Thursday, August 9, 2012

Week Zero and Commonplaces

 My stack of books for this first 8 week term (minus a couple). 

"Week Zero", as it's called here at NSA, is coming to a close. This week was mainly pre-school classes geared to help incoming freshman get ready for the year and understand how things are going to work, what to expect, and tips on how to do well in college. I found it very helpful and overall I'm not too stressed out. =) I know it's going to be a difficult and rigorous road ahead, but with perseverance and God's grace I will survive. It's humbling to know college is not something I can do by my own strength and I have to trust God to help me. There will be times when I don't think I can stuff one more latin word in my brain or I can't keep my eyes open one minute longer, but I can't stop. I can't give up. I have to keep going and force myself to go beyond the limitations I think I have. Those limitations have been set in my mind only because I have never been pushed to go beyond them before. If I throw up my hands and give in when the going gets tough I will never succeed. I will never know how far I can push myself and I will have wasted all the time and money invested in my education.
As part of our preparation for college one of our professors assigned us a 300 page book, Thriving At College by Alex Chediak, on Tuesday to have ready to discuss by Thursday afternoon. It was really gratifying to finish the entire book Thursday morning and still have had time in the previous two days to spend time on other things. I know going into college, one of the challenges of this year will be learning to read faster.

This year as a part of our rhetoric class we are required to keep a commonplace book and have at least 10 new quotes a week. Awww shucks. =D
I've kept a commonplace book for several years now so it shouldn't be a big deal. I'm looking forward to it. =) I found a notebook that says on the front, "Some people dream of success while other wake up and work hard at it." I thought that would be fitting. =)

There are a couple quotes from Thriving at College that are going in my book and I thought I'd share them here as well.

You are in college to learn how to think so that you can, for the rest of your life, increasingly love God with a well-trained mind.

Thinking you can know God's personal will in advance magnifies the stress it claims to remove. Trusting in God's control brings peace and rest.

You can love God with all your mind by being fully present in your studies, knowing that God is preparing you for what lies ahead in ways you cannot fully comprehend.

You are serving the Lord when you faithfully attend classes, do your homework, complete course projects, and study for exams. 

Whatever you're doing be fully present in it. 

College is a temporary season of academic preparation and growth so that you can serve God more effectively with the rest of your adult life. If you've chosen to go to college, then God's plan is that college be a springboard into all that goes with responsible Christian adulthood.

A Christianity not practiced today becomes a Christianity that is absent tomorrow.

"There is only one kind of life that truly wins, and that is the one that places faith in the hands of the Savior."

Momma, this is for you.


  1. :-) Was that blooming in someone's yard? Pretty.

    So glad you had a great start to what will surely be a great year. I can't wait to see how God grows you, uses you, changes you all for His glory.

    I love you!

  2. Good quotes. One of them fits well with what Don Carson wrote in "Pastor as Scholar and Scholar and Pastor:"

    Transparently, this means that using our minds and wills in a lazy, slapdash, or arrogant way is not only pathetic, but it verges on the blasphemous.

    We are glad to hear it is going well.

    Christ's blessings on you.


  3. Thank you for posting such wonderful quotes, sounds like a book I need to read! I especially love the quote regarding God's personal will; that's something I've been struggling with over the past few weeks.

    I'm praying for your time at NSA, Marissa, excited for what the Lord has prepared to teach you!