In the summertime, Regent takes on a new personality. Classes slow down and the buzz of student activity dies down to a quiet hum. As the heat outside goes up, it seems life in general has started to cool down.
By the time the school year was coming to an end, most of my peers had already begun buzzing about what they planned to do with their summers. The majority of them were headed back home, setting out to see past friends, work old jobs, and loaf around as much as possible. Others were going out to complete internships – boosting their resumes and gathering new life experiences. Another group chose to leave the country, spending their free months travelling the world and serving the Lord through missions.
I, on the other hand, had opted for a different path. I chose to spend my summer here at Regent. While my friends were off adventuring and exploring, I decided to spend my time working on campus, reflecting on my past year, and anticipating what the Lord would do the upcoming fall as I returned as a senior. So when the last of my classmates packed their suitcases and drove off for whatever plans they set before them, I stayed behind, watching from my window and falling into familiar patterns in a familiar place.
I never expected that the Lord had something else in mind. I am now in week six of my time here and, while I have found some time to work and reflect and rest, my summer has been far from ordinary. It’s true that things have slowed down – with only a handful of students in the area and one chapel every other week, there is not much for me to do. Yet, as the margins in my life have grown, God has found a way of filling them in unanticipated manners. Even now, my apartment is full of voices and laughter. Around me are friends that a month ago I had barely known – now they are some of my closest companions. In the vacuum left by an open summer and lack of expectation, God has taken what I once considered familiar and shown me that all along I never really knew what was under my nose the whole time.
That’s what summer is about. While it’s nice to rest, see new places, and have fun, there is almost nothing as powerful as realizing the world you live in is bigger than you think – that God is bigger than you think. And sometimes you don’t even have to leave school to see that. It is possible to have an adventure with Christ and never leave your community. All you have to do is slow down, look around, and notice the once-ordinary people who have always been brimming with potential. That’s where you find that no space is ever empty, but charged with possibility for wonder, growth and change. Maybe the world still is moving slowly. Yet, a steady pot over low heat will always begin to simmer and roll its way to a boil. Likewise, while your summer may seem dull at the moment, hold on and wait on God. You may find that in the monotony of day-to-day life, God can break through in unexpected ways.friends, friendship, simmer, summer, summer school