by the quality in which we treat people, by the time we set aside to emotionally and spiritually invest into people, and by how much we can love people. Thus, ultimate success is building strong bridges of friendships and relationships with people as we live this journey called life. If you want to leave the best of yourself while on this earth, leave footprints of love and kindness in people’s hearts, and you will always be remembered, because somebody is going to share your story and your love.

Not being inducted into my high school’s National Honor Society was not the end of the world. Being looked-over was a true blessing. Because when people look-over you, especially when you are well deserving of recognition, the universe has her way of balancing rights and wrongs. And she balances life—like a checkbook.

It may take days, months, or even years before wrongs are righted. But somewhere on your journey of life, you will experience a God-moment, and you will become spiritually aware that God has given you something very special and unique that cannot be looked-over or over-looked.

God has blessed me with the gift of inspiration that gives people hope, and I don’t miss being looked-over by my high school’s National Honor Society committee one bit. But I do miss some of the friendships and relationships that I built along the way. I only wish I took better care of them.

I am experiencing joy and passion as I write this short story, because I have come a long, long way since my high school days. I thank God for the looked-over times in my life. I have become a richer person because of them—in faith, in hope, and in love. What a joy it is when the candle of your life can be a light to others.

 

6 thoughts on “HIGH SCHOOL GRADUATES: BELIEVE IN YOU, NO MATTER WHAT!”

  1. Very good blog. Being looked over in high school especially will cause young ones not to strive for performance. Therefore it so important for parents as well as the child to ask the guidelines counselor questions about scholarships, awards and medals etc. If the person don’t speak up they will continue to be looked over..I try to be active in my child school and communicate with her teachers to let them Know​ I am very involved in my child work. She will be and Junior this up coming school year . I will be looking into scholarships and other things that she is entitled to. Thanks for the I formation for I can stay on top of my child well being. I can use this knowledge as well as on the job. Not being promoted or recognize for performance. Thanks so much.

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    1. You are very welcome. A student should always strive for excellence regardless if no one recognizes, appreciates, or acknowledges a student’s efforts. The point that I was trying to make in the short vignette, “Looked-Over,” was that even though I had an excellent high school academic record, I was not inducted into the National Honor Society. So, when people do not validate you or affirm your gifts or talents, this is no reason to give up on yourself or your dreams. If you believe in God and in yourself, God and you are the MAJORITY! And God will open up wonderful doors in your life that no one can shut! God bless you.

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      1. Yes very true no one should never give up on their dreams. However some people do when they feel that they’re not being acknowledge for their achievements. Thanks for replying to my post. I read your blogs every week the information so I formative. Thanks

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      2. God inspired me to create this blog, and to God goes the glory. I am so very happy that you visit the blog weekly and that you find the content helpful. Keep the blog in your prayers. Amen.

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  2. Yes my daughter was in honor society. All through school.she was one point from being amongst the top of her class…I was furious at first.then I said.the ones that ate sitting amongst the high.can fall to a low.as long as you are focused.you will succeed. She will be a junior at James Madison university this fall.I’m proud.a lot of excellence in these schools go unseen and unheard.

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    1. Thank you very much for your comment. Being the valedictorian or salutatorian or the most popular in high school does not define success. Success in life are the kind little things that people do to bring a ray of joy, a ray of sunshine, a little bit of love in another person’s life. I am confident that your daughter has done just that, of which you should be proud! As your daughter matriculates James Madison University, my hope and prayer is that she continues to shine academically, and after graduation, she makes a difference in the lives of many. Frequently tell your daughter that you are very proud of her, because your encouragement makes all the difference in the world. God bless you.

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