You know, a lot of people go to college for seven years.

Or 6 and a summer in my case.  I finished my Bachelor’s of Science in Education in lightning fast speed.  Several contributing factors here, not the least of which was just that I didn’t like school and wasn’t very good at it.  Ironic that I studied to be a teacher?

If you were to look at my transcripts, you’d see a pattern; my fall semesters had significantly lower GPA’s as I worked my way through college.  Maybe some of you are the same way.  Spring semester was spent trying to get the highest grades possible to cover up for my fall blunders.

The reason for my terrible fall semester grades?  Pine Cove.

Every summer I’d work, and I’d come back and couldn’t get into an academic rhythm.  I’d like to explain (briefly) why I think that was the case and why it was dumb of me (and maybe dumb of you!) to be that way.

I think working at Pine Cove on summer staff was one of the first truly meaningful things that I had done with my life.  I would sit down with students most afternoons during free time and share the gospel with them.  I’d let God work through me to transform hearts of young people day in and day out.  Just the typical life of a summer counselor.

Then I’d return in the fall to college and be sitting through (or skipping) lectures because I thought they were meaningless.  Then my A’s became B’s…actually there weren’t too many A’s to begin with…but my B’s became C’s, and C’s to D’s and even a couple of D’s became F’s.  All because I was bored with what I was doing and thought that it didn’t matter.

Sweet.

While there is something to be said for working towards things that are eternal, there is also something to be said for answering the calling that God has placed on your life.  If you spend your whole life wishing you were doing something else, you’ll never be more than a mediocre college student like me!

Here’s the cool part.

Confronted with the reality that I had been working during the summers and just floating through the years hoping I would graduate sooner or later, I found out that it would take me 7 years to graduate…yikes Tommy Boy.  So, entering my third (yes third!) Senior year, my Dad told me I needed to “work at college with all of my heart, as working for the Lord, not for men.”  I enrolled for 34 hrs, passed 31 of them, student taught in the spring, and graduated the following summer.  Pretty impressive what God and a little paternal encouragement can do for you.  🙂

I hope that none of you let a good, meaningful, and impacting thing like working at PC in the summertime become a bad thing like I did in my life.  Making that transition back into college in the fall can be hard, but it’s totally possible.  I pray that you all are doing it well as you face midterms and finals coming up!