Dear College Student,
Welcome to the new season, Learner. Congratulations on taking a leap of faith and daring to further your education. There are some days where it will feel incredibly natural, there will be other days where concepts seem so foreign, they must originate from Mars. My experience is that higher education ranges somewhere in the middle of those two vast ideas.
While the function of higher education is fun and exciting (and again, an applause for pursuing knowledge), know now — learn early — it is not the end of the rope. This season is a peculiar one, in that you have amazing opportunities ahead of you. In this season you can be a blessing to a church who needs your energy and support, but also you’ve been placed inside classrooms, study groups, and dorm rooms, where it is likely that you are the only Apostolic, truth-wielding Christian in the room. Learner, understand that you’re in new soil, so soak up the Living Water, and breathe in the SON-shine; this is the season for growth.
Some real-talk: when I first moved to Tallahassee, these were ideas I struggled with. I made up in my mind that I was approaching the new year with a “yes” attitude, but was secretly harboring misconceptions that because I loved Children’s Ministry so deeply, it was the only ministry I had a gifting for. I saw the empty gaps where I could be of use, and approached them with hesitations, asking: “God, are you sure? I need you to carry me, I can’t do this on my own.” And He did carry me. He pushed me out of my comfort zone, and made me realize that when you love souls, Learner, it doesn’t really matter how you win them. What matters is that you start blooming where you’ve been planted. Stay soft, pliable, soak in the advice of your pastor and leadership. Consecrate yourself; go deeper, you’ve got nothing to lose and everything to gain. Your “school-church” needs YOU. You provide energy, support, and a Spiritual sensitivity that is unique; this is the opportunity to be a blessing.
Just as you bring a peculiar gift to your church, that gift is even more peculiar to your campus. Of every classroom you enter, every study group you attend, every suite-mate in your dorm, it is likely that you are the only one with the Holy Ghost, the truth, and the answers their souls are longing for. This is why our campus ministries are so important. While you’re being shaped and molded by the Holy Spirit, the enemy is making his best attempt at selling your classmates his earthly pleasures and providing empty promises. The fact that God has put you among people who, while consumed with enlightenment, entertain darkness, it is with increasing importance that your light shines. Show your friends, your class-mates, your professors, the love of God, Learner. It’s time to bear the fruits of the Spirit God has given you.
There will be days where the weight of it all may seem heavy, but know that His yoke is easy and burden is light (Matt. 11:30). You’re job is to sow seeds, He is the savior. And on the rough days, find comfort in that all things work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to His purpose (Rom. 8:28). Learner, you have a divine purpose. God wants to use you.
“But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light.” (1 Peter 2:9)
Blessings in your new adventure,
Not apart of a campus ministry yet? Find out if there is one at your school, or get information on how to start one at http://www.campusnow.org, a website loaded with resources at your fingertips!
Alexys Rea Griffin is a 22-year-old coffee connoisseur, bibliophile, Disney aficionado, and fresh-flower-lover. Seeking her English Literature degree from Florida State University, Alexys devotes her time to the Campus Apostolic Ministry at FSU as well as Kids Ministry at her local church. Do you do Instagram? ‘Cause so does she: @alexysasalways