• Is This the Right Address?



By Barry Cameron
May 18, 2018

The class of 2018 has now heard advice from an eclectic group of political, cultural and spiritual icons, gurus and advisors at this year’s commencement programs and there are more to come.

CNN anchor and journalist, Jake Tapper, spoke to graduates at the University of Massachusetts and spoke of the nation’s social climate, citing a country defined by negative language, vicious attacks and rabid falsehoods.

Josh Groban spoke to the graduates at High Point University and concluded his speech with a song written by Stephen Sondheim.

Chadwick Boseman (Black Panther), told grads at Howard University, “I don’t know what your future is, but if you are willing to take the harder way, the more complicated one, the one with more failures than successes, the one that’s ultimately proven to have more victory, more glory, then you will not regret it.”

Oprah Winfrey spoke to about 900 graduates at the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism. Here are a few of the gems she shared: “Eat a good breakfast, pay your bills, recycle, make your bed, aim high, say thank you, and put your phone away at the dinner table.”

Michael Keaton spoke to grads at Kent State University and ended his by saying, “I want to leave you with two words … I’m Batman.”

In 2005, Dennis Leary spoke at Emerson College and shared the shortest commencement speech ever, “I didn’t prepare a bunch of stuff to say to you guys because I know you want to get out of here and get drunk.” Probably the wrong speaker and definitely the wrong address, wouldn’t you agree?

What would you say to graduates if you were asked to address them?

Here are a few things every graduate needs to hear every year:

The world doesn’t owe you anything. Start with the premise you are the debtor and life will instantly improve.

If you stop to smell the roses, pull a few weeds while you’re down there. You’ll help make the world a better place.

The most important words you will ever need to know are: “Thank you,” “I’m sorry,” and “I don’t know.”

Remember faith, family and friends are always more important than fun, fame and fortune. If you mess up here, you’ll really mess up.

Be on time for work and give it everything you’ve got every day. You’ll be able to work there as long as you want and enjoy the rewards sluggards only dream about.

What would you say to graduates if you were asked to address them?

When you work hard at everything you do, nothing you do will ever seem like hard work.

Success in any endeavor is as simple as serving the needs of others.

Your attitude will always be more important than your accomplishments.

No matter what you’ve been told, what happens in Vegas doesn’t stay in Vegas — it follows you your whole life.

Conduct carries consequences. So be a person of character and integrity.

Don’t just seize the day. Seize your whole life by living for Jesus Christ.

Slogans won’t help you as much as convictions will.

Most important of all, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength … and love your neighbor as yourself” (Mark 12:30-31).

Kinda’ covers it all, doesn’t it?

And it didn’t take two boring hours to say it … or to hear it.

© 2018. Barry L. Cameron


Senior Pastor

Barry Cameron is a devoted father and husband, bestselling author, dynamic communicator, and Senior Pastor of Crossroads Christian Church. Crossroads has a gorgeous, 150-acre campus in Grand Prairie, Texas. More than 8000 people call Crossroads their church home. Barry’s latest book, The Road to Financial Freedom, came out in the fall of 2020 and is available on Amazon. It’s another game changer for individuals and families who want to fix their finances once and for all.

Barry and his wife, Janis, have three children: Katie, Matt and Kelli. A daughter-in-law, Lindley and a son-in law, Johnny. They also have two grandsons, Will and Levi. Their family has been completely debt free since November 15, 2001.

Crossroads Christian Church has been debt free since November 9, 2008.