Navigating My Spirituality in College

When I first came to college, I didn’t really take into account how it would affect me when it came to my spirituality. 

The beginning of my life was full of church. We went to church on Sunday and bible studies on Wednesday. If there were youth fellowship groups, I would attend the events and bible studies they put on as well.

Towards my teenage years, my family and I didn’t have a steady church we were going to. It didn’t really bother me because if I had questions, a need for more knowledge, or a want for the Word, I went to my father. He is very well versed and, in my opinion, wise. My mother eventually settled down and found a messianic congregation to attend but by then I was a senior in high school. I was more focused on college and wasn’t very interested in giving a new place a try. I, also, wasn’t used to the ways her new congregation functioned, their traditions, etc.

It doesn’t mean I wasn’t curious. I was. I just didn’t click the way I did with other places we’d given a try. By the time I’d come into college, I wasn’t a daily attender anymore. The vibe wasn’t there for me and being a freshman in college, my focus was primarily surviving the school year.

That first year, I prayed as often as possible, and I tried to stay diligent about doing so. My suitemate and I would have discussions about the bible. I would listen to praise music while doing yoga. I tried not to get pulled under with school and stress, but I still felt like I wasn’t doing my best.

My second year…I can barely remember what I did to ground myself spiritually that year. I barely even remember what classes I took that year, but I told myself I would get better the next year.

I’m now in my junior year of college and I’ve found some peace within myself having been lost on how to proceed. I found that my relationship with God and with my savior Yeshua (Jesus) isn’t contingent on my attending church 24/7.  

A few things have helped me find a bit of this peace. I found that talking with people about my faith really strengthens it. I love hearing other people’s views on scriptures and I enjoy the stimulation it gives me to share my own knowledge, truth, and love.

Sometimes, I’ll open my bible or my verse of the day app and read scripture. I may not understand it at that moment, but it gives me the push to go further than just reading the scripture. It gives me the drive to try my best to understand it. One thing I plan on doing is attending some of the bible studies and services on campus available to me.

I went to one my sophomore year and it was…weird. The sermon wasn’t anything I was used to, and it didn’t sound right or resonate within me. I went to another this year; it was more of a bible talk rather than a bible study. I liked the format, but it still wasn’t for me. Knowing this, I must continue the search for what is right for me. In the meantime, I’ve been listening to services online from different congregations.

If you’re struggling with your spirituality or faith while in college, I want you to know that it is perfectly normal. Continue on your journey and don’t give up.