It’s like clockwork.

Most mornings on my way to school, I see a husband and wife — probably in their 80s — walking together down Fourth Avenue. I’ve never met them and don’t know who they are, but I’ve learned much from them. They’re holding hands, going at their own pace, supporting each other. Sure, they aren’t moving very quickly, but they are moving and moving forward. And the beautiful thing is they’re doing it together, in relationship with each other and completely committed to one another. It’s so obvious they deeply love each other (he holds her hand, she smiles at him, he pats her back). I find myself missing them when I don’t see them.

The clear demonstration these two provide makes me think about the kind of world I wish we were living in.

It makes me think about the world children are growing up in and how those worlds are, often, at odds with each other.

What’s there to do? We fill the gap with wanting something better for kids. We fill the gap with encouragement. We fill the gap with hope.

To the children of Sioux Center:

  • I hope you understand this world is not how it was intended to be but that you can be active in making it better, the way God created it to be.
  • I hope you have open eyes, hands, hearts and minds to see, do, feel and think — but especially to do.
  • I hope you get so fired up about something that you take it upon yourself to make positive change and invite others to join you.
  • I hope you know that no politician or political party, leader, government, adult, group, friend — or anything or anyone else — can save you or has all the answers. I hope you know and believe in Jesus Christ, the One who can and does, and find your identity in Him.
  • I hope you come to understand — deep in your gut — what you believe, stick to it when it’s hard, live out of it but be willing to change if needed.
  • I hope you develop a habit of finding information for yourself, analyzing it and critically discerning what to believe and what to ignore.
  • I hope you’re willing to admit when you’re wrong. I hope you’re then willing to make it right.
  • I hope you understand that your habits, choices and how you spend your time are things you do, but they also do something to you.
  • I hope you’re kind.
  • I hope you love others more than yourself.
  • I hope you see the good and do something about the bad.
  • I hope you keep hope.

This world needs you! Like the couple on Fourth Avenue, I hope you do it together, go at your own pace, support each other, move forward. I hope you know you’ve been created for a purpose, and I hope you use that purpose well — for good.

You have an army of adults in this community cheering you on, willing to help, ready to serve and looking forward to seeing you thrive. Use this opportunity well!