The Chillicothe High School Baccalaureate (sponsored by the Chillicothe Ministerial Alliance) was held Thursday evening at Gary Dickinson Performing Arts Center. The CHS graduating class of 2016 dressed in their caps and gowns for the event, and listened to Pastor Joshua Vance of the Chillicothe Church of Christ give a message on trusting God and trusting in His plan he has for our lives.

The Chillicothe High School Baccalaureate (sponsored by the Chillicothe Ministerial Alliance) was held Thursday evening at Gary Dickinson Performing Arts Center. The CHS graduating class of 2016 dressed in their caps and gowns for the event, and listened to Pastor Joshua Vance of the Chillicothe Church of Christ give a message on trusting God and trusting in His plan he has for our lives. “You guys did it,” Pastor Vance said. “Thirteen long years, through the ups and the downs, trials and triumphs, you seniors did it, and I want to congratulate you.” Vance told the graduating class a story about how his niece likes to come over and play “doughnuts and dolls,” with him. She sets everything up just right and tells Vance exactly what to do. But when he messed up, she would get upset and dramatic and tell him he ruined everything. “I can see us doing that within our lives. We go through our seniors moments or high school life and we come up on a test or project that you spend all that time studying for and preparing for... and it’s coming up on midnight and you have to write the last five pages of your research paper and you’re screaming ‘My life is over; I’m not going to be able to pass this test.’ And then the very next day you come home and you say ‘I got an A.’ Complete 180.” “It doesn’t matter whether you are 40 or 16 or 18 or 60... I guarantee you every single person has had those moments at different ages saying ‘Life is over; everything is ruined.’... Trials and triumphs are going to come so put your trust in the Lord... Brothers and sisters, you’re going to have challenges in life, but at no point is everything ruined. Not when you have God on your side,” he said. Pastor Vance told seniors a little bit about Joseph. He told seniors that Joseph trusted in the Lord and in His plan even when he was sold into slavery by his brothers and later put in prison. He had many trials and triumphs throughout his life, and trusted in the Lord through all of them. “Throughout his life, Joseph’s entire life, he runs into trials and triumphs... same thing, seniors, that you’re going to go through in your lives. You’re going to have challenges. You’re going to have challenges of faith; you’re going to have challenges of time. You’re going to have challenges within your education. You’re going to have challenges within your job. Brothers and sister I tell you, put trust in God.” He said he likes to look at the story of Joseph when he thinks about the lives of seniors, and what they went through and what they are going to go through. Pastor Vance explained that when Joseph was in prison, he interpreted dreams and he got the opportunity to interpret the pharaoh’s dream, and he worked his way from the bottom to the top like many other times in his life. Later, his brothers had to come to Egypt and Joseph told them, “What you intended for harm, God intended for good.” “The sky is not even the limit when you have God on your side,” Pastor Vance said. “You’re here today because you made it. God’s been with you the entire time. Put your trust in God; keep your eyes fixed on the Lord, he said. “Joseph, despite everything, that he was going through he put his trust in God... he fixed his eyes on the goal. He fixed his eyes on what was at the end. And he knew that no matter what he went through, the end was better. God promised his people... Sometimes, we can get so overwhelmed... sometimes, we can just get so caught up in what we’re doing that we take our eyes off our path; we take our eyes off of our goal; we can take our eyes off of God.... Keep your eyes focuses on your goal and trust and put your faith in God. He’s gotten you to where you are right now and he will take you so much further. When you think that it can’t get any worse or it can’t get any better, guess what, it can. It can get so much better because of the promise God had given you. Trust in God despite your trials and triumphs and you will overcome.” The invocation was given by Pastor Rob Hurtgen of the First Baptist Church and scripture was read by senior Brett Clark and senior Kyle Ross. The senior Choraliers and Claire Chapman (clarinet solo) performed at the ceremony. Those in attendance sang “Amazing Grace” and “How Great Thou Art,” together during the program, and Father Benjamin Kneib of St. Columban Catholic Church gave the benediction.