45 days: the amount of days we have crossed off the 2016-2016 academic calendar. Have you yet to feel the momentum and positivity swing out from you? Maintaining momentum, motivation, the drive to accomplish schoolwork, and even get out of bed in the morning may all be starting to slip from your grasp. This condition is known as “college.” Side effects may include but are not limited to: finding yourself staying up later and later, realizing you forgot about an assignment due tomorrow, and you do not even have half of it finished; you may suddenly be falling asleep in class, realizing you are not as upbeat, lively, or focused as you were on August 29th. Whatever the symptoms may be, you may be suffering from a lack of momentum.
College is tiring, challenging, and sometimes exhausting. Students are forced to juggle their academic life, personal life, social life, spiritual life, and sometimes athletic life all in one 24 hour time period—it’s almost impossible. No wonder students are dragging themselves out of bed and out to class come mid-October.
Though college is meant to be challenging and yes, even tiring, it is also meant to be enjoyable. Enjoyment is meant to sit beside you in your classes, accompany you to your athletic practices, and meant to stand beside you while you comfort a hurting roommate or friend. “Enjoyment” may be described in this context as fun, pleasurable, or uplifting—though specific activities in college may be tiring or challenging, they are a part of a larger picture. This larger picture, however, is easily blurred by large momentum shifts. Students have a harder time appreciating the picture, and the enjoyment that comes from being in college, when exhaustion creeps into the frame.
So how are students meant to balance the “fun” and challenge of college? First, there must be an acknowledgement of, and desire for, God. Students must understand that they can do all things through Him who gives them strength. Furthermore, students must understand that apart from Christ they can do nothing. And once students understand their strength comes from Christ alone, they will feel the momentum shift in their direction once more.
Drawing strength and peace from Christ will promote both the ability to accomplish challenging tasks, and the ability to do so with a fun and grateful attitude. Once the student centers Christ as the focus of everything he or she does, the “joy of the Lord will be their strength” (Nehemiah 8:10 ESV), and everything they do, no matter how challenging or tiring, will include that element of enjoyment, because they know they are doing it with Christ as their source.