Being a university student, I find it a struggle at points to be in such a secular environment. It gets me down to see so many people (and occasionally myself) falling into the trap that the devil has so enthusiastically laid out for us.
I’m not going to lie, it’s easy to be tempted to follow these lies and think that hey, it’s part of university life, or why not be like all the other students here at university? But it’s then in those moments that I try to focus myself on what would bring me not only instant satisfaction, but a long lasting, eternal happiness. Parties, drinking and getting up to all sorts, has sadly become some sort of norm in our society, it’s the lure of these weekend antics that trap most people our age. The one thing you’ll find, is that while they may act and say it’s fun and fulfilling, I’m sure it leaves them feeling empty and searching for something more to satisfy this desire they have for some sort of acceptance or appreciation.
Now I’m one of the blessed ones. I have a good support crew of young ‘on fire’ Catholic friends, we all hang out and are there for each other through these times of temptations. While my university friends are out getting wasted, I know I can always guarantee I’ll have more fun chilling with my good Catholics friends, watching Lord of the Rings and discussing the Catholic symbolism found so deeply entwined in the plot of this epic story (that was so just a cheeky wee advertisement for Lord of the Rings!) than out being ‘social’.
But for those of you who aren’t as blessed as I am, there are things out there to help you. Most universities in New Zealand have Catholic Tertiary Chaplaincy. These are places you can go to meet and connect with other young Catholics in your diocese. I really would encourage you to go. Catholic Tertiary Chaplaincy, as well as it being good for a place to meet other Catholics, is also a good place to go if you want to strengthen and grow in your spiritual life. Many of these places have resources and various events that can help you our during your university years.
Now I don’t mean to make university sound like a dark and evil place, originally some of the first universities were run by Catholic monks and nuns, but it’s just that in today’s society, the idea of university has changed. So one last piece of advice? Stay strong in who you are, don’t be influenced by these silly antics. You have Jesus Christ; a bottle of Jack Daniels will never be able to compete.
Let no one despise your youth, but set the believers an example in speech and conduct, in love, in faith, in purity.
– 1 Tim 4:12
Woman at the Well