The end of the spring semester in college ministry is kind of like trying to land a plane with no landing gear - you can get it to the ground, but it might not look pretty.
In college life, the amount of offerings increases sharply when Spring rolls around, but often students have an underdeveloped understanding of how to prioritize things that are important above those that are urgent (or even those things that are just fun). In addition to the usual school responsibilities, they have friends wanting to hang out, pool parties and lake days start to pop up, pickup football or volleyball games begin happening, and much more.
This doesn’t only happen in college. Springtime can be a hard time for all of us to focus. The weather gets nice, events and activities abound, and the usual work we have to do does not slow down. Because of this, we are faced with more decisions than usual about how we spend our time and what we prioritize.
I point this out as both a challenge and an encouragement.
The challenge is to re-frame: Re-frame your priorities to center around what is important, re-frame your time as a tool to be used by God, and re-frame all those events and activities into opportunities to live on God’s mission. A pool party, a volleyball game, an arts festival, or a movie with friends is just as ripe a mission field as anything - enter into your relationships and connections as a missionary!
The encouragement is this: When you accept that challenge, God works! Communicate with others where you have seen God at work in your life and be willing to share why your faith is important to you. If faith is relevant in your own life, then it is likely relevant in the lives of your friends too. Pray that God will open your eyes to opportunities to represent Him.
This spring, I hope and pray that you will finish strong. Instead of putting your blinders on to power through all of the busyness, keep your head on a swivel seeking places to join God in His mission.
I also ask that you encourage college students at church to do the same. This time of year, if you see a college student at a church service, know that they are doing something exceptional - their friends are sleeping in, hanging out, and then wondering why they got behind on their schoolwork, but the student you see here has chosen the better thing. Encourage them in that!
If you “adopted” a student last semester, please be sure to connect with them again, treat them to a meal, or at least check in. On April 26-28, our end-of-year retreat will be in Hugo, OK. Ask a student if he or she is going, encourage students to take part, and pray that the retreat will be a great way to finish the semester. As we come closer to the end of this school year, I hope we can finish strong!