Thursday, April 17, 2014

Convocation speakers sure to inspire

Students will hear from an impressive lineup of world-renowned leaders and celebrities this semester

As the fall semester at Liberty University gets underway, the town of Lynchburg, Va. prepares itself for visits from some of the world’s most recognizable names.

For the next 15 weeks, multitudes of students will file out of classrooms and dorms for the largest weekly gathering of Christian college students, known as Convocation, with hearts ready to soak in a wealth of wisdom and knowledge.

This semester, Liberty has brought together some of the most influential speakers from around the world, touching on many facets of society. From leaders in the field of finance like Rachel Cruze to those who have bravely defended our freedoms like Capt. Gerald Coffee, this semester is sure to stir the hearts of those who listen.

As I scrolled through the list of exciting speakers scheduled to open their hearts to the students, I found some instantly recognizable names, including professional surfer and shark attack survivor Bethany Hamilton.

ABOVE ALL ODDS — Hamilton surfs in professional competition. Photo credit: Nathan Rupert

Fighting against unbelievable odds, Hamilton found a way not only to survive, but to thrive, inspiring hearts across the nation with her autobiography and the major motion picture based off her life, “Soul Surfer.”

Willie Robertson, CEO of Duck Commander and beloved star on the hit TV show “Duck Dynasty,” is scheduled to make his appearance Sept. 27 during College for a Weekend (CFAW).

According to Johnnie Moore, vice president for communications at Liberty University, Convocation is an event unlike any other.

“Convocation is a quintessential part of the Liberty University experience,” Moore said. “Nowhere else, and at no moment in your life, will you be exposed so frequently (to) the caliber of guests that address our community each week.”

However, Convocation is much more than just a time to listen to leading experts. Where other colleges may encourage their students to do whatever it takes to achieve their goals, Liberty encourages utilizing honesty and morality in each profession.

“This semester, we’ve compiled a diverse list of some of the most influential people in the world,” Moore said. “They will dole out invaluable wisdom freely, and they will inspire our community to live their lives well. This semester is going to be unbelievable — just wait and see.”

As I reflect on these past Convocations that I have been blessed with attending, I realize just how much I have learned through listening to people like Cal Thomas, Judah Smith, Mike Huckabee and so many others. The list goes on, and the lessons learned never go away. It is truly a time of growth and motivation.

As I, along with thousands of others, step into the multipurpose dome that has serviced events of all kinds, I look forward with anticipation to hearing from some of the greatest leaders of our time.

I encourage all who are looking forward to Convocation to prepare their hearts and minds for a time of learning and growth from people who have walked the journey of life and given their talents and skills to the glory of God, considering all the magnificence and fame of this world inadequate.

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