Now that the Mid-Sem Break has come, I guess I’ve got a bit of time to relax and reflect over how things have been since MYC, or maybe the whole year for that matter. Anyway, this semester at uni has been much much more relaxing than last semester. Having that one free day (as opposed to no free days) makes a huge difference in my energy levels. I’ve felt much better over the course of this semester about everything I’m doing. Shall probably go through each thing in some detail.
So in having four days this semester rather than five, the only major drag is that I have five courses to worry about, rather than four (sadly two of my math courses count as half a course each but have nearly just as much work as a full course). I regrettably have to admit that I’ve lapsed back into my pattern of not doing any of my tute homework again; I powered through the first week’s worth of homework and again things just died starting the week after that. However, that hasn’t stopped me from getting decent marks in my assignments and class tests. There is some real confusion in how I’m doing reasonably well in my courses even though I’m not really put much effort into studying. Surely in response to my last post, “where was God in all this?” He was there the entire time carrying me through all my uni work, that’s where.
The rest of the semester is looking fairly well; there are still assignments and test to come but I suppose we will always be facing them anyhow. And being my third year of study, there must be some moderate degree of difficulty to my courses, otherwise it wouldn’t really be called “third year”. A somewhat downside to uni right now is my lack of success in internships. Of course having put minimal effort into my applications and research, one could only blame me and my lack of effort. All hope is nearly lost for me but that’s okay, I have stronger intentions to go to Hong Kong at the end of this year; and I trust that God will provide a job for me when the time comes, there is no real need to go out of my way to desperately search for one now. Sounds like a stupid view to adopt, I can’t say that I’m fully convinced that it will work out well for me but I certainly prefer this path more.
Leading another fairly large Bible Study group again this semester alongside our MTSer, Alan. Groups are all guys or all girls this semester (obviously I’m leading an all guys group). One good thing about my group is that I know a fair number of them already prior to this semester so establishing a relationship with the group was easier. Following up on the group isn’t too hard as I have ample ways to contact them. My major setback each week is my inability to wrap up the Bible Study on time. In fact that happens at youth group too haha. Sadly during set group times such as Bible Study, we don’t really have the freedom to chat for hours on end; we’re limited to that one hour. But when your group gets good discussion going, it’s hard to make them move on to finish the study.
I get a few opportunities here and there to chat to my group members to see where they’re at in their Christian lives; it’s many and usually only for a short moment but gradually I think my group is maturing in their faith and their desire to glorify God at uni. Managed to get into a really good conversation on the train once with one of my group members; it was good to find out more about that person’s circumstances and to understand what they hope to get our of Bible Study and such. Hopefully I’ll be able to give him what he needs in those areas in the coming weeks.
Other than my Bible Study group, it’s been cool chatting to a few people in our CBS hangout room at uni. I literally only have those two hours of break at uni on Wednesday and each week they seem well spent in chatting with other people in my faculty and hearing their thoughts and opinions on different matters. Seeing how the whole faculty is growing makes me feel more relieved about stepping back as a leader at CBS and entrusting that role to the younger students, and giving them a chance to lead and such.
I think after many years of changing around the leadership structure and working out goals and stuff, we’ve finally started to settle down into a routine where we can get things efficiently and plan strategically and dynamically for various goals at the same time. We might not have found the most optimal method in organising things and getting things done but by the grace of God we’ve managed to make huge improvements from how things were at the start of the year. A more concrete and solid foundation has allowed us to look after the people at our church better and helped us chase up newcomers more effectively. And for once we can actually start thinking about really long term goals; so not about what we plan to do next week or next term; but rather we can actually think about things such as leadership structure next year and the year after. Hopefully this second half the year (well, final third to be more precise) will see us able to reach and convict people with the gospel of Jesus and compel them to give their lives to Him for His glory.
As for youth group, even though I said before that I feel discouraged at times about how things might not go well on some weeks, I think it might because I’ve been trying to focus on the group as a whole, when rather the real growth takes place through individual relationships. And getting to know the youth better over the last few months (and the first half of this year) has really helped me understand them better and see how much they’ve matured over the years. Surely, to not waste my life, it means I have to put more effort into individual relationships so that I can find ways to encourage and grow the people under my care. Perhaps I’m not quite ready to lead the youth group as a whole but in directing which way our youth group is heading I think I’m beginning to see that it starts deep down at the roots of friendship and unity in Christ. Only after we’ve built upon those roots may we then progress as a youth group living and serving Jesus.
All in all I think this semester has allowed me to find renewed strength in the things I’m doing; and while I’ll feel anxious here and there about all the other things I need to do (particularly my assignments right after this post), if God has been able to carry me through thus far, what worry would I need to have in other things? Of course it doesn’t mean I live my life carelessly, but it means I can afford to give up more of my time for things such as this blog, since clearly if I held back every time, I’ll continually find an excuse to put these things off, and that would be pretty bad particularly when I tell my youth to read their Bibles daily. Probably shouldn’t ask them for something as challenging as that unless I’m prepared to do that myself.
In the meantime, more work awaits me, as well as a lot of 21sts, along with my own 21st. So many things to do; but so many more things to do for Christ. It shall be a good final four months to the end of this year.