“Not Being able to fully understand God is frustrating, but it is ridiculous for us to think we have the right to limit God to something we are capable of comprehending.” – Francis Chan
I’ve struggled with my faith ever since I started college three years ago. God has always been real for me. I’ve seen his presence in every aspect of my life but when I left home and started college I didn’t realize how intentional my faith had to be. When I’m at home I am surrounded by my families faith. No matter what I was going through, I could always rely on my fathers faith, or my mothers faith, or even my brothers faith to keep me encouraged and to see me through. Being around them strengthened my own faith. But when I went off to college my own faith began to struggle because I wasn’t plugged in or surrounded by people who could support and encourage my faith. But that’s not the main reason why my faith struggled, it suffered because I wasn’t intentionally pursuing God and his word in my everyday life.
At home I didn’t have to intentionally choose God, his presence was already there. For example, Christian music was basically all that was played whether it be in the car or at home. When I woke up in the morning the kitchen radio would have a sermon playing, so that would be what I listened to as I had my breakfast or cleaned the house. My mother would always pray with me, either in the morning or before we went to sleep and I would constantly find my dad and brother watching sermons on YouTube or my mom listening to African gospel choirs on there. The examples could go on and on, but essentially my parents had infused God and his word into their home. And because of that, when I was at home, that environment would be my reminder that I needed to pray, read God’s word and further develop my faith. When I left that environment, I still had my faith but I didn’t create an environment for myself that would enable my faith to grow.
College is not full of believers, I knew that going in but I hadn’t fully grasped that it would impact my faith the way it did. Like I said before I didn’t plug myself into a church or faith based organization to support my spirituality and that played a part in my struggle. I kept myself very busy involving myself in many different organizations and trying to be a leader on campus. I don’t regret my decisions to be involved on campus, but I do wish that I had carved out more time for God.
My time here in London has made me more self-aware about my personality and my dreams but its also made me aware of my faith and its lack of growth. My time with God had consisted of me reading a verse or chapter from the bible and praying before I went to bed and that was fine for awhile but I had stayed in that stage for three years! It had become second nature, I wasn’t getting what I used to get out of it and most of the time I was too tired to fully comprehend what I was reading. So I became more and more distant from God and started questioning my faith and trying to comprehend God and make him tangible. It wasn’t till I came to London and started delving deep into discovering who I am and who I wanted to be, that I confronted my issues with my faith. I came to the realization that God is big, bigger than me, and you, and this whole universe. There are things about God that I will never be able to comprehend or understand with my human mind but that’s what makes him God. The fact that a God that powerful would want a relationship with me and every other person out there, just goes to prove the unconditional love he has for us. I would be crazy not to try to return that love by intentionally choosing him everyday. Intentionally choosing to get know him by reading his word, praying, and talking to him. I have to intentionally choose to listen to what he has to say and intentionally choose to obey.
Faith has to be intentional.