This sunday was promotion sunday at our church. My daughter was especially excited about this because it marked her first sunday as a youth! This had several meanings for her; she got to start going to the youth building for sunday school and she no longer was expected to sit near a parent, either us or another one during church but she was expected to sit with the youth group. She has been planning this moment all summer!
Promotion sunday is not such a big deal in the adult departments. We really don't move, the class just reclassifies itself as an older one and we keep going. Occasionally, a couple will 'move' on to an older class but most of us just keep going, and going, and going to the same class. When we first started going to this church about eleven years ago, we went to a young married class. We were between the ages of 25-35 so we fit right in. We are still classified as a new married class but most of us have youth and some even have college kids! We all laugh that we are the oldest young married class in the history of Baptist churches!
Growing up means different things to different people at different stages of life. To my daughter, growing up means sitting apart from us at church. To each of us though, it means more responsibilities and higher expectations. Sitting apart from your parents means you have to take it upon yourself to not talk, pass notes and generally act like a kids. To an adult, growing up means getting a job and making grown-up decisions about your life; where to live, who to marry, etc.
I think back to when I was a new youth. I was so excited to pull away from my parents and become someone different. Now, looking back, I see that I've pretty much come full circle. I pulled away, but like a june bug on a string, I circled around and am now back in the same spot that I left my parents years ago. Except this time, I am the one standing still while my own children are pulling away. Makes me look at my own parents with new eyes. Eyes that have new appreciation for what they have done......