College is the place where temptation is all around you and it’s a true eye opener for Christ followers. Since I’m in college I can personally tell you that the devil is everywhere and those who want to honor God are few and far between. I’m not going to sugar coat it, I’m just going to speak the truth. Knowing all these things though, whether you’re in college, used to be, or still aren’t there yet, I want you to know that it is possible to follow Jesus and honor God in college.
The 2 Types of People In College
There are two types of people in college, those that follow the crowd and those that don’t. Believe me when I say it, the people striving to honor God are the people who could care less about following the crowd. The only bad part about that is that most people want to take the easy way out. Take a look at Matthew 13 and you’ll see Jesus talk about the narrow gate. It’s the gate that few will walk through, the path that few will walk on and it’s the path that leads to the Lord. That’s one of the most important things you need to know about honoring God in college. You won’t be part of the crowd, therefore you will feel lonely, probably be made fun of, and may even second-guess yourself. I’m here to let you know that the narrow gate is worth it. If it were not worth it then Jesus wouldn’t have preached at the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 13 continually that few would walk that path. It will be tough and you will feel like giving up. Don’t lose the faith though. You must remember the God you serve, the life giving power he has, and the love he fills you with on a daily basis. He is good and he is for you. Romans 8:31 says, “If God is for us, who could stand against us?” This is the truth ladies and gentlemen. Whether it’s your so called “friends” hating on you, or your heart confusing itself over your feelings because you feel left out, just know that God is on your side.
Another focus is confidence in the Lord, which will bring confidence in you. It’s a rough world we live in and the roughness is visually evident in college. You will need God-given confidence to keep going through the tough trials that may be put in your way. Be ready for war. Cloudiness of the mind comes from Satan and his tricks. It is war. The devil will never stop tempting you as long as you are following Jesus Christ. This is why you must remain in faith and confidence in our God. Constant prayer and time with him is key as he gives you strength and prepares your heart for any obstacle along the way. Be confident in your walk with the Lord. Your hope is in him; therefore no circumstance can stand against your God. Walk in the peace and grace that he gives you. When you’re with friends, walk in godly confidence. Your faith is strong in him. He makes you stronger. Your God is bigger. Find joy in all these things and no matter the circumstance or comment that you receive, walk with confidence that you have in Jesus.
Complacency as a Christian rules this world. It seeps into our heart making us feel as if we’ve spent the quiet time we need with God, so we are free to walk away from him for a little while. Therefore, it feels like a schedule more than it does love for the Lord. We think we’ve done enough and shortly our faith in God begins to fall away. Beware of this in college. In order to honor him in the highest way, you must continually pursue his heart and goodness in love. You want to lift high the name of Jesus. You want people around you to know him because of what you’re doing. So be on the lookout for complacency in your heart and life. If you feel sluggish and tired, open his word. If you feel like you don’t need God right now and you’d rather go do something else, stop and pray. Let God speak to you and the Spirit fill you. I guarantee your heart will gradually change in that moment. I also believe that when complacency strikes, it is very important that friends are called. Call your friends that you know are full of Jesus and that would encourage you. Call an elder or mentor, this being someone that is more mature in their faith than you. This is incredibly beneficial when it comes to seeking God with constant pursuit. Falling into the nothingness of complacency can rip apart your faith and draw you further away from honoring God in college. Let me end it with this: complacency is at its strongest in college because you’re at such a changing point in your life that the devil will do anything to change your mind about spending more time with God.
Who Are You Hanging Around?
Who are your friends and whom do you constantly hang around? Who are those closest to you? These are important questions that you need to ask yourself while in college and also at any part of your life. 1 Corinthians 15:33 says, “Bad company corrupts good character.” I believe that Paul writes this to due to its utter importance. Continually putting yourself in situations with people who drag you down and further from God will only hurt you. Let me say, I believe in pursuing people and even friends who don’t know Jesus. That’s part of being a light. What I don’t believe in is making your closest and personal friends those who draw you away from God, don’t encourage you or show no signs of Jesus in their heart. So be careful reading this part. It’s amazing to be a light and to put yourself in certain situations where you can help a friend or complete stranger to be saved by the blood of Jesus, but your closest friends are a different story. If those closest to you aren’t helping your walk with Christ, then it’s going to be very hard to honor the Lord on campus. I believe that you need and that God will provide you with people who help you honor him. As you step out in faith on campus to bring him glory, your close “company” will encourage you and build you up in audacious faith. That’s vitally important. Pray that those that you walk closest with will also walk with Jesus.
This is no easy task. College and life in general is a battleground where evil is constantly trying to break your faith and cut you off from God. I’m here to tell you that by the blood of Jesus and faith in him, you can still glorify God in heaven and lead people on your campus to the hope he brings. Be strong. Be confident. Don’t falter in faith when times get tough. Pursue God and don’t become complacent. Look to see if those closest to you are helping you or hurting you. To everyone, know that our great God is with us and he is fighting for us. With his power and spirit in us, there is no circumstance that can keep us from glorifying his holy name.