If you're about to come to college, this is for you.
Before college, my life was fairly consistent. I lived in the same house for 18 years, went to school with the same friends, wore the same uniform. My parents and I ate at the same restaurants; I worked the same jobs; my friends and I did the same things. It was all constant; it was all a little boring, but it was what I called my normal.
Then, after 18 blissful years of consistency, I went to college and I learned a thing or two about change.
From the second I loaded up my car and made my way to Clinton for move-in-day, change started rushing towards me like a train. That was three years ago, and let me tell ya, change hasn't slowed down one bit. But, thankfully, since then I've learned how to approach and live in the midst of change a lot better than I used to.
Today, I could say a lot about change. I could quote Ecclesiastes 3 and tell you more stories from my experiences with change. I could list the "what if's" of what'll happen if you run from it. I could produce the easy list blog. But I won't do any of that, because all of you are different.
In a few weeks, you'll load your cars just like I did all those summers ago, and there's a big chance that you'll feel the rush of change upon you, too. It'll be overwhelming at first, and maybe even a little hard, but it's so important that you embrace it. Every person will take it differently; you and your best friend and your roommate and your classmate will all experience the first few weeks of school in your own way. And here's my advise to all of you: pray.
If you find yourself with tears in your eyes when your parents tell you that first goodbye-- pray.
If the caf is too big and the other students are too unfamiliar-- pray.
If on the first day of class you have to ask a janitor where your classroom is-- pray.
If you're exhausted and your dorm doesn't feel like home yet-- pray.
If you realize you left (insert sentimental object here) at home-- pray.
If it takes you a while to find a home church-- pray.
If you don't get along with your roommate-- pray.
If you're late to class on the first, second, or tenth day-- pray.
If you thought the adjustment to college would be easy and it isn't-- pray.
We have a God that is crazy about you (and your best friend and your roommate and your classmates). He loves to hear from you, to hear what is on your heart (even though He already knows), and He wants the front row seat in this new season. The same God that called you to school wants to be involved when you get there. He is present in the change. He is so real, so involved, and so excited to walk through all these changes with you.
My first few weeks at school were hard. It was hard to feel secure is newness and unfamiliarity and Mississippi. But, guess what, they got better. I realized that change was inevitable. I let it be hard and I asked God to show me Himself in all of it-- and He did. He always shows up. He is always constant, even when everything else around us is changing.
As you approach this new season, it is my prayer that the Truth of who our God is becomes concrete in your heart. Don't try to do college without Him.
And yes, I did have to ask a janitor where my class was on my first day. He was nice.