The time is finally here. You've attended orientation and received your list of classes for a major you're not even too sure of. You've gone to Line Camp and screamed "sic 'em" too many times to count. You've shoved clothes you already know you'll probably never wear into a suitcase and packed cute string lights you saw on Pinterest. You've checked off everything on your list, and that means it's time to move to Baylor University for your freshman year.
But suddenly, you're wondering if you should have just gone to the state university like your best friend since middle school. You scroll through Instagram, wondering if your orientation and Line Camp buddies will pretend like they don't know you exist once you officially step foot on campus for classes. All at once, you're terrified that your randomly assigned roommate will end up being one of the thousands of roommate horror stories that you've read online. I already know what you're thinking, because two years ago, I had all of these scary thoughts before move-in day, as well.
So for every 18-year-old Baylor bear who's driving thousands of miles away or even just a few blocks down the road to attend this beautiful school for their first year, here's a prayer for you:
Heavenly Father, I pray for peace over the Baylor class of 2022. I wish that despite their countless worries, they'll enter the hall of their dorm and feel the warmth of home rush over them from the top of their head to the tips of their toes. I pray that their Community Leader will make them feel the safety that they're missing from being so far away from their parents for the first time. Oh, God, please let another freshman who lives just a few doors down the hall from them quickly become the lifelong best friend that they can't live without.
I pray that each member of the class of 2022 stays up late every night... but not due to stress or anxiety. Let them stay awake because their sides are burning from the laughter of their roommates telling jokes past midnight. Allow them to feel vulnerable enough to tell their darkest secrets to someone they just met, because they know in their heart that their new pals are trustworthy. God, give each freshman the strength to do something daring, like meet someone new, try out for a sport, join a new church, or simply be a friend to someone in need.
Lord, I pray that this new class of Baylor bears will truly achieve academic success. Let them change their major once or twice or even ten times, as long as they discover the path that You have destined them to have. Allow them to thrive in the career path You have chosen for them, and give them comfort that no matter what grade BearWeb reads, they are beautifully and wonderfully made in Your image. Wrap Your arms around them and remind them that it is OK that they are not perfect, but You will always love them through the good times and bad. I pray that the class of 2022 will find their purpose and that every choice they make will be for the honor and glory of Jesus.
Heavenly Father, I pray that these freshmen will LOVE Baylor. I hope that they will feel the thrill of wearing that striking and blinding gold jersey on game days and feel powerful and unstoppable while running the Line. God, please let them feel comfortable raising their hand in class because they know deep down that the professors here will do anything for them to succeed. I pray that in nine months, when they're packing up the hundreds of clothes that they never wore, that they'll be in tears because they can't imagine not sleeping in their dorm room over the summer. I want them to throw their arms around their roommates and hall-mates and never want to let go, because nothing will ever be the same again without being around them 24/7. Lord, I pray that they will savor every second of living and breathing at Baylor as a young and vibrant freshman, because it truly is the best year of their lives.
This is my prayer for the class of 2022. God, I know there will be hard times. There's always going to be that incredibly difficult exam or a moment where a roommate snores too loudly or a time where a Community Leader will never replace Mom or Dad. But Heavenly Father, let this be a new and exciting chapter in their life where blessings trump the difficult moments. Let them turn to their friends or upperclassmen like me who are willing to help them every step of the way. Oh God, most importantly, let them turn to YOU when they need help.
Lord, I know you will bless these freshmen with all of the things that I prayed for because YOU blessed ME with every single wish I just listed way back when I was a freshman. Thank you for granting me with two absolutely wonderful, life-changing, hilarious, memorable, eye-opening, and simply inexplicable years of perfect memories at Baylor thus far, and THANK YOU for allowing us to attend a Christian university where You are appreciated and Your grace is always welcomed. Please open the eyes of the freshmen and grant them the ability to see that being a Baylor bear is more than wearing green and gold: it's about finally becoming the person they are meant to be.
So, the time is finally here. To the class of 2022, as you walk through the halls of your dorm for the first time and hang up your Pinterest string lights, don't worry. I'm praying for you every step of the way.
"Don't worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank Him for all He has done." — Philippians 4:6
"For I know the plans I have for you," says the LORD. "They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope" — Jeremiah 29:11
"This is my command — be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the LORD your God is with you wherever you go." — Joshua 1:9