This past week I traveled home for spring break — about 45 minutes from Fresno, Calif. in a small town named Lemoore. The population of Lemoore is about 45,000 people with cows still outnumbering humans. The bovine smell and perhaps the naval air station there are the only things people might know about Lemoore. However, despite the lack of things to do, home is home, and home is a pleasant place to be.
I was happier than a bird with a French fry to be home for break. I got to sleep in as long as I wanted to, eat lots of (free) food, play Mario Kart with my sister and boyfriend and had plenty of free time to work on homework. It was great to see family and friends while living a carefree life for a few days.
However, when I am home, I always have one problem — I tend to get out of my routine of reading my Bible and spending time with God.
When I forget to read my Bible and talk to God I feel a little guilty. It is hard to juggle a busy, college schedule and focus on God as the center of the mix. Striving for personal holiness in the midst of a hectic life as a college student is a problem that sometimes Christians will not admit to. No one wants to admit that they are not as holy as they seem.
Sometimes my boyfriend and I will joke around about who is holier, saying “I am holier because I memorized a verse today.” We will laughingly counter each other by saying we memorized the whole chapter or the whole book. While our joking is all in fun, sometimes the holiness competition is a Christian’s main game.
I have experienced people who have to be the person speaking up in Sunday school by bringing up their deepest theological thoughts on every topic. There are Christians who set their Bibles on the table when people come over so their Christian friends will notice. There is even a phenomenon in the Christian community called “Jesus Juking,” a holier-than-thou Christian suddenly throwing a comment about Jesus into a conversation to make themselves sound holier. Sometimes I struggle not to put a Christian public relations spin on my life instead just simply living for God.
The reality is, we all struggle to be like Christ the way we ought to be. We can admit to this struggle and aid each other by being accountable to one another for it. I continue to strive for personal holiness in God’s spirit while understanding my own and others’ failures to completely match up to the mark.