We all know the feeling. The sluggish, sleepy, not-quite thriving feeling of watching one too many Netflix shows in a row, of surviving off of coffee, or consistently waking up minutes before your lecture. All these things are considered a normal part of student life, but let’s face it, they don’t feel good, and they don’t help you to thrive in your walk with Jesus.
Building healthy, kingdom habits can be done at any time in the year, but why not take the opportunity at the start of a new academic year to try something new?
Commit to rhythms
Even if you love spontaneity, humans thrive off of regular rhythms in the week. For example, every Sunday committing to church, once a week committing to a small group, as well as weekly committing to a society at uni. These rhythms help us find our feet in the week and from there, we can add in spontaneous plans, say yes to nights out if we want to and know where there is space to spontaneously serve those around us.
Build atomic habits
Atomic Habits are small, regular practices that create big changes in our lives. For example, a habit such as regularly praying for friends whilst doing the washing up, or taking 10 minutes every morning to tidy your student house so it’s a fun place to host, will make your life easier over time.
Establish a routine for reading your Bible
Finding a regular time to read your Bible every day will be a bit of trial and error. Why? Because everyone is different and will find it easier at different times. At uni, I was an early riser and would love reading first thing. My best friend was a night owl and would spend time reading long after I’d gone to bed. It doesn’t matter when you read your Bible, but prioritise trying out routines that work for you, give yourself grace when you don’t stick to it, and try again. You will be left more in awe and feeling more fuelled for sticking to it.
Listening to God and acting on it
A student at the Fusion Conference a few years back inspired me when she said, “we need to minimise the time between God speaking and us acting. The more time that passes, the more room for doubt and for us to tag out.” First, remind yourself to listen to God’s voice in different moments. Between lectures. When sitting in coffee shops. On nights out. Then, when you think you have something to share for the people around you, choose to be bold enough to share it. Maybe you could share via text, write a letter to a stranger or approach them and tell them what you think God is saying over them. It’s true that the more you do this, the easier it gets, but this practice also helps you to live more in the adventure of seeing Kingdom on campus!
And finally… Give yourself grace!
Starting anything new takes time, so give yourself grace for when you forget, fall out of routine or choose fear over faith. There is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, so pause, reassess, and start again. You have so much to bring to your campus, so treat yourself with kindness as you seek boldness in the student mission adventure.