“Wow Buddy, you are a big boy now with your own phone!”
“I’m a big boy now!”
With these exchange of text messages, my son passed another rite of passage, he had his own cellular phone. It is a modern rite of passage, no less significant than learning to ride a bicycle or a young man’s first shave. Every society, culture, and religion embraces and celebrates rites of passage. In Jewish tradition, for example, the bot-mitzvah and bar-mitzvah herald the coming of age for girls and boys, respectively. At the age of 12 years for girls and 13 years for boys, they are welcomed as full-fledged members of the Jewish community and are considered adults. The ceremony involves a recitation of Jewish scriptures in Hebrew before the entire synagogue. It is a solemn and joyful rite of passage with very precise traditions to follow.
When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I gave up childish ways.
1 Corinthians 13:11 (ESV)
I treasure the various rites of passages my son has passed. Yet, my son’s most important rite of passage was not rehearsed or dictated by a carefully orchestrated tradition. It was when he confessed and repented of his sins and accepted Jesus Christ as His Lord and Savior. We would regularly sit together and read the Bible. One day I asked him who Jesus Christ was and without hesitation, he replied, “Jesus Christ is my Lord and Savior!” I was surprised and pleased by his answer but wanted to be sure that he understood what he was saying. Looking squarely in his face, I asked him, “What is sin?” My son quickly responded, “Sin is when I disobey God. I am a sinner. I need Jesus Christ.” At that moment, I knew my son had truly come of age. It was not marked with any ceremony. It was an honest confession of his need for his Savior, Jesus Christ.
Rites of passage.
My son is a young man with his own cell phone and now, he is much more. He has given up his childish ways. He is my brother in Jesus Christ.
Love and trust the Lord; seek His will in your life.