As I, and other college seniors, approach finals and graduation, two thoughts are constantly lingering in the back of our minds: the question of: “holy crap, what am I doing with my life?!” and, of course, regrets.
As I’ve been writing this blog, I’ve had a persistent thought that has been rather disappointing to think about. For the last four years, I really never got involved in any organizations about which I was passionate. Most importantly, I never found a church.
As a Christian, I feel that this would have been extremely beneficial for me, to find a community of like faith and beliefs with which to be involved. I always found an excuse, such as: being too tired on the weekends, only having one day to get homework done, and working too late on Saturdays to get up for church. All of these seemed reasonable at the time, but looking back, I realize they were mostly excuses for my being uncomfortable with trying something new. As someone who is shy, it’s difficult for me to get involved with a new group. However, I think the initial awkwardness would have been well worth it, and I’m not the only one who feels this way.
Research has been done which has shown evidence that those who are associated with a religion and are involved in a spiritual/religious group, are less likely to experience a stress-related mental illness.
“They’re better able to cope with stress, they heal faster from illness, and they experience increased benefits to their health and well-being. On an intellectual level, spirituality connects you to the world, which in turn enables you to stop trying to control things all by yourself. When you feel part of a greater whole, it’s easy to understand that you aren’t responsible for everything that happens in life.”
If making an effort to be involved with a church would have reduced my stress as research seems to indicate it would have, I absolutely regret not making that effort.
I recently talked with someone who has been involved with a Christian college organization (listen to this interview below) and she advises students, especially freshmen, to get involved for the support and sense of community it provides.