Locke shared his belief that one of the ways in which God shows his love is through the giving of gifts. Furthermore, he argued that God is offering such a gift to students in this very moment. Like students during World War II, Locke said, the college students of today have been given the chance to be brave.
“It’s not what we do that makes us brave,” Locke said. “It’s the world in which we do it.”
Years ago, Locke was diagnosed with cancer. The recovery process involved surgeries, radiation, and chemotherapy treatments that he described as "brutal." Throughout the experience, Locke continued to teach at UMHB.
“All I did was go to work every day, same as I always do,” Locke said, “but in doing this simple, everyday work, the Lord gave me an opportunity to be brave, not because I did anything special, but because I did something ordinary under extraordinary pressures.”
Later a colleague shared with Locke that, without knowing it, his perseverance, amid terrible conditions, had been a real encouragement and inspiration to the people around him.
Locke read from Acts 4. In the passage Peter and John are put in jail and then questioned before the court. Peter, in this stressful environment, offers testimony about Jesus.
“Peter and John’s bravery, doing something ordinary in an extraordinary circumstance, revealed the power of God,” Locke said.
“The Lord has given you that chance to be brave,” Locke said. “You can stand up, by the power of Jesus, and say ‘Listen, Coronavirus, you are not going to stop us from going to college. You are not going to stop us from learning and preparing. You are not going to stop us from caring for one another. You are not going to stop us from changing the world. You are not going to stop us from living life.”