Heroes of faith challenge students to fight distractions, remain faithful until finish line

As every semester draws to a close, the tendency can be to slack off instead of buckle down. Because the excitement that summer is inching closer and closer can overwhelm even the best of students, end-of-school slacking is a common occurrence. The sun deck is open, campus is gorgeous and summer plans are close to being finalized. For students, it’s a wonder that we can focus at all.

But though distractions abound, we shouldn’t resort to living as unfaithful students. The Bible tells that many of God’s servants were faithful until their tasks were finished. For example, Joseph obeyed the Lord through numerous trials in multiple difficult environments that we may never comprehend. His faithfulness to God’s law and to His sovereign will ultimately saved God’s people from famine in Egypt. Peter and Paul lived faithful lives, spreading the Gospel and encouraging churches until they were martyred for Christ.

These heroes of the faith endured, persevered and served God with a single focus. Their lives were marked by faithful discipline, not by negligence and distractions. Can you imagine if Peter and Paul weren’t as faithful as they could have been because they were distracted by something like Twitter or personality quizzes or another latte run? What if Joseph didn’t get around to reuniting with his brothers and helping the Israelites because he wanted to spend his afternoons tanning in the Egyptian sun?

That sounds almost ridiculous — and none of those things are innately wrong — but do we ever consider our time management and faithfulness in this way? Are we skipping out on an A in a class because ice cream sounded better instead of studying for the final? Are we skipping class because we have absences to spare, and we’d rather shop or watch a game or work on a tan?

It’s true that everyone needs a break. We all need some downtime that allows us to enjoy soft serve in a waffle cone at the Greenville Drive. But we’re called to manage our time with great wisdom. If we consider where we are and what we are called to be doing at this time, we’ll see that we should be serving God to the best of our abilities while at college. God’s standard of faithfulness shows us that we need to count each assignment and class hour as important for our development as His servants. Even if it’s just the simple discipline of waking up on time to get to class at 8 a.m., it shows that we want to be faithful.

Many passages in the Bible admonish believers to be faithful, but Colossians 3:23-24 gives a simple, basic command of faithfulness, and the passage states our motivation as well: “And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men; Knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance: for ye serve the Lord Christ.”

Let’s commit to faithfulness in our final weeks of the academic year. Faithfulness in classes, time management, prayer group, discipleship — whatever it is, God provides the grace to accomplish it. And once we finish on May 9, we can celebrate a successful semester that was made possible by Christ motivating us to faithfulness.