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Being Christian in College

College is full of so many new experiences and entering at 18 years old can sometimes feel overwhelming.  You’re forced to make so many decisions and you’re often thrown into an environment with ideals and beliefs that go against everything you learned from back home.

You want to learn new things, make new friends and join new organizations. While at the same time making sure you find a new church if you’re going to school far from home. You have to learn how to integrate these worlds together.

That can sometimes be hard when professors and classmates indirectly mock what you believe. Every single person has the right to believe in whatever they choose, so I find it hard to understand why those who don’t believe in Jesus feel the need to put others down as if they are so superior.

This doesn’t create a healthy environment for Christian students, who now feel like they can’t truly express themselves because no one will take them serious. College is supposed to be an open place where people from all different backgrounds come together for the common goal of advancing education.

The social aspects can also be tricky. For the most part you’ve probably met some great people to hang out with from your dorm, class or wherever. It’s nice to have people to go to the mall or binge watch your fave Netflix shows.

But, what happens when it’s time to go out? And everyone is pre-gaming and the goal is to pretty much forget your own name. Do you join in or do you stand on the sidelines until it’s over? You want to have fun with everyone else but clearly you were taught against drinking in excess.

Sex is another hot topic that might confuse a lot of your peers. Some people might see the thought of “waiting until marriage” restraining while other might say it’s adorable. That’s why it’s so important to find true friends who respect what you believe and won’t try to convince you otherwise.

After you’ve been in school for awhile and have met people, your friends most likely know that you’re a Christian by how you act and because friends should know stuff about each other!

Then you meet that one person who’s going through an existential crisis and they really want you to know all about it. Now, do you put your arm around them and say “well, let me tell you about this guy I know who goes by the name of Jesus..” or, do you just sit there listening and take it slow with the evangelising.

Now, of course there might not be huge moral decisions to make everyday. You go through school and have homework just like every other student. However, when the stresses of school begin to pile up it’s nice to have a solid foundation to fall back on. You have someone to cast your cares on when life gets tough. And the Bible provides thoughtful calming words reminding us not to be anxious.

Going to church on Sunday morning’s is also a rejuvenating start to each week (especially with those praise and worship songs). Figuring out who you are in college is it’s own complexity, so adding religion and the philosophies that you learn from school can either make it easier or more difficult for some. Whichever, you should never feel bad for what you believe or make others feel bad for what they believe.

Tiana is a senior at San Jose State University and she is learning to take each day one step at a time while adjusting to life in the Bay Area. She's often watching YouTube videos on D.I.Y projects or hair care, but majority of the time she's watching Parks and Rec episodes while pretending to do homework. In the midst of all that homework dodging she's also casually planning her dream wedding. 
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