Faith grads hear about purpose, potential, power
By Becky Barclay
Published in News on May 19, 2013 1:50 AM
Rachel Collier smiles along with her fellow graduates during Faith Christian Academy graduation. The Christian faith based school graduated 16 students. The valedictorian for Faith Christian Academy Class of 2013 is Abigail Lynn Pierce.
Not even a head-on accident with an 18-wheeler could stop Aaron Hill from graduating with his class at Faith Christian Academy. He and 15 other classmates turned their tassels Friday night at a graduation ceremony.
Hill was sitting at a red light Nov. 19, 2012, when he got the green turn signal.
"Before I knew it, I saw a tractor trailer coming at me and he ran the red light," Hill said.
Hill got out of the accident with just a hip dysplasia, which didn't keep him out of school too long, but did make the basketball player miss a couple of games.
He said the biggest challenge during his time at Faith Christian Academy was getting all the work done on time.
"Honestly," he admitted, "I'm a procrastinator. "But my greatest joy was graduating tonight. I just never thought it would be here this fast."
Although Hill hasn't decided on his future career, he does want to go to college and play basketball.
The biggest challenge for Faith's salutatorian Kayla Johnson was trying to keep up her grades while playing sports and holding down a job.
But the joy of being with her classmates -- and friends -- more than made up for the challenges.
She said she wouldn't be the person she is today without having gone to a Christian school.
"We got to learn about God and learn how to grow spiritually," she said.
In her speech, Ms. Johnson thanked the parents at the graduation ceremony saying, "Many of you have sacrificed daily for us. You have taught us that the most important things in life are not always the most convenient. By sending us here and sacrificing, you have taught us that we should always put God first in our lives."
In her speech, valedictorian Abigail Pierce told her classmates and others that Faith Christian Academy isn't just an institution of learning, but also a haven for spiritual growth and development.
And she said that commencement is not the end, but a beginning, a start.
"Tonight is the beginning of a new chapter in our lives," Ms. Pierce said.
During his challenge to the graduating seniors, pastor Dann Patrick talked about something that every student and faculty member of Faith Christian Academy could be found carrying around the school -- an ink pen.
He listed the three Ps of a pen. First is its purpose, which is to write.
"There's ink in that pen and when it fulfills is purpose, we write with it," Patrick said. "God has a purpose and plan for every person in the world and especially for this class. How sad it would be to not serve that purpose God has called us to."
The second P is potential.
"I challenge you graduates to fulfill the potential in your lives and know the blessing of God in your life," Patrick said. "There is potential for good and the potential for bad. I challenge you to find God's purpose and fulfill our potential."
The third P is power.
"This pen has no power apart from me," Patrick said. "When you have found your purpose fulfilling your potential, that's when God will furnish you with power. May God help us learn the lesson of this pen."
Rachel Collier has been learning the lesson of the pen during her years at Faith Christian Academy.
"I definitely would not have been where I am spiritually if I had gone to a regular high school," she said. "This place, every day we hear the word of God and it just builds onto our faith. It teaches why we love God and what Christianity is. I couldn't have made it without faith."
She said the lessons she's learned at the school have prepared her to go out into the world and tell everyone about God and share his love with them."
And she'll carry with her the friendships she's made at Faith Christian Academy.
"It's the small things I'll remember," she said. "Just the small things -- like the little inside jokes that my class had."