Harris Encourages NGU Grads "Not to Settle"
North Greenville University held its spring commencement ceremony on a cool spring morning in Melvin and Dollie Younts Stadium on Thursday, May 5.
A record crowd of over 4,000 spectators watched a record graduating class of 331 undergraduates and graduates receive their diplomas. Mark Harris, Executive Worship Pastor and Artist in Residence at Gateway Church in Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas, was the keynote speaker.
“Life is in constant motion,” Harris said. “We’re all simultaneously both moving away from something and moving toward something. So today for you graduates, you’re moving away from the familiarity of the college classroom and moving into the big new unknown.”
Harris referenced Isaiah 43:19-20.
“God speaks through the prophet Isaiah. He talks about the new big unknown. ‘For I am about to do something new. See I have already begun. Do you not see it? I will make a pathway through the wilderness and I will create rivers in the dry wasteland,’ ” Harris read.
“Figuratively speaking, the pathway God makes through the wilderness and the rivers he creates through the dry wasteland literally could be you and me. If we lead the way God calls us to lead, then we will be the path that guides people that are lost in the wilderness, out of the wilderness. We will be the river that brings living water to the thirsty,” he said.
"I challenge you [graduates] today as you approach this new unknown. It takes people that are willing to dare, students who are willing to dream to be a part of that path that leads people out of the wilderness. I challenge you to be a river that brings life and sustenance to those who are in a dry wasteland. Will you step in with determination and faith? Will you be a difference maker or will you just be a settler and blend into the fabric of society,” said Harris.
Harris told the graduates that they have a choice. He asked if they will choose to be a settler, one who settles for something safe and easy or will they choose to be a Bannister referencing Roger Bannister, the man who was not willing to bury his talent and the first to run a sub-four-minute mile in 1954 at Oxford University.
He encouraged the graduates to “think big, dream big, and believe big.”
Harris was a member of the contemporary Christian groups Truth and 4Him, a solo artist since 2006, and worship pastor of the Bay Community Church from 2005 to 2012.
He has a bachelor's degree from Lee University and married to Jodie Harris. They have two children: Matthew, who is a member of NGU's spring 2016 graduating class and Maddison, who is a sophomore at Grand Canyon University.
In addition, at the conclusion of this address, Harris was presented an honorary Doctor of Christian Leadership by NGU Interim President, Dr. Randall J. Pannell, and Beverly Hawkins, chairperson of the NGU Board of Trustees.
Mass Communication Students Bring Home NRB Awards
Awards are designed to inspire, encourage excellence in producing Christian programming
Global Missions Conference 2013
Extreme Cause . . . Extreme Cost!
Alumnus Sees European Refugee Crisis as Opening for Faith
Philipp Meinecke (’00) knows eight languages. And he might get to use more than a few of them for his new ministry role in Germany.
#weareNGU Brings NGU Family Together on Social Media
Admissions staff members Erin Wall (’00) and Jenny Farnham Williams (’11) wanted to improve and increase NGU's reach...
New Giving Opportunity to Lower Educational Costs for Students
A new fund designed to make a quality, Christian education even more affordable.
Ask the Expert: Young Helps Leaders Learn How to Treat Guests
Ever wonder what it is about some places that make you want to come back again and again?
Date Set For Football's Annual Gridiron Golf Duel
The tournament format is Captain's Choice and will be played on Monday, July 16.
NGU Hosts 2019 ETS Southeast Regional Conference
Conference included 108 registered attendees, 67 academic papers presented.