Courtney Fritts - Challenging for Improvement

Courtney Fritts, 19, decided to go the extra mile to help better herself as a student and as a person this semester when she opted to participate in what is known as the Kingdom Experiment with her church youth group. This experiment requires you to complete weekly challenges that are supposed to teach you important life lessons. An experiment varies from person to person, but the common component is that you have to give up something or do something that teaches you a lesson. For example, to learn patience you have to spend a week without passing any cars.

Every Sunday Fritts meets with her youth group and she discusses and plans what lesson she wants to learn and what challenge she is going to adopt for that week. This requires an intense commitment and self discipline so that she can make it through the week.

Describe the experiment you are doing now? The Kingdom experiment is a semester long study you can do with a small group on the beatitudes. The beatitudes are similar to the golden rules; patience, kindness, self-control, etc. It challenges you to be a better person in general, like it makes you see things in a different light. This experiment is a weekly thing, as in, every week we do a different challenge. A couple of weeks ago a challenge was that I wasn’t allowed to pass a car while I was driving. This was to teach me patience. This whole challenge is to have a good attitude about it; you need to be willing to learn something and keep an open mind.

What made you decide to do this? Initially I just wanted to get involved with a small group within my youth group at church. Once I started to do it, it helped me learn to appreciate the things I usually take for granted.

 How long will this last? The challenges last through the end of the semester with some weeks off when we can’t meet with each other for our weekly check ins on Sunday.

How many people are doing it? 12 of us are doing it.

Is it time consuming? Not really. On Sundays we meet for about 90 minutes. The big challenge is remembering to do the challenge while you are doing other things.

What has been the hardest challenge so far? There was a week when I had to sleep on the floor and take cold showers. This taught me to be thankful for the things that many consider basic necessities.

How well does it work with you being in college so far? It was inconvenient sleeping on the floor because my bed takes up majority of my bedroom so I had to keep my room pretty clean and just be careful.

How do you decide what challenge to do? There is a list every week that you pick from and during our meeting we read them and decide for ourselves. Personally I pick one that I don’t want to do so that it challenges me more.

What is the ultimate goal of doing these challenges? I would say it is just to better yourself and get closer to God. We need to learn something and make sure we don’t forget it.

Who do you rely on the most when you face a challenge that is trying for you? Honestly the other people within my group are very encouraging because they are going through the same things and God, of course.

Can you quit halfway? Technically you could but the people in my group keep me accountable, and I feel that the disappoint that would bring would get to me because I am not a quitter.

What have you learned so far? I have learned patience, to be thankful, to take a step back and not have as much of a temper and to be forgiving. I have taught myself to be the friend that I want to be and the person that I want to be which is very encouraging.

Have you noticed a difference within yourself having completed what you have so far? Yeah, I like to think that I carry over what I have learned from each challenge to the times we I don’t have a challenge.