Hope you all have had a great week so far! I’m excited to share my thoughts with you today.
This week, I went to the church that I started going to since the end of last semester: Antioch Community Church Fullerton. I have really grown to love my church — the worship, the pastor, and especially the community.
I felt so welcomed the moment I entered Antioch, and I've felt that consistent hospitality and love ever since. This is, what I believe, the beauty of the local church. It is just a body of believers coming together and doing life as a family.
Finding a church in college is always tough. For the first semester you bounce around from church to church each week. And right when you think you’ve found the one, you try another church and it seems like that’s the best church you’ve ever been to. It is so hard deciding on where to stay planted. Like, SO hard.
I mean, it's hard just waking up to go to church. There will be weekends where you are busy, busy, busy all of Friday and Saturday, so when Sunday comes around, all you want to do is sleep in until 11 and then go make yourself a waffle in the Caf.
I want to give you two pieces of advice as you are thinking about choosing a church when you come to college.
Number one: Go to church.
This one is very simple but also extremely relevant. It is so easy to go to Biola and naturally think that you are getting all the Bible time you need in your classes and in chapels, but Bible classes and chapels are not substitutes for the local church. The community and doing life aspect of the local church is what God desires in our life. It is easy to think that the community you find at Biola can be a substitute for the community that the local church provides. Don't get me wrong, the Biola community is amazing and life-giving, but there is just something different about doing life with people from all different walks of life. No matter their age, occupation, ethnicity, or culture, when you are all able to come together, something beautiful happens.
Number two: Church hunt first semester, stick with one second semester.
What I mean by this is that you should try all sorts of different churches your first semester. Try churches that are extremely similar to your one at home. Try churches that are completely different than your church at home. Don’t be afraid to go out of your comfort zone because you might really find something you like. Then, second semester, stick with one. Pick the one that felt like home but still had kept you thinking, what if there is a better one? No church is going to be perfect since we as humans are flawed, so commit to the one you feel at peace with.
Now obviously, if you don’t find a church that you like or don’t find one that feels like home, keep searching. This isn’t a perfect formula, but it's pretty helpful advice I was told when I first got to college.
I hope this was of some help to you! Don’t stress, God will lead you to where you need to be.