“Since you have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator” Colossians 3:9-10.
God calls us all to be made new daily and this year Corban is taking a deeper look into what that means. Being made new for a mom could be more free time since her five year old started kindergarten, for a businessman it may be a day of rest during a business trip, for a professor it could be a fresh semester with all new students, or for a senior it could be recognizing they’re being made new for the days after they receive their degree. But for a freshman, being made new is wide-eyed, deer in the headlights, “God please don’t let me crash and burn” anxiety.
We freshmen question everything. Should I lock my room when I leave? Will my roommates be okay with the decorations I brought? Do my professors really expect me to read fifty pages? Do I really have to buy a $150 textbook? How do I make new friends? What if my roommates and I don’t get along? What if I sleep through a class or miss an assignment?
All these questions lead up to one simple fact…we have no idea what we’re doing. It’s a new school, new place to live, new responsibilities and for some, a new state. How do we cope? Where do we even begin our new lives as college students, just beginning to learn how to be an adult?
The best answer anyone can give, and one of the things Corban excels at teaching, is turning our gazes to Christ. Due to the fact that we are freshman, we are typically placed in some sort of basic Bible or Theology class. While some may say this is stupid or unfair, I’ve found, in my short college experience, that it is actually quite beneficial.
These classes give us something far more important to focus on other than our own problems, living a Christ-centered, focused life. Then there’s Chapel, where we set aside an hour every couple of days to put away our laptops and notebooks and return our gaze to Him in worship and fellowship. There’s a personal peace that comes with shifting our focus and trusting that God will take care of and guide us.
Still, for young Christians this can be easier said than done. We say we’re trusting in God but we’re still agonizing over three-to-four hours of homework. My dad has this mantra when it comes to my mom and I getting overwhelmed by the number of tasks we need to get done by a certain day and time: “Take one thing at a time”. This perspective often allows for making lists and schedules that allow us to focus on each assignment fully rather than freaking out over the next three.
This thought process can also be useful in our growing relationship with Christ. While we may be assigned to read the entire book of Genesis or Romans in two days, we should focus on one aspect that God is putting on our hearts. In my few years of faith, I’ve found that as time goes by God shows me different sides of Him and allows me to wrap my head around seeing Him as my Lord, my Father, my Redeemer, and, most recently, my most constant Friend. Relationships are a time invested step-by-step process and with God it is no different.
Often for us freshmen, we get intimidated by the juniors and seniors who seem like such Godly people of Faith, so on fire for God, that we may feel inadequate. But then we realize, they’ve been here longer. They’ve had exposure to the depth of theology and missions.
We haven’t yet. But we will. There’s a moment of realization where it can hits us that we have four years to experience Christ, to get a hang of this college thing and to find our niche in the community of Corban.
We’ve just begun the second semester of our freshmen year. We’re beginning to solidify our groups of friends. We’re starting to understand what professors expect from us. We’re truly beginning to learn who God is and what He is about. We’re still asking questions but now they’re out loud, to each other, our professors, or our RA’s. We have the opportunity to grow in confidence, grow in comfort, and, above all, grow in Christ.