At Criswell College’s annual spring commencement exercises May 13, Dr. Dante Wright urged the 47 college and master’s graduates not to be “incognito” as they move into their next season of life, but to make clear to those around them that they belong to Christ. A Criswell alum and member of the school’s Board of Trustees, Wright serves as the pastor of Sweet Home Baptist Church in Round Rock.
Wright congratulated the graduates on their academic achievement, challenging them to “make a difference in the world for the cause of Christ.” Preaching from Matthew 5:13-16, he reminded the graduates that, “If you don’t know your purpose when you walk out of this place today: you are called by God to be salt and light to this dark and decaying world.
“Don’t be afraid to tell someone that you love God. They may say you’re different or that you act different,” Wright said. “You just tell them you’re just acting the way God has created us to act.”
Wright posed the question, “Once you graduate, then what?” He warned the graduates not to fall into the traps of procrastination or indecision, noting that “we have no time to contemplate indecision because Jesus has already told us what our call and role is.”
Reflecting on his own time at Criswell, Wright also advised those attending to beware of the difference between memorizing Scripture and internalizing it.
“As a Criswell student, I memorized the Sermon on the Mount,” Wright said. “But there’s a difference between memorizing and internalizing. Once I received the grade, it was almost like the Sermon on the Mount was no longer in me. And yet when I began to move into the real world, I missed out on some of its great biblical truths and principles because I had been so busy trying to memorize for a grade.”
In conclusion, Wright urged Criswell graduates to engage with issues such as marriage, racial reconciliation, and abortion, reminding them that wherever they go and whatever they do, they will always have the tools they received at Criswell to be salt and light in the world.
Among those commissioned for ministry at commencement was Bryan LeCompte, Outstanding Graduate and winner of the W.A. Criswell Honors Award. LeCompte urged his fellow graduates to appreciate the legacy of those who have gone before and enabled them to receive the unique education afforded them at Criswell as they fulfill their mission moving forward.
“You were equipped here at this college for one central purpose: to love the church and to serve her with your newly acquired skills, following the example of Christ’s service to her,” LeCompte said. “Do not assume that you will change the culture for Christ divorced from His bride.”