Pastor Jack Graham Encourages HSU at Convocation 2021

September 8, 2021 Jaidyn Kamplain

On Thursday, Sept.2, Hardin-Simmons University held its annual Convocation to celebrate the beginning of HSU’s 130th academic year.

Dr. Jason King, HSU Faculty President and Professor of English and Writing, set the tone for the ceremony by opening in a beautiful prayer.

“God, our Creator, Redeemer, and Sustainer, we commit this year of higher education to you with a hope of new beginning,” Dr. King prayed. “The world we look out to seems large, complicated, and often heartbreaking. But in all that is happening, may we always remember that you are as near as every breath we take and that you are always at work. May HSU be a place, Lord, where your presence is tangible and immediate, where divine wisdom and insight are constantly sought and eagerly received.”

Dr. Jack Graham, Hardin-Simmons alum and Senior Pastor of Prestonwood Baptist Church in Dallas, spoke on the values of Christian education and encouraged HSU faculty, staff, and students to continue boldly in their faith.

“Even though we are a part of different generations, it is one of the callings of life in our lives to pass the faith from generation to generation,” shared Dr. Graham. “That’s a great part of Christian education like Hardin-Simmons; through the generations, we are able to teach a new generation, decade after decade, the word of God and the testimony of Jesus integrated with academics at the highest level. “

Dr. Graham also shared what he would say to a younger version of himself when he was just beginning his education at Hardin-Simmons. Trusting in the Lord’s power, the truth of his Word, and the immense value of relationships were among the things he would say to a younger Jack Graham, and he took the opportunity at Convocation to encourage this generation with those same truths.

The focal point of Dr. Graham’s talk was Proverbs 3:5-6: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.”

“When we trust God and go all in on our relationship with him, then he directs your paths,” Dr. Graham stated. “Putting Christ first in your life is the way you experience the freshness and fullness of life.”