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    How to Grow Spiritually in College

    Five practical insights for growing in Christ, from college leaders.

    Christy Heitger

    "These four years of Christian education are rather unique in the grand scheme of your life," says Flora. "There's so much academic, emotional, psychological, and spiritual potential for every student on campus. Since you're free from the many commitments that come later in life, this is the perfect time to really delve into your faith and determine what it means to you and live it out creatively."

    5. Remember: It's About God

    "Don't let the word 'discipline' scare you off, thinking that it sounds too much like work," says Rohm. "Yes, it takes effort, but the freeing joy that comes from practicing spiritual disciplines is amazing."

    Of course college life is hectic. You're bound to have days when you miss your devotions or you fail to make it to chapel. That's OK—don't have a big guilt trip over it. Just pick yourself back up and go on.

    "Guilt is not the motivator God wants to use to stay in touch with you," says Flora. "So let go of it. The earliest Christians didn't have the resources we have to practice daily devotions. They stayed in touch with God's Spirit through fellowship, prayer, conversation and Scripture.

    "You can do the same through conversations with students, and through interacting with Scriptures spoken in classes, cars, dorm rooms and cafeterias. And don't feel that praying before a meal is just a courtesy prayer because even a quick, simple prayer is keeping you in touch with God. Don't take these moments for granted. God uses them to nurture your relationship."

    And while we're on the subject of guilt, don't feel bad about taking a little time for yourself. Take a hike, sip coffee, or just chill with a good book. Carving out some personal time will refresh and revive your soul from the inside out.

    Remember, the spiritual disciplines aren't just about taking in information and ideas; they help you build a deeper relationship with God.

    Says Fisher, "This is the time—in the context of a Christian community—to experiment with the spiritual disciplines and really grow with God."


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