Friday, January 18|Stories

Friday Stories: Be Careful What You Ask For

Hi! I’m Rachel.

Before transferring to PLNU two years ago from community college near my hometown in the Bay Area, I wasn’t involved in any kind of college group or community. In fact, I’d spent two whole years working tirelessly to start a college group at my home church. I longed so badly to be part of a group of people my age in the same stage of life and having similar struggles in their faith journey. Mostly, I just really wanted a group of core friends.

So when I moved to San Diego, I had a list of a few churches to check out – and Flood quickly felt like home. It also helped that the band The Eagle and Child was playing, and they had been the band at Hume Lake summer camp that I had attended as a leader a few weeks prior to moving! I filled out a connection card that day and was ready to start coming to church regularly.

Before moving, I had asked God to make me really uncomfortable, in order for me to grow and be stretched in new ways.

Unfortunately, the way He chose to do this was by having me spend a lot of time alone. I stopped attending Flood, didn’t follow up with the connection email I received, and wasn’t building friendships. The friends I did have didn’t push me to be in community, but chose to be involved in things without me – so I spent a lot more time alone than expected.

It was a weird part of my life – while part of me couldn’t wait to go home, I didn’t know if being home would be much better.

Fast forward to the beginning of this school year – I made it a priority from the first weekend back at school to get back to Flood and start attending the college group regularly. I also took the next step to attend college retreat and it changed everything for me. Solid friendships formed for me there, and I really got to know the heart of the core group of college students involved in this encouraging and life-giving crew that I now get to call some of my best friends. I could not be more stoked on the friendships I’ve made through the Flood college group.

I wish someone had pushed me to get involved with this group the day I moved down here. So if you’re like me, consider this your push!

Come check out college group and meet some of the people who helped change my life. Being a part of an encouraging and supportive community has made all the difference in my college experience, and my faith. I can’t wait to continue growing in friendship with this crew as I also grow in my relationship with Jesus, in truthfulness, honesty, love, friendship, and laughter. These people have been a game changer for me, and I’m so thankful and hopeful for what’s to come.

Rachel Hernandez is finishing her senior year at Point Loma Nazarene University.