Dear child of God, searching for spiritual answers in this turbulent time of life, you are not alone.
Despite what I once thought, being a Christian in college is hard. Everything you thought you stood firm in is shaken to its core by young adults embittered by churches, families and other Christians that did not love them well. For every argument you present defending your faith, someone will have a rebuttal.
There is an enormous pressure to find your individuality in ways that are so much less than God's best for us. Sin, big and small, can feel detrimental to your standing with God. Shame engulfs you when your faith walk does not look as pristine and breathtaking as the other people in your Bible study group.
Even in all of this bitterness and doubt, I bring good news.
God is not surprised.
Before we're created, God knew us in full! (Jeremiah 1:5). He knew that you would be having this time of spiritual crisis. He knew that you would doubt His promises, His goodness, and even His existence! Doubt is an essential part of belief!
In 1 Peter 3:15, Peter says to be ready to give an answer for that which you believe. How can we get answers without first asking ourselves the questions? God does not ask us to have a completely blind faith but to experience His goodness and love for ourselves! Psalm 35:8 says, "Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him." Yes, experiencing God requires faith in the unseen, but with obedience to His commands comes revelation and a deeper knowledge of Christ. Unseen does not have to mean unknown!
There is a song I dearly love called "Pieces" by Amanda Cook. It says,
"You don't hide yourself to tease us."
These words are undeniably true! God is not interested in games, but in a heart that truly seeks out His presence! Psalm 14:2 says, "The Lord looks down from Heaven on all mankind to see if there are any who understand, any who seek Him." God desperately wants for us to search Him out! He is looking and waiting for us to come to Him in surrender to His goodness.
It is God's divine plan for us to know Him deeply here on Earth, and then fully in eternity with Him.
This desire God has for a relationship with us is the entire basis for His plan of salvation!
God sent a perfect person to die in our sorrows and regrets so that we didn't have to and then was raised to life so that we could be also. The requirement of perfection was obliterated when Christ stepped into our need and insufficiency. The only thing we must give in order to walk with God is our heart.
All God asks of us is surrender with the knowledge that no grace we receive is of our own accord. Titus 3:5 says, "He saved us, not by the righteous deeds we had done, but according to His mercy, through the washing of new birth and renewal by the Holy Spirit." We have done nothing to earn this gift of reconciliation, but have received it because of the good and loving nature of our God.
Remember this next time you feel the urge to throw in the towel.
Perfection is not the goal, a heart that seeks out God is.
Ask all the questions in the world, but seek the answers in prayer and Scripture. If you are not seeking God in this time, it's never too late to start. He is waiting in earnest for you to start a conversation. He is watching for your heart to turn to bask in His light of grace. IT will be worth it, I promise.