It's Our Time To Make Time

It's Our Time To Make Time

All you have to do is call and he will answer.

It’s so easy to get caught up in life. You get so busy with this, that, and the other and you just don’t know what to do. It seems like the natural thing to do when we get stressed is just push God away first and get to him when we can, which most of the time doesn’t even end up happening.

We let the less important "things" take over our lives instead of turning to the most important. Why is that though? Why do we push away the one who can help us the most, the one who knows us best and the one who is always there waiting for us to call for help?

Most of us have planners that keep up with our agenda day by day and even hour by hour, but I bet the majority of us don’t have a place in there that we are scheduled to devote our time to God, myself included. I still haven’t figured out why though.

Why do I feel the need to take on so many tasks, stressing myself out, trying to do it all alone, when He is right beside me the whole time? It's like deep down inside I know I should at least be starting and ending my day with Him, but I get so busy trying to figure out my life, rather than talking to him and just letting it all fall into place.

It seems like taking the time to pray and talk to God is kinda like making yourself go workout. You know you need to, but you try to find so many other things to do and resort back to that as your last option. In the end though, after you get done running or working out, you feel so much better and end up being glad you did it. Somedays I feel like that’s how it is making time for God.

All it takes is that one time to just do it and from then on out just make it a habit, but of course not because you have to...but because you want to. That's how our relationship should be with God. He should be our go-to guy, our best friend, and the person we tell everything to. After all, he does know us like no other.

While I am not by any means perfect, I have realized making time for Him will only benefit you in the long run. It will help you in so many ways, encourage you, and make you stronger as a person and as a Christian. The Lord is there and is waiting for you. All you have to do is call and he will answer.

Never forget:

God is never too busy to listen, so don’t be too busy to talk to him.

Don’t find time for Him every day, make time for him everyday.

If you make time with God your first priority, everything else will fall in place.

Cover Image Credit: Rachael Milner

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What It’s Like Being A Christian At A Liberal University

The constant struggle of trying to dissolve the clichés and long-held assumptions towards religion.

Upon attending a liberal university, I started to understand the mindset many people have towards religion. Simply because I hold religious beliefs, I am often considered illogical, overly-optimistic and ignorant.

I’ve sat through biology lectures that teach students that some people have a greater propensity to "fall for religion" simply because of their genetic composition. I’ve heard my philosophy professor emphasize how "spirit" does not exist and that humans are just breathing machines with no soul or purpose.

I’ve listened to my art teacher imply that only those who want to live in fantasy believe in a god because they’ll do anything to help them sleep at night.

Being a Christian at a liberal campus can be difficult because of how people view Christians and what they associate with religion.

It’s hard to explain that the beliefs I hold did not come from force-fed religious jargon in my childhood. It’s hard to share that I believe in a God who practices love, acceptance and second chances and who does not, in fact, hate the gays. It’s hard to stand for a belief that has been tainted by uptight religious undertones and obligatory customs.

The God I believe in went to the church and ridiculed the priests for their strict laws and fixed judgments. The gospel I live by depicts a man who befriended the criminals and prostitutes; who demanded mercy to be given to the adulterous when death was her sentence. The religion I follow is meant for the broken, the imperfect and the lost, in order to give them the chance to become people greater than themselves.

When you take away the voices that misrepresent Christianity, you will see that its final message is for everyone to demonstrate love, patience, and compassion in everything they do. Whether you choose to believe my story or not, it’s important to understand what Christianity stands for--the same goes for every viewpoint out there.

When attending a university with a diverse array of belief systems, it’s important to remain open-minded and strive to understand the intricacies of different cultures and contrasting morals. It’s imperative to look past the stereotypes and assumptions held toward certain beliefs. Only through taking time to understand one another and different perspectives, can harmonious living and discourse be obtained.

Being a Christian at a liberal university can be challenging at times, but when you meet people that are truly willing to listen and present their beliefs to you, it can fuel genuine and enlightening conversation.

Being on this campus has not only allowed me to collaborate with like-minded believers but also to engage in authentic relationships with people that hold different perspectives than my own. College is a time for learning and absorbing everything we can. It is within this community that we can do just that, simply by listening to one another.

Cover Image Credit: Priscilla Du Preez

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Thank You, InterVarsity, For Being The Best Part Of College Yet

"For where two or three are are gathered in my name, there am I among them" — Matthew 18:20

When I came to college, I knew that my faith was important to me, and I really wanted to be a part of a Christian organization. However, I had no idea how to find one or where to start. It turned out that instead of searching for and finding it on my own, InterVarsity, a large Christian organization at James Madison, found me. Here's how I became involved, and why it's the best thing that has happened to me since I've started my journey as a college student.

On my first week of college, (also known as FROG week) I heard through the grapevine about this weird event called the "watermelon bash." I wasn't sure if I wanted to go, as I hadn’t been off campus yet, and I didn’t know any upperclassmen that were involved in InterVarsity. At the last minute, some friends from my hall convinced me to tag along with them. So, I crammed into a car with a bunch of strangers (probably not the best judgment on my part, but it turned out okay) and off we went.

When we arrived, there was an overwhelming sea of people in the backyard of a house. It was a whirlwind; so many people introduced themselves to me, and I probably gave my phone number to at least 4 different small group leaders. And on top of that, it was dark outside, so I can hardly recognize most people that I met at that event. Nonetheless, I decided that Intervarsity, without a doubt, was where I wanted to be.

So, after that whirlwind event, I attended large group on a Friday night, where I fought for good seats and worshiped the Lord with my brand new lifelong friends. It was there that I signed up to be part of small group.

One day, I received a phone call from a number I had never seen before, and despite the fact that I almost never answer phone calls from people that aren't in my contacts, I decided to pick up.

"Hi Dakotah, this is BryAnna and Hannah, we're your small group leaders!"

And just like that, I became part of a group of girls that I now know will be lifelong friends, and for the next four years (and hopefully beyond our graduation day) we will spend time growing our friendships and supporting each others' relationships with Christ. What a great decision it was to answer that phone call.

Since then, our small group has experienced everything from tunneling, paint twister, and a weekend retreat with no phone service and lots of flannel, to receiving undeniable signs from God, and we have supported each other through everything that college life has thrown at us.

I am so thankful for InterVarsity, as it has given me amazing friends, beautiful memories, and the opportunity to take responsibility for my faith in God. I can't wait to see how God will continue to bless me through this organization during my time as a JMU student.

Cover Image Credit: Greyson Joralemon on unsplash

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