In my job as a student worker, when I talk to students about life at university, I describe the campus as “the green house of growing up”. There’s enough research out to confirm that these days young adults don’t fully develop our values, opinions and perspectives until much later in life. Our teenaged development gets stretched, we are still forming and maturing into our late twenties. This means for me personally, perhaps I’ve only just arrived?
What green house of growth are you currently in? Who are the main influences on your environment? What is the soil of your week days like, the stuff that you are planted in most often? Who shaped your young adult years and where are they now?
The friends I made on my first day of university are still some of my most treasured friends today. We grew up in our halls of residence with late night chats about faith, life, love and hurt. We grew through break-ups and commitments, through successes and failures, through dawn walks home and whole house Sunday dinners. And despite our different backgrounds, experiences and world views, I grew up better, kinder and more connected because of my university friends.
Sometimes I think God grows us up in greenhouses not like us, so that we broaden our perspectives and realise the world isn’t just as we see it. Sometimes I think God lets us be the strongest influence in the green house, maybe if you are a manager or a teacher or a parent. And sometimes, we are planted in soil that’s hard, a bit dry, so that our roots have to grow deeper and so be sustained longer.
Father God, thank you for growth and life and maturity. Help us grow deep as well as tall, help us create environments of flourishing for those around us. And may you sustain us, no matter our circumstances today. Amen.
Blog taken from BBC Radio 4's 'Prayer For The Day': listen HERE to the broadcast (none of us were up at 5.43am after all!)
Photo by Johannes Hofmann on Unsplash