Ministering to college students since I began working at North Side has shown me that there aren’t many new temptations facing college students. In fact, the same things that I teach on or counsel concerning one year or the same issues being addressed next year. That’s why, a few years ago, I decided to write what the Bible says about 15 areas in which college students struggle. I titled the book Freshman 15.
Freshman fifteen is an Americanized concept proposing that when students conclude their freshman year at college, they are approximately fifteen pounds heavier than when that school year began. The theory rests on the fact that many college students experience an increase in their weight due to an excessive amount of alcohol, lack of sufficient exercise, and the consistent consumption of unhealthy food eaten at an unwise time and in exorbitant amounts.
My theory is that every college student will gain weight in college, but that doesn’t have to be a negative thing. People in the ancient world spoke of giving weight to something as giving it glory or heightening it to a place of significance in one’s life. You give something weight by valuing it. In your time at college, you will put on the freshmen fifteen. I would just recommend that you put it on in all the right places.
You have a choice as you enter your college experience. Where you direct your devotion is completely up to you. No parent, roommate, or professor can choose it for you. You now have an unprecedented amount of freedom to finally let you be you. So, who are you going to be?
When I entered college, I attempted to give weight to Jesus Christ in every area of my life. I was a Christian, but I arrived at an impasse of deciding if I was truly going to follow him or not. In college, I didn’t have a perfect track record. I made more mistakes than successes, but with every passing experience, I realized that life was just a whole lot better when I desired Jesus to get involved in every area.
In my first job out of college, I worked with college students every day who had to make the same decision. I saw students struggle in relationships, calling, obedience, and finding God’s will. In every one of those areas, each college student would decide whether or not he or she would give Jesus glory through the decision. Would the student decide to take Jesus’ teachings seriously? Would the student desire to date according to biblical principles? Would that student resolve to take Christ at his word and try something impossible on his or her campus?
While the book was written for college students, I’ve been very humbled that people outside of college have said that a chapter on purity, or social drinking, or budgeting have helped them. I’m including a free chapter from the book that I hope will encourage or inspire you to make Jesus the one thing you prize more than anything else.
Because we all have one thing we are living for. Whatever it is, it had better be worth it.
You can get your copy for yourself or as a gift to a graduate here.