“Martha, do you trust me?” God asked me this question. Of course I trusted him, but I was curious to know what he was asking. I had planned on joining Greek life at Samford University, but I knew God was asking me not to rush. I was upset, confused, and conflicted. The next day I spent absolute solitude with the Lord. Why did he not want me doing something that would be such a great way to meet friends?
As I was talking to one of my sweet friends, God spoke through her to tell me something. He was showing me that I could only see one season while he could see all seasons of my life. I didn’t know why, but I trusted that he always knows best, even when it doesn’t feel the best in that moment. This was my first semester of college last year.
A Call to Apply
Fast forward to winter break. My family had just moved back to North Carolina from Ohio. My older sister and her fiancé kept talking to me about a summer project they both had done while in college, City Project. While I am not one to follow in others’ footsteps, the Spirit intervened as I found myself applying a few weeks later. I knew no one in North Carolina (let alone anyone doing City Project), but as I continued to fill out the application, the fear turned into excitement. If God wants you to be a part of something, money, distance, or any other reason will not matter.
My plan was to do City Project and take what I learned back to Samford. The last day of City Project I was challenged to transfer to UNCG and be a part of what was happening for the kingdom here. I was terrified and did not fully understand, but I remembered back when the Lord asked me not to rush. I was reminded that his way is always better. So, I boldly said yes, not knowing what I was doing or what to expect.
A Call to Boldness
When I called my dad, he laughed. He was confused because I am the biggest Samford fan there is. I explained that I really felt the Lord needed me here instead of Samford. Throughout this day of processing, the biggest thing that rang true was the need to give up my dream school for the sake of the gospel. My dream school is important, but the gospel is more important.
I was obedient to the Lord’s call, took a semester off from school, and now attended the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. This is not where I thought I would be, but God has given me a desire to see the people here know him. He has given me a desire to love-on and do life with people that are not just in Alabama. City Project has given me the confidence to go out each day and ensure someone knows the good news of the gospel.
You don’t have to transfer to be obedient. You have to have your ears and eyes open to what the Spirit is doing. You have to say yes, even when you don’t know what that entails. You have to be expectant of what he could do in and through you. For some of you reading this, I hope and pray that means doing City Project this summer. Any and every college student looking to be used and stretched for the kingdom needs to take this next step. Do not wait. You don’t know if the Lord is ever going to tug on your heart again to do City Project.
Fast forward to now. The Lord has asked me to rush at UNCG. Not only is it going to be a great way to meet more girls, but it is going to be a great way to remind each and every precious girl that they have a Creator who loves them more than anyone ever could.
We do not always know what God is doing, but Romans 8:28 tells us that he is always working for the good of those who love him. Paul is reminding us that whether something good or bad is happening, God is shaping us to look more like his Son.
–Martha Swanson (MH College Leader)