High School Valedictorian Shares the Gospel during Graduation Speech

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The valedictorian of a high school in South Carolina shared the gospel message during her graduation speech, speaking about how God carried her through the loss of her mother.

Lydia Owens, the valedictorian of Woodmont High School in Piedmont, South Carolina, said that two years ago, her mother died, and she soon realized that her identity could not be placed in performance or achievements, reports.

“You are so much more than how well you perform,” she said.

“If you place your identity in what you accomplish, and you believe you are only good enough if you succeed, what happens when you fail?” Owens added. “What happens when you don’t have a lot of money or you don’t have a lot of friends?

“Placing your identity in the things of this world will disappoint you, because they are only temporary.”

The crowd applauded throughout her speech.

“When everything else in my life felt uncertain the only person that I could depend on to stay the same was Jesus,” she said.

“My perspective of success drastically changed, because I realized the many years I spent placing my worth in my academics meant absolutely nothing in eternity.”

Owens is the daughter of First Baptist Simpsonville executive pastor Brian Owens.

“Brian Owens is one of my best friends in life, and truly a hero of a dad,” First Baptist Simpsonville Lead Pastor Wayne Bray wrote on Twitter. “So I am proud of Lydia as her Pastor, but maybe even more so as a friend to her dad. She lives her faith and is willing to shout it for the whole world to hear. Yes, tragedy struck Lydia’s life, and its impact was great. But she is a living example that God’s grace is greater!”

Owens reminded her classmates that God loves and values them all.

“No matter what your future holds, please remember that life is so much more than how successful you are. Even if you accomplish all of your dreams or none of them at all, you are still valuable and still good enough, because you are made in the image of God,” Owens said.

“You don’t have to worry about whether or not you’ll be successful because God promises that his grace is sufficient for us and his power is made perfect in our weakness.”

Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/Jupiter Images

Amanda Casanova is a writer living in Dallas, Texas. She has covered news for since 2014. She has also contributed to The Houston Chronicle, U.S. News and World Report and She blogs at The Migraine Runner.

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