Tuesday, August 3, 2010

College for Christians

Weirdly enough (depending on what you define as weird), an unsolicited but personable e-mail brought me to this list of tips for Christian college students attending secular colleges. The e-mailer suggested my readers might be interested in it, and I am nothing if not a granter of wide berth to the word might. Here goes:

  • "Set aside time for prayer" -- Why not? Set some aside, but know that secular colleges will demand that the time set aside fall between 4am and 5am on alternating Thursdays. If you are discovered praying at other times, it's academic probation, and in some secular colleges, outright expulsion.

  • Note this next one carefully:
    Attend church regularly ... Don’t break your old habit of attending church every Sunday. Churches of different denominations are often located near campus, making it easy for students swing by. [sic]
    I can confirm from personal experience that churches are often located within several hours' drive of secular colleges, but I can't confirm the denominations are "different." Frankly, they all sound pretty much the same to me. Whatever the label, you never have to look far before finding a representation of a man being crucified, at which point know you're in god's loving arms. In recent years churches have made great strides in ease of student swing by [sic], or so I will choose to assume.

  • "Join Christian organizations" -- As in, join Christian organizations that aren't so "churchy." Many secular colleges will have active anti-gay activist clubs, for example, and they always need members willing to join them behind the scenes and perfect the art of trying not to seem to be a self-hating gay person while campaigning against the rights of gay people.

  • This next is perhaps the most important of them all, and I'm not sure I endorse it:
    Choose the right friends ... They don’t have to be Christian, but make sure your friends are positive to be around and respect your beliefs. They shouldn’t shun you for not partaking in activities that make you uncomfortable. Of course, you can expand your social circle by joining on-campus Christian organizations, which are composed of like-minded students.
    OK, well, they don't have to be Christian, but do you really want to take the chance? I wouldn't. You'll definitely want to pray on it (alternating Thursdays 4am-5am only, of course).

  • "Maintain consistent contact with your family." -- Since most secular colleges block the phone lines, mail service, and internet traffic between campus and known Christian residences, expect this will be a challenge. But that's why you have gone off to college, right? To embrace new challenges?

  • The next one is no fun at all:
    Don’t become preachy ... Just because you’re living a certain way, it doesn’t mean all of your friends should live the same way. Don’t take the holier-than-thou approach to being a Christian. Your friends are imperfect and so are you. Accept them for who they are, and they’ll accept you for who you are.
    Sure, maybe -- if they're Christian and straight and so on. Otherwise, what would be the point of that? Am I right or am I right? Also: notice it says don't become preachy. If you're already preachy upon entering secular college, you're grandfathered in! Sweet!

  • Read this one carefully:
    Enjoy your science classes ... After all, college is supposed to broaden your horizons. Although you may disagree with what is being said in regard to evolution, you should sit back, relax and enjoy the lesson. You don’t have to accept it as fact, so unless your professor or classmates attack creationism, don’t attempt to make it into a religious discussion – it would disrupt the class.
    You certainly don't have to accept Bible-contradicting facts! You already know before entering college that scientific facts are solid, stubborn things unless and until they contradict something you consider interesting or important, and to allow college to pry that idea from your head would be to sully your reputation and, naturally, guarantee you an acre plot in hell with an immortal mule that only knows how to torture you.

  • "Stand up for your faith" -- This one means, of course, to examine everything you see and experience for its martyrdom potential. Suppose you go to a philosophy class and they seem to be discussing texts you know are not in the Old Testament or New Testament. Or suppose you wake up one Sunday morning to find that most of the cars in the student parking lots are still there, indicating that no one has driven off to undertake student swing by [sic] at one of those nearby churches. Can such things mean anything other than that you are being cruelly persecuted for your faith, just as the Bible said you would be?
Have fun!


Sheldon said...

"If you are discovered praying at other times, it's academic probation, and in some secular colleges, outright expulsion."

And what a total bullshit lie! Didn't the Lord have something to say about that?

Dale said...

Sheldon, The Lord had so much to say about so many things. To quote noted theologian Reverend Lovejoy, "Have you ever read this thing? Technically we're not allowed to go to the bathroom."

Reuben said...

Funny stuff, Dale. Please continue to grant wide berths to the words might, possibly, conceivably, and so forth.