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Shearouse urges students to use their talents
Emily Davis
Emily Davis, Effingham County High School, gave her testimony during baccelaurete. - photo by Photo by Sandi Van Orden

Effingham County School Superintendent Randy Shearouse told graduating seniors to use their talents as they move forward in their lives at the baccalaureate program Sunday at First Baptist Church of Rincon.

“I want to thank our pastors in our community for putting this together. I think it’s very important in our community,” Shearouse said. “It’s a way to really send off our seniors in the right way.”

Shearouse told the seniors when he graduated in 1984 — “sometimes maybe you don’t remember things exactly like they were,” he said — Apple came out with its first user-friendly computer.

“’Footloose’ was a popular movie at the time. You’ve probably watched it on the History Channel,” he said.

Shearouse said he didn’t have a plan when he graduated, and he didn’t even know what college he was going to attend until late in his senior year.

“I had no direction in my life,” he said.

Shearouse talked about the parable of the talents to the seniors.

“Can you think of someone who has been given the five talents, they’ve been given everything,” he said. “What I mean by everything is they’re smart, they’re good looking, they’re talented, they’re athletic. It seems like they have the world at their feet. You may know someone like that.”

Shearouse’s example of someone who he thinks received five talents is British soccer star David Beckham.

“The Lord probably expects a lot of him because he’s been given five talents,” he said.

“He’s good looking. At 16, he began playing soccer professionally. At 23, he signed a multi-million dollar contract with Adidas. How about this — he even married a Spice Girl. He’s pretty well got it made.

“He’s been given a lot in life, and a lot is expected of him, just like the servant who was given five talents,” Shearouse said.

Shearouse used basketball legend Michael Jordan as an example of someone given two talents.

“This may seem like a far stretch to some of you,” he said. “This amazed me. You may have heard this — he did not make his sophomore basketball team.”

Shearouse said Jordan could have quit playing and never tryout for a basketball team again.

“What if Michael Jordan had said, ‘I’ve only been dealt two talents, that’s not fair,’” he said.

Shearouse said the person he had, as an example of someone who was given one talent was Marla Runyan, an Olympic gold medal-winning runner who has been blind since she was 9.

“She has to be told when she wins a race,” he said. “I think we have to use whatever our talent is,” Shearouse said.

“Even if you’ve buried your talent so far, you can dig it up and use it. You can always start using your talent.

“Take whatever talent God has given you and use it,” he said. “You can pretty much do anything you want to do,” Shearouse said. “No one is going to hold you back.”