Governor Glenn Youngkin spoke at a Friday morning convocation at Liberty University. He told those in attendance that public service is a calling from God, and touched on policy issues including Ukraine, law enforcement, discussions of race in schools, and polarized two-party politics.
“It’s not an ‘or’ moment, it’s an ‘and’ moment” – Glenn Youngkin
“It’s not an ‘or’ moment, it’s an ‘and’ moment. Today in America there are voices on the far left that so want to silence the voice on the right. They want to cancel conservative speakers on campuses. They want to silence voices who disagree with them,” he said.
Full speech of Glenn Youngkin
“The students and graduates of Liberty University are indeed a force for good,” Youngkin said.
“Christians need to serve on the front lines, whether it’s in a remote village on the other side of the globe or in our backyard. And, for certain, in places of power, where policy will determine whether our values are legislated or negated. Let me be clear, someone’s values will be legislated,” he said.
This week, Youngkin recalled legislators for a General Assembly session to pass the budget, beginning in April. Negotiations over the budget and Youngkin’s tax relief are ongoing, and the governor has been pitching his priorities to Virginians. The House budget supports Youngkin’s policies, but the Senate’s budget is focused more on one-time spending with concerns over cutting Virginia’s long-term revenue stream.
In a discussion with Dean Robert Hurt, Youngkin said, “In that special session, the number one objective is to deliver a budget. And in that budget, I firmly believe we have a unique opportunity and that is to reduce taxes on Virginians. It’s gotten so expensive here.”
He cited the rising cost of living. He said, “And yet we have a record surplus in Virginia. A record surplus. In fact, we’re expecting $14 billion more in government receipts than what was expected. $14 billion. So there is a great chance for us to cut taxes and return $9 billion of that to Virginians and invest some in mental health, law enforcement, and behavioural health, we can do both.” “Let me be clear, not because we won, no, not because we won, but because Christ our Lord and saviour is our rock, he is our rock,” Youngkin said. “He doesn’t say come with me because you’ll win he says come with me because I love you. ”
He highlighted how his sense of calling to run for governor came through prayer. While running for governor, he said he prayed for God’s help every day, and he still does.
He also said “What an honour to speak, not just at Liberty University but at Liberty University Convocation,” Youngkin told the arena full of about 10,000 students. “This is special. I hope all of you understand how special this is to come together — in faith — at your university, to share in the brotherhood of Christ together. This is special.”
His message recounted his journey to becoming governor, the importance of his prayer life, the many issues that are causing divisiveness in our country today and how to love without compromising convictions. Now, just over two months into his role as Virginia’s 74th governor, he said the journey has been “a test of perseverance, an eye-opening insight into the soul of Virginia, the most amazing job interview you could possibly imagine.”
“Above and beyond all those things that are quite earthly, this campaign in the first 10 weeks of serving Virginians has done one most important thing: It has been an absolute affirmation of my faith,” he said.
While many politicians run for election because people around them encourage it, Youngkin said his campaign began in his prayer closet. He sensed the Lord calling him to consider running for governor, and he received encouragement from his wife to follow that leading.
“I’ve never believed that prayer is about moving God to where I am but a process of God moving us to where He is,” he said. Throughout this time, Psalm 121, “Our help comes from the Lord” kept coming to mind.
“I asked Him every day for help, and I continue to ask Him every day for help,” he said. He reminded Liberty’s student body to always rely on the Lord’s leading.
“I have a message of infinite hope in that your life is worth an infinite amount to Him,” he said. “So I’ll ask you, where does your help come from? And I’ll give you the answer: it comes from the Lord.”.
While hitting on topics such as parents’ rights in their children’s education and a healthy approach to race relations that don’t leave certain groups bearing the sins of the past, Youngkin said that while being loving Christians, we must share our political arguments well.
“It’s at this divisive time in history that we must always remember that it’s not the volume of your voice but the strength of your argument that matters.”
“Christians need to serve on the front lines”
He pointed out that Liberty graduates are currently holding office, working in state government, and even working alongside him on his staff.
“The reputation and impact of Liberty University extend far beyond the Blue Ridge Mountains,” he said. He told the students that whatever field they enter, they can be “the greatest ambassadors around the world for Liberty” and that he’s confident Liberty graduates are making a significant impact in their communities. Campus Pastor Jonathan Falwell prayed over Youngkin, asking the Lord to protect him and use him for the Kingdom wherever he goes while standing for truth.
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