You have your syllabi and you textbooks. You have keys for you new dorm, apartment or east campus shanty. You’re wondering who you’ll hang out with the most, where you’ll hang out, and how you’ll spend most of your time. We spend a lot of time preparing for our semester, but it’s all too easy to forget our most important preparation: how will I worship and grow spiritually this semester?
Ask yourself, do you want this semester to count? Do you want to look back on it regretfully, or thankfully? I ask, because I know that our joy, happiness, and spiritual well-being hang in the balance. In our first few weeks of every semester we set the pattern for our entire semester, so here a few questions to think through.
Who do I want to spend time with this semester? How will I stay connected into Christian community?
How can I actively pursue spiritual growth? Veritas? Small groups?
When can I set aside regular time to pray and read my bible?
What sins do I need to resist this semester? What idols do I need repent?
How can I grow in holiness this semester?
Where can I serve others this semester? The Crossing? Granny’s House?
In what areas of theological understanding would I like to mature?
Our personal resistance to answering questions like these shows our hardness of heart toward God. The reality is, however, that the flesh in all of us resists planning for spiritual growth. The great news for all of us is that God gave us his Holy Spirit to put our flesh to death (Rom. 8:13). By his loving grace, Christ is faithful to complete the work he started in us (Phil. 1:6). So let’s walk in confidence that God is at work in us to make this semester count.