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Parent testimony: From tear-filled goodbye to joy-filled graduation day

June 3, 2014 | Roger McDaniel

Bobbie McDaniel graduated with honors from Evangel University in May 2014 with a degree in Nonprofit Business and Social Enterprise. His parents, Roger and LaVonne McDaniel, share their perspective on Bobbie’s experience as an Evangel student:

Bobbie was a good student during high school, graduating in the top 10 percent of his class. We have taken him to church regularly from the time he was born.  When he arrived at Evangel we observed him really buckle down and be responsible for his own studies, church attendance and spiritual life.

As Bobbie is our only child, we were really feeling the pain of loss when we loaded him up and moved him into the dorm his freshman year.

We still remember vividly the opening Chapel service when the freshmen made their way to the platform and were prayed for individually by the staff and administration of the university.  It was a very moving service and felt like we were dedicating him to the Lord again, just as we had done when he was a baby.

While carrying moving boxes into the dorm, we watched other parents pause before leaving for that long, quiet, tear-filled journey home to pray together as a family. Yet, it seemed alright, this was where Bobbie was supposed to be. As parents we had to let him go, trust the upbringing, and know God would be faithful.

The phone calls and visits home were more frequent during those first years. We’ve changed places during these four years, we now find ourselves introduced as “Bobbie’s parents.”  As his senior year came to a close, we watched him lead an evening Chapel service, introducing speakers and coordinating the music encouraging attendees to trust our God.  He is a fine young man confident who he is in the Lord and looked up to by his peers and mentors.

We are so proud of him. We would encourage other parents to cherish this time as it will pass quickly.

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