Hilary Ritchie’s Commencement Reflection on Humility

At the midday Spring 2013 Commencement ceremony for Bethel University, the senior reflection was delivered by History/Biblical and Theological Studies major Hilary Ritchie (’13). The text of her remarks (which encouraged her peers to “Pursue Humility After Life at Bethel”) is now available at the Bethel website. (This is the second time in as many months that Hilary has represented us on Bethel’s home page!)

Here’s a sample of her reflection:

Hilary Ritchie ('13)Humility may seem like an unlikely topic for a graduation message, but in the end, I think as Christ-followers, humility should be what we pursue after life at Bethel.  True humility must come from a denial of entitlement. True humility must come from our very core. Since we live in the shadow of the cross and the light of the resurrection, we realize that, because of the grace of Christ, we have no right to our lives. A mindset of entitlement can be an easy trap to fall into, especially as we reflect on all of our achievements. We have worked hard to get to this point — stayed up late studying, driven far and wide for internships, and wrestled with difficult ideas. As Christians, though, we hold our achievements with an open hand, knowing that God is their author.

…As Christians, we are able to find fulfillment in the fact that we know Christ, who empowers us to do significant things for Him even in seemingly insignificant positions by the world’s standards. As we leave Bethel, we can serve God wherever He’s placed us: in an office job, working at a coffee shop, or cleaning bathrooms. We are freed from the burden of needing to appear to be something. We are found in Christ, so no matter where we find ourselves, God has work for us to do for His kingdom. It may be big. It may be small, but He is calling us to something, and His is the voice that we should listen to.

Click here for the full text.

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