College is tough!
It seems that so many people love the college life, they make new friends, and enjoy many new adventures. Some would refer to this season as “the best time of my life.”
But what about the far and few who struggle with the college life? Who find it hard to make friends? Who think it is the worst time of their life?
This is me.
First let me start with, I am incredibly thankful that I am able to receive an education post high school. I realize how privileged I am to be able to do this. For this, I am eternally grateful to God for blessing me in this manner.
Put aside the education aspect of college though. Let me share my struggles with you from the past two years to hopefully show you that there are other people whom share in the same struggles as you do and that there is a God who sees us through.
How do you make friends when you are in a school that you did not grow up in, that has thousands upon thousands of student, and you cannot seem to connect with just one person?
Well, I went through a season of loneliness at college. I couldn’t understand why and it left me feeling sad, dull, like I was sitting in a room with gray walls, and lots of tears. Many pity parties were had. (Wrong, I know.) Well, at some point and time God said “get a grip!” He wanted that time alone with me and I was so focused on myself and not having anyone to chat with or hang out with that I was missing time with my savior who wants my attention more than anyone else could ever want me. When I realized this, it made me realize how special I am to my Father in Heaven. He desires to draw near to each of His children and all it takes is for us to focus on Him, commune with Him, and worship Him. I was so wrapped up in my own little world that I never heard His knock on my heart, so he found way to intervene and “isolated” me just so that I may be with Him and grow closer with Him. Oh how grateful I am that he decided to do so. Don’t get me wrong it is still a huge struggle to be lonely in a sea of students who do not ever look lonely, but I bet if we take a closer look there are other lonely students, others who are sharing the same struggles we do. So, struggling college girl, I encourage you to embrace the empty room, quiet of the day and to commune with Jesus. Allow Him to fill that void in your heart. I believe you will find yourself growing more and more joyful as the time passes by.
Ecclesiastes 3:1-10 says “For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven: a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted; a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing..”
So, what about the sour attitude that comes with our hate for the college life? It’s tough to keep a good attitude when the weight of the world seems to be coming down on your shoulders, when you have no friends to vent too, when balancing school, work, and relationships seem to be too much. God says “Well how about a reality check (insert your own name here).” Hasn’t God already blessed us with so much? I am in good health, I have a good education I am working on, I have a job, I have a wonderful fiance, I have the best family, the best best friend, and the one and only God, our father, is their for me at all times. What’s with the sour attitude?? Who cares that so much is falling down on me all at one time. I need to remember that my faith needs to be greater than my fears. I need to remember to thank God for providing for the unseen. I was recently at a church at WCU called The Bridge Church. (HIGHLY recommend checking it out!!) The pastor in his sermon spoke on “What is your attitude like?” In all that I do I should have a good attitude for my God. I should do all things to please Him. A sour attitude will not please Him nor myself because I am not allowing myself to feel joy with such an attitude. Oh how great that reminder was. Thank you Jesus for reminding us to choose joy, to choose faith over fear, to choose to shine your light each and every day through our actions because you gave your all so that we may live the lives we live. So, to that college girl who hates college, YES, college is hard, but we have a God who is saying keep on, persevere through because their is a reward at the end of the dark tunnel. Allow God to use you in your college life. Be a light to those around you. This college path is just where God needs you to be in this time of your life. It’s preparing you for the next stage of your life..
Colossians 3:17 says “And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”
Here’s my last spill on not being content in the college world. Perspective. It is all about perspective. My most recent struggle was I was ready to be done with college. I was ready to be graduated, creating a home with the man whom I am going to marry soon (YAY!!!), I was ready to become a mom after we got married, I no longer cared about school. Like how do I jump from studying and working so hard to make straight A’s to not caring and failing an exam all in a semester?? (Yes, that exam was the slap in the face that woke me back to reality.) My boyfriend (well, he’s my fiance but that’s such a weird word..i think boyfriend sounds more.. well ya get it.) spoke some very powerful words of truth into my life that I would like to share with every struggling girl out there. He said “Hannah you have lost where you are right now. You need to get your viewpoint back into perspective. God has you where you are for a reason. You are blessed to be able to go to college, and this is where God wants you. Yes, maybe your dream of being a stay at home mom will come true later on, but right now we have to finish school. There is no point of quitting school when we are not even getting married for another year. You are not going to quit school because I am behind you in this and God has called you to this. Remember why you are here? You have a dream to help those in need and this degree will help you get to these children you yearn to help. Babe, keep your perspective in line. You’ve lost your perspective and you need to get it back. I am here for you always, but I think you need to talk to Jesus right now and ask him to remind you of where you are and why you are here.” Yes, our chat went on after that, but that’s the highlights. It’s probably not his exact words, but it’s pretty dang close. So, how big of a smack in the face is this??? Like thanks for the wake up call babe. But, seriously those words are so strong yet so full of truth, I encourage any girl struggling in college for whatever reasons to regain perspective. Don’t lose it. Take those wise words Nathan spoke into my life, adjust them a little if needed, and speak them into your own life.
God has you where you are for a reason. He will never leave you nor forsake you. He is a good God. He is the best father. He had our lives planned before we were even thought of here on Earth. Regain perspective, live intentionally, love crazily, never give up, keep climbing the ladder of faith, and eventually you can say you made it! I am a blessed college student, thank you Jesus!
When we walk across that stage to receive our diploma we will be able to say this prayer and oh how great of an accomplishment will that be!
“Dear God, I made it through the challenge of college! I am prepared for the next life challenge you have to give me. I pray that I am able to be an encourager to those around me. I pray that you help me to shine your light in my words and actions. Help me to become bold, to use my testimony for your glory, and to reach the unreached. Help me plant seeds and water seeds. Show me where to go next Lord, I am ready!”
Photocredit: Adam Mullins Photography