August 29, 2010 Leave a comment
This past week I had the opportunity to be an O-Group leader during new student Orientation at John Brown University. I had not been a part of Orientation since my freshman year (I am now a senior). After being a part of it again, I highly recommend it to any returning students, but especially seniors. Why is that? Orientation was a reminder of why I am at JBU and what it means to be a part of the JBU community.
The purpose of Orientation at John Brown University, and every other college, is to let new students know why the institution exists and what the students can expect during their four (or five or six…) years at the school. JBU really emphasizes community, academic integrity, and involvement in the classroom, on the campus, and within the city of Siloam Springs. While this information is critical for all the new students to learn; it is important for upperclassmen like me to be reminded of why they are at a place like JBU. As I have gone on in my educational career at JBU, I admit that I have forgotten what JBU is all about and the different things that set it apart from other colleges. I gradually forgot what a great blessing it is to be a part of a community like that found at JBU. While I may have been a leader at Orientation, I was being (re)oriented in the process.
Many times in life, it is helpful to have (re)orientation moments. The experiences can remind us what we believe, why we work where we do, why we are involved in this or that activity, or who we are as a Christian. These events remind us the importance of different aspects of our lives and reawaken the passion that we once had for them. Apathy can be a dangerous condition in our lives. Not only can it strip the passion for different areas of our lives; it can also distract us from our pursuit of Christ and His calling on each of our lives (if you are a Christian). When we lose that direction, we need to get (re)oriented. (re)Orientation moments come in many shapes and sizes (just like Silly Bandz), yet they all accomplish the same thing. As one Chinese proverb says “There are many paths to the top of the mountain, but the view is always the same.” In other words, different events can reawaken the need to (re)orient you, but once you have that realization, the result is often similar: the return of a passion that has gradually faded. The key to making the most of being (re)oriented is this: not letting it be just a “mountaintop experience.” Rather it should be a life-transforming encounter with something or Someone greater than yourself. (For a good blogpost about “mountaintop experiences,” click here) True, eventually we will have to come off of the mountain and back into the valley where life is lived, but we can do so as a (re)oriented person. How? Find a way to remind yourself of the (re)orientation and continue to seek out ways to apply it on a regular basis. Don’t waste your life in the fog of apathy; rather bask in the glory of who God has created you to be in His image and live it out.
My challenge to you in this post: First, ask yourself “What areas in of my life have I grown apathetic about? Where do I need to be (re)oriented?” Next, be honest with yourself and be intentional about finding the answers. Finally, get (re)oriented and fulfill the calling that God has placed on your life to serve Him in all aspects of your life.
Learn it. Love it. Live it.