3 Ways to Strengthen Your Faith in the Summer
As my first year of college comes to an end and I head back home for the summer, I am elated to have found community through Delight. Like many people my own age, I worried that it would be difficult to maintain my faith coming into college. However, Delight gave me a home away from home and girls to pursue Jesus with. As I returned home for the summer, it started to sink in that I wouldn’t have my weekly Delight dates or meetings. The temporary disconnect from my Delight chapter made me fearful of adjusting to life without my community to support me this summer.
I imagine many of us have felt this way when we find ourselves a part from a community that rooted us in Christ. Whether you’re parting with a home church, a group of friends, or Delight, it can be difficult to consistently walk with Jesus without a community to guide you. I recognize my own struggles in this area and want to offer some advice on how you can keep a strong relationship with Christ, even away from your usual community this summer.
1. When it feels hard to pursue God, pursue Him even more.
“DRAW NEAR TO GOD AND HE WILL DRAW NEAR TO YOU.”
The Bible encourages us to lean into God and He will lean into us. This is so true!
Sometimes when I don’t hear God’s voice as clearly as I have in the past, I encourage myself to listen to what God is saying and read my Bible even more. God is always there, and He is always listening. We have to be intentional about seeking Him, even when it feels difficult or tiring. I know a common temptation for myself is to sleep in until the last minute. This summer is a great time to relax, but I encourage you to find fulfillment in rising early to intentionally spend time with God. There is nothing more strengthening than going to Him first each and every morning. Like Nike says, just do it!
2. Embrace your alone time with God.
I know no one likes being alone for too long. However, I do believe to have a deep connection with Christ, we need moments of solitude with just Him. Community and small groups are great, but we must all individually experience Christ to receive all He wants for each of us.
One of my dearest friends, who is a strong woman of faith, goes on dates by herself which she considers dates with Jesus. She will go out to eat at a sit-down restaurant and pull out her devotional and bible and literally have a date with Jesus. It may seem cheesy, but I know this really helps her form a deep connection with Christ where it’s just her and Him together.
If you’re someone who finds the summer harder because you are away from your community, I really encourage you to embrace this opportunity to be alone with God. Hear what He has for you specifically and what He wants to do through your life.
3. Don’t hesitate to start another community.
“FOR WHERE TWO OR THREE GATHER IN MY NAME, THERE AM I WITH THEM.”
Whether you’re back home, abroad, or interning, you can start a community with Christ anywhere. The Delight Summer Series is a great way to have a group of girls to pursue God with. However, if you’re unable to be a part of one, ask God for a community that He wants you to be a part of. It can be something as small as a bible study with your parents or siblings, joining a new church, or reaching out to a coworker who shares the sam faith.
I know I am often hesitant to find a new community if I am accustomed to another one. However, I would have never met the girls in Delight without stepping outside of my comfort zone freshman year. Whatever you hope for, I encourage you to really go to who or where God is leading you. Join or start a new community where you can chase after God’s heart this summer.
While a shift in location can disrupt the routine of school or seeing our friends every day, no new place can ever keep us from the love and warmth of our Father. If you had any doubts of maintaining your faith this summer, I hope my advice not only encourages you but enables you to make your faith stronger. Whether it be through alone time with God or new people to pour into, I pray God reveals himself to you and His plans for your life in big ways this summer.
About the Author
Felicia McGill / @kawaii_felicia
Hi everyone! I’m Felicia and I’m a sophomore at the University of South Carolina. I’m 19 years old and a Math major with a minor in Spanish. As my studies suggest, I love learning about numbers (cringy, I know) and hispanic culture and food. In my free time I can usually be found reading a book, playing intramural soccer, or putting avocado on anything I eat! I am excited and honored to be a Delight blog contributor for this semester and I cannot wait to see how God will work in our lives this season.