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Class of 2018 Commits to Run with Horses

“Unless the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain who build it. Unless the Lord guards the city, the watchman keeps awake in vain.” (Psalm 127:1)

The faculty and staff of Little Rock Christian Academy are devoted to building lives in Jesus and to assist the Church in building up the body of Christ. That said, we labor in vain if we do not surrender to the ever-present work of the Spirit.

Commencement 2018 was a picture window into the house of Warriors and the building going on inside. From the testimonies of the evening, it is clear that the Spirit is alive and well and working among us. Commencement speaker, Mr. William Dillard, III, challenged our graduates to run from conformity and comparison and to run to community and wisdom. Student Government President Grace Crain winsomely reflected back on the journey; Salutatorian Weston Northington humbly asked honest, thought-provoking questions; Valedictorian Nicholas Powell lovingly entreated his peers to live for eternity. Ashton Dollar, Rose Johnson, and Jenna Auel harmonized a prayer in song. Let me share what the Lord placed in their hearts.

Bill Dillard, III, Senior Vice President, Dillards, Inc.

Graduates, imagine a future you love: one of flourishing individuality, security in your identity; purpose and meaning on a daily basis; and rich, life-giving relationships. It’s all there for you guys, but you have to run for it. Your race course will change. You will change. The race of life will twist and turn and will present both exhilarating highs and devastating lows. And God will be for you the whole way.

What will you do with your heritage? This freedom, this prosperity and this knowledge of the gospel. Realize you have been given these things for a higher purpose. The world is waiting.

The apostle Paul said it best: "Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as toget the prize." Ready. Set. Go!

Grace Crain, Student Government President

For some, high school is an individual sport, but for the Class of 2018, I truly believe that we have tackled the last four years with a team effort. Each one of us has contributed our unique talents and gifts to create a diverse and loving student culture ... Forever, in our hearts, we will pause when we hear words or phrases like: Warrior, Emu, Blue Ribbon, The Golden Triangle, Worldview, #65, and Community.

Nicholas Powell, Valedictorian

Charles Lowery said, “Every day the world rolls over on someone who is sitting on top of it.” We’ve all heard of “the ladder of success,” that worldly ladder that promises wealth and satisfaction at itspeak. Some of us are simply on the first few rungs of the worldlyladder. In college, we’ll grow in popularity and gain a few rungs. After that, we’ll get that dream job, that perfect family, that dream home and climb even higher. Maybe

some of us will reach the top. Maybe some of us will sit on the top of the world. But the world is constantly moving, indifferent to who is perched on top of it. And if we climb that ladder, before you know it, the world will throw us off our throne and roll right over us.

The world is indifferent to how hard we work, to how much we sacrifice to get to the top.

But God looks at us differently. To Him, we are not just a cog in the machine or the next domino in this world of cause and effect. If you have received Christ and put your faith in Him, you are a child of Christ. We’ve heard it for all of our years at this school, but maybe it will take one more time for the magnitude of that truth to sink in. You are a child of the King of Kings. But when we leave the shelter of this school and step onto the collegiate stage, the world will not respect our heredity.

No, if we live for the King of Kings, we may not be rewarded with riches and gold. Instead, our reward will be eternity. So strive to be successful, but don’t be successful for the world. Listen to what God wants for you, and be successful in Christ. 

Weston Northington, Salutatorian

  • What can I say to the person who 3D printed a hand for a little girl to gain a little more normalcy in her life?
  • What can I say to someone who has released an EP and is about to release an album?
  • What can I say to the girl who, at 18 years old, became a manager at Chick-fil-a?
  • What can I say to the athletes who use their boundless perseverance, physical endurance, and commitment to win too many championships for me to list?
  • What can I say to the kids who worked their tails off to attend a military academy and serve our country?
  • What can I say to the foreign exchange students who traveled halfway across the world to be with us here today to hear their commencement in their non-native language?
  • What can I say to the under represented minorities in our class who had to over-represent their communities with their actions?
  • What can I say to the girl who chose to live out of her car rather than face abuse in her home?
  • What can I say to the kids who struggle daily with incapacitating thoughts, yet choose to bring a smile to others, or to the kids who had life fighting against them, but chose to fight on and are here with us to walk across this stage today?
  • What can I say to the men and women of a hundred different backgrounds gathered in this room today for a single reason?

The only thing I can say is ... “well done!”

Ashton Dollar, Rose Johnson, Jenna Auel performed “I Hope You Dance” by Lee Ann Womack

I hope you never lose your sense of wonder
You get your fill to eat
But always keep that hunger
May you never take one single breath for granted
God forbid love ever leave you empty handed

I hope you still feel small
When you stand beside the ocean
Whenever one door closes, I hope one more opens
Promise me that you'll give faith a fighting chance
And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance
I hope you dance.

Class of 2018, this is the year of your bloom. This is the year you committed to run with horses. You decided to do more than that. You decided to become a racehorse and win the race. You decided to be Seabisquit. I am humbly proud of you. I am humbly proud of Warriorville.