Faith on Campus: Learning who we are

Aaron Werner

A few months ago I was asked by the Sentry staff to write a series of articles that focus on the importance of faith, and how it relates to college students. I realize that some of you, perhaps a majority have already stopped reading. Other stuents have rolled your eyes and said to yourself something like “reading this is a waste of my time.” Maybe others are reading this just to find a way to refute it later on. Finally, others may be interested in what I have to say. Whichever is the case, I hope this article sparks some type of interest that will allow you to have an open-minded dialogue with yourself about what you really believe.

Before I start, I would like to thank the Sentry staff for giving me this opportunity and briefly explain what my relationship to the Crowder Community is.

My official title is director for the Baptist Student Union, or BSU. We are an official Crowder student organization that meets on a regular basis throughout the year. We sponsor events like “Pie Day” and the “Back To School BBQ.” We have also taken numerous trips in the United States and around the world for the purpose of helping others and telling people about what we believe. Ultimately, everything we do is about honoring God. Personally, I have been leading this organization for 15 years; however, the BSU has been an organization at Crowder since around 1965.

What have I seen over the last 15 years of working with college students at Crowder as it pertains to faith? I’ve had conversations with hundreds of students from almost all walks of life about various issues concerning this topic. I have found that most incoming freshman come into college searching for who they are, the meaning of their life if you will. After all, the decisions made during college years are some of the most far reaching ones that are made. College is where things start becoming real. So whether you keep, find, or abandon your faith in God, it could stay with you for years to come, if not until the end.

One of my goals for students who come in with a strong sense of faith in God is to give them a broader view of life by taking missionary trips. The impact on a student’s world view is huge when they see people who have lost everything or have very little but still cling to their faith in God.

Students that come to our meetings are also encouraged to turn the faith they have from their parents to their own. Something that isn’t yours can only be carried for so long before it becomes a burden. But when something is yours, and you cherish it, then it becomes something that you cannot live without.