Panic sets in. Awkwardness develops, nervousness overwhelms you, and concern arrives on the scene. We’ve all had that moment when we experience these emotions when we are asked about Lumerit Education and what it is. Then you have to have that conversation when we explain to people why we chose to do college this way or to even explain why we aren’t going to a “real college”. I don’t know about you, but I know there were times (especially in the beginning) where I was insecure about sharing my alternative approach to college with family, friends, and people in general.
Personally, I tried the traditional college setting when I started a local dual program for high school students. For me, it was not a great fit and I knew that I wanted to get a college degree but not in the traditional sense. I wanted to have a life outside of studying, classes, and negative peer influence. It was only a short time after that moment that I decided to seek other options for college, that God directed me to Lumerit Education. It was a great fit and met the criteria I was hoping for and seeking for; the flexibility, affordability, and positive relational influences.
Even though I was out of the typical college community, I still felt the need to keep up with everyone in the same stage of my degree as me. I struggled with adapting to studying for CLEPS/DSSTS and stopped gaining credits for a good six – nine months. With my competitive need to keep up with my peers and my frustration of not gaining credits, I came so close to giving up and not completing my degree.
It was at this point God spoke to me and asked me who I was competing against and why was I competing against them? What was I aiming to achieve with maintaining the pace that society lives in? What did I have to gain from this whole ordeal? I was then reminded of the verse that was quoted on my high school graduation cake: Jeremiah 29:11. “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.”
IT HIT ME THEN! I WAS RUNNING THE WRONG RACE!!
I was seeking my own shellfish ambitions, not seeking the plans of the Lord, and running in the wrong direction. I was convicted by Colossians 3:2-4, Psalm 23:2-3, and 1 Corinthians 9:24. I had set my mind and focus on what society thought of me and not on what God wanted of me. I had lost all sense of God’s road map for my life, that I just started going down the same path as everyone and lost focus of the reason why I was pursuing this path.
I realized that I was putting too much pressure on myself to meet the expectations that were set by society’s standards, when I was actually attempting to go against society’s standards in the first place! Once I changed my perspective on my whole college journey and sought out the Lord’s will, everything started to get on track and I started gaining credits and enjoying my studies again! Trust me, things did not change overnight, nor did they change within that week, but I saw small improvements in my life. Those small improvements made a huge impact on my perspective on school and life in general!
This verse became my theme verse for a good portion of my college journey and helped me to focus on what truly mattered:
“Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives the prize? So run that you may obtain it.” - 1 Corinthians 9:24
Fast forward a few years and I ended up finishing my Bachelor’s degree within five years (one year after my friends) totally debt free and I could not be happier! Once I broke free of the chains of society’s expectations that I had adopted, I gained confidence and peace with what the Lord’s plan involved for my college experience. I look back now and reflect on all the things I was able to do within those five years and I am filled with joy and a sense of extreme thankfulness.
When I finished my Bachelor’s degree, I didn’t just earn my degree I earned so much more! I grew stronger as a person, learned about myself, earned job experience, started my own small, short-term business, traveled, met new friends, and strengthen my spiritual life. I took longer to complete my degree… Yeah... SO, WHAT?! I was blessed with so much more than just a degree! I would not change that for anything!
So I ask YOU, who are you comparing yourself to? Are you seeking the Lord’s will for every aspect of your life? What is the prize you are running towards?
Written by Cheyanne Flerx