TO: Madam Esther
FROM: Daniel [Press Sectretary]
DATE: May 13, 2020
SUBJECT: Commencement Speech- Draft
Here's a draft of the commencement speech you've requested.
Please review and advise. I'll revise it accordingly.
Thank you faculty, staff, students, and parents.
Today is a significant day in an extraordinary time.
Today, we are experiencing a graduation none of us in this room has ever experienced before.
On our graduation day, we did not sit six feet apart or join in with a Zoom ID# in our pajamas and sweatshirts.
Well, maybe some of us did wear pajamas and sweatshirs on our graduation day.
On my graduation day, I did not have 24/7 internet connection, endless streaming of shows and information right at my fingertips.
I did not have Instagram, FaceBook, and Twitter to let the world know that I was "woke."
On my graduation day, if I wanted the world to know that I was "woke," I had to fight for it.
And once in the battle, I had better have something to say, something actually to show to justify my place in the battle.
So before I entered the arena, I prepared.
I prepared for more than necessary not just to win but to turn it around.
I turned their offense into their defense. My opponents had to defend themselves against me.
Many of you know my humble beginnings.
I was a virtual nonentity.
I did not have a family name to get me into places.
In fact, our family would have been completely obliterated had it not been for God's protection.
And being a woman wasn't an asset in the arena that I was in.
In preparing for this day, I reflected upon what got me to this point.
Despite all the disadvantages, what was it that enabled me to speak to you today?
What was that pivotal moment in my life?
From very early on, even younger than all of you, I believed that God put me on this earth for a purpose.
God put me exactly with the person who took care of me, He put me exactly at a school I needed to be, and He put me exactly under the tutelage of the teachers and the mentors througout my younger years.
Not only that, God allowed me to know Him from very early on.
I put my complete trust in Him and He blessed me with the right people around me.
I believe God's favor was upon me.
One of the significant moments in my life that I remember is a time when I was at a women's conference watching a speaker on the stage.
You would all probably recognize the name if I mention it.
This speaker was very famous and there were about 500 people at this event.
There were journalists and crews from local newspapers and TV stations.
When she walked onto the stage and introduced herself, she said, "I'm so and so. I go by the pronoun, she, her, hers."
Now, that was the first time I've heard of such an introduction.
Yes, I've heard about preferred pronouns by the LGBTQ community.
But, I've never encountered someone introducing themselves that way.
And, as far as I knew, the speaker was a straight, heterosexual woman.
But apparently, to be politically correct, she felt the need to introduce herself that way.
After that conference, this topic of preferred pronoun kept lingering on my mind.
How do I, as a Chirstian, respond to this?
This propelled me to write an article that I posted on FaceBook.
It was nothing more than my thoughts and prayers.
But people noticed it.
They re-posted and wrote a lot of comments, some bad, but mostly good.
The article inadvertently garnered a lot of attention.
It eventually led to a prominant talk show host contacting me.
I didn't know at that time that the talk show host was a Christian.
It turned out that she was looking for a, sort of a, protege:
a fresh, young Christian woman to be the poster child in our battle against the emgerging cultural norms of this age.
Of course, I believe God ordained it.
His fingerprints are all over my life.
But He also equipped me with the right heart to prepare.
Far before this event, I diligently studied the Word of God, I diligently did my school work. I diligently did my homework, you could say.
I worked hard everyday to utilize my time to the best of my abilities. I was an early riser and began my day in the Word, prayer, and worship.
I was the valedictorian at my high school graduation.
I believe it's this preparation that God put me exactly where I should be, exactly at the right time.
He knew I had to be fully armed. So before He clothed me in the full armor of God, He first gave me the desires of His heart.
He gave me the desire to prepare, to learn, and to be bold in speaking the truth.
That is why sometimes, I am labeled the most politically incorrect or even offensive.
You, class of 2020, are placed exactly where you should be for such a time as this.
As you look into the horizon of your future, remember who you are, where you are, and why you are here.
In this extraordinary time, we are faced with many uncertainties and challenges.
Many of us, including me, have not faced this type of pandemic at this global scale in our lifetime.
At the same time, many of us did not have the technological scale upon which to reach out to any part of the world the way you are able to.
That puts you in a unique position to do something.
Yes, there's fear about our wellbeing, fear about the economy, fear, especially for you, of whether you will be able to get a job tomorrow.
And sometimes, it's ok to feel fearful.
But don't let your fear be prolonged.
Don't let your fear immobilize you.
Use your fear to move you to take action.
You, class of 2020, the graduates of this fine institution, are armed with the full armor of God, to proclaim the truth and speak up against the insidious claims of the zeitgeist of this age.
To speak up against those who say he can be a she, truth is what you believe to be, and the creation is the god.
And you, class of 2020, unlike the women of my generation, need not wait for the golden scepter to be raised to make your entrance.
So, I charge you to be bold, yet prudent.
Observe the signs of the times.
Know that you have been called at this moment, for this time.
As I sit here and look at your bright faces through this Zoom video, I have no doubt that God will use each and every one of you for His purpose.
You have prepared well. This is the beginning of your reward.
I wish you light, gladness, joy, and honor.
Well done class of 2020!
God bless you.
God bless all of us.