I was driving to my job at the homeless shelter. I was dead stopped, stuck in a clot of commuters when I noticed a sign on the side of the road. On it were painted blue letters against a white background “our life in not chance, its choices.”

Your life is choices not chances. Hmmmmm!

You’ve chosen your adventure. I can remember my leaving the nest. Mine wasn’t as comfortable or secure as our nest, father – mother, son, support, trust, openness but it was my nest. One day I chose to pack up my old white battleship of a Buick with all my guitar gear and my best friend, Eddy, and all his drums. On the side windows of the back seat we had pictures of James Brown, Otis Redding, and Wilson Pickett, our patron saints of Soul Music. We were the blues brothers’ long before John Blushi and Dan Ackroid. In fact, I often wonder if the script writer for that movie had been following us in those early years. Then I wonder how many other blues brothers were doing the very same thing at the very same time, leaving the nest, going off to live the life that would lead to records, headliner shows, money, fortune and fame. I still wonder.

So it’s not chance that has me here this morning excited and worried about you and your friends packing up and hitting the road for an adventure.

This trip is your choice and I know you enough to know that if all the other guys were ready to give up, call it quits because of the strained effort to do this thing, that your voice would be the loudest to urge everyone on. You would make it work because you want to do it.

You think you know what you’re doing, you think it’s no big deal, but believe this, it’s one of the biggest deals or choices you’ve ever made in your 18 years of life.

Don’t misunderstand me. I’m not trying to instill fear, quite the opposite; I’m reminding you that God always has your back. Jesus, a mystery to you now, is your friend, your power, and your strength.

I’ve tried to raise you to believe in yourself, your power and your strength, but it was Jesus teaching me to teach you, so, when the time is right you will know it’s not all about you.

Where there is faith there is no fear. Your adventure is about finding out who you are and it’s a life time adventure, this is just one event.

Choose wisely and come home less a boy and more of a man to the parents who live to love you.