Finding And Keeping Faith In College

Finding And Keeping Faith In College

Find a group of friends who encourage, and help you grow not only as a person but as a Christian.
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"You may go through seasons of sun wind and rain. You may tread the desert and in and out of pain. You may run through years wondering if you're good enough. But you will never run too far that you're outside of His love" -Morgan Harper-Nichols

Before I started college, I had a routine of just going to church on Sundays. I rarely read my bible, and I was not really pursuing a relationship with God. Thinking back on it, I never really did much to strengthen my relationship with Him. I knew that I believed in God, I just did not do much to live in that. It wasn't until college when I really grew in my relationship with God.

I remember moving to college, not really knowing if I was going to be able to keep my faith strong. You hear stories about college, that sometimes lead to doubt. Thankfully, I had a roommate who was a Christian and who was attending the church down the street from my university. One day I decided to go with her, just to check it out. It was different than what I was used to, but I liked it. I soon started to attend a college ministry, and I joined a small group. When I joined my small group, that is when I really saw my faith in God grow. Reading His word each week, and talking about it with other girls was the highlight of my weeks. I met one of my good friends in my small group. Long story short, she came into my dorm one night because I was having a hard time with something, and we started talking. We talked long into the night. I knew that God sent Olivia to my dorm that night. There is no other valid reason why she would have come. We barely knew each other. I believe that God places certain people in our lives for certain seasons that we walk through. I thanked God that night for putting her in my life. I still thank Him, even after knowing her for a year now. We started going to Ignite and Church together, and growing in our relationship with God together. It is so nice to have a friend to hold me accountable and to help me grow in relationship with God. We grew as friends through the months, and she was and is the one person I still turn to when I am struggling with anything.

I am currently a sophomore, and I have grown so much closer to God in this year. I have realized how important it is to have a relationship with God. One thing that has really helped my relationship with God was going to fall retreat and being surrounded by other believers. I went to the beach one weekend with my college ministry and a group of my friends. It was a hard weekend, but it was then when I really felt closest to God. I could feel His presence in my life during that weekend, and ever since, I have felt so much peace in my day to day life. I have learned that it isn't impossible to keep a strong faith in college. There will be days where it is hard, but it is always possible. I have faced a lot of hardship keeping my relationship with God strong this semester. I love being a part of a community group because being able to openly talk about Jesus, life, and struggles is really important. Having people there to keep me accountable helps abundantly.

I also recently just became a part of Delight ministries, which is a woman's ministry. I had heard a lot about it before I decided to go to a meeting. I was a little nervous to start going but I am so glad I did. One of my friends invited my roommate and I. We went on a random Wednesday evening, and I was blown away. I felt like God had placed me there for a reason. The evening that we went they were talking about grief, and how to find God in the midst of it. It was everything that I needed to hear. Right now I am facing a lot of pain from grief because of the holidays coming up. I gained such a great friend from this group, as well. I heard her story on the night that we went, and it was so inspiring. I remembering meeting up with her for coffee a few days later and sharing a little bit of my story with her. Being able to have friends who understand what I am going through is a blessing. It is amazing to be able to keep growing in faith alongside my roommate and new friends. I have been able to find the support I need to get through this month, in this group of ladies.

Find a group of friends who encourage, and help you grow not only as a person but as a Christian.

Cover Image Credit: Taylor Markee

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12 Bible Verses For Faith In Hard Times

Remind yourself that God is always with you.
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Lately, I have felt lost at what God wants for my life. Ever since I've come back to UWG everything has been horrible. It seems that I can't catch a break. I'm trying my best to focus on school, work, and extracurricular activities. But it's hard when I'm having issues with my apartment/roommates and knowing my family back home is struggling and needs many prayers. All, I keep thinking is maybe Carrollton isn't where I belong anymore. I've asked God if He can guide me in the right direction. Below, I have found Bible verses that have helped get me through these rough, past couple of weeks.

1. Isaiah 43:2

"When you go through deep waters, I will be with you."

2. Psalm 37:5

"Commit your way to the Lord. Trust in Him, and He will act."

3. Romans 8:18

"The pain that you've been feeling, can't compare to the joy that's coming."

4. Proverbs 31:25

"She is clothed in strength, and dignity, and she laughs without fear of the future."

5. Joshua 1:9

"Be bold. Be brave. Be courageous."

6. Ecclesiastes 3:1

"There is a time for everything and a reason for every activity under the heavens."

7. Isaiah 41:10

"Don't be afraid, for I am with you. Don't be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand."

8. Isaiah 66:9

"I will not cause pain without allowing something new to be born, says the Lord."

9. Psalm 91:4

"He will cover you with His feathers, and under His wings, you will find refuge; His faithfulness will be your shield and rampart."

10. Psalm 62:1-2

"My soul finds rest in God alone, my salvation comes from Him, He alone is my rock and my salvation."

11. Philippians 4:13

"I can do everything through Christ who gives me strength."

12. Jeremiah 29:11

"For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."

Cover Image Credit: pixabay.com

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You May Be In A Rush, But God Isn't

It's okay to be still.

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In the world we live in today it seems like being still isn't a thing. Everyone is always on go with slam packed schedules and planners. You go from one thing to the next all day, all week even with little to no break in between all the chaos. We live in a time where if your life isn't like this if you're not constantly doing something from sun up to sun down then you're lazy, unambitious, and not going to make anything of yourself. Okay, I could be slightly over-exaggerating, but people seriously look down on others when they don't fit into the hustle and bustle scheme of life.

It might seem like you always need to be on the go and getting from one thing to the next, but it's okay to take breaks, it's okay to take time to be still. In fact, many times in the Bible God tells us, "be still." In Psalm 46:10 specifically, we're told that God says this, "Be still, and know that I am God." This is short and sweet, but it is a very powerful command that requires trust and a heart for the Lord.

It is so easy to caught up in family and home life situations and financial situations and work or school situations that can cause an unbelievable amount of stress. When you're feeling stressed, exhausted and overworked that's the perfect time for you to be still. Sit in God's presence and remember who He says He is and know that He is exactly that. Bring all that stress and that exhaustion and that worry and frustration and lay it all down in front of Him and be still. Let him carry your burdens like He says He will do for you, his child. It takes trust to just stop and abandon the norm of being a go-getter but the peace of mind and heart that only the Lord can provide is unlike anything in this world and entirely worth it.

When you are always on the go it's so easy to get in a rush because you become so eager to check everything off of your to-do list. Now, I know you just HAVE to get everything done. Don't rush though. Sometimes being still looks like just taking a step back and being completely present in your current moment. Be fully there. Don't constantly be thinking about what's next or what you've missed already. Be still and know that God has gone before you in each and every day. Be still and know that God will fulfill all of his promises to you, even if your to-do list doesn't get completed. Be still and know that there is nothing you can do to sabotage the plan He has set for you.

It's okay to be a busy person. It's okay to get everything on your long to-do list done. It's okay to have late nights and early mornings. It is. But, don't let that consume you. Don't let that be who you are. Be still in God's presence every day, this is our temporary home after all our eternal home is with Him. So trust His plan for you and his timing, know who He says He is, and trust that He will always be that.

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