Ask yourself, what is your Christian community? Is it your church? Your family or friends? Maybe a combination of the three? Here at Summit Semester, we students and staff make up our Christian community. Each individual puts forth what he or she has to offer, and it adds to the strong community that we have already formed just 2 and a half weeks into our semester. That is one of the most meaningful and encouraging things for me to witness.
Micah Metzger here. Youngest of 9 children, born and bred in the good ol’ state of Utah. As you may know, Utah is filled with Mormons, and the culture is largely influenced by Mormonism. That being said, it was difficult staying a faithful Christian under the influences of friends and their parents. Not only are you looked down on for being a Christian, we had the added distinction of being homeschooled (those kids are ALWAYS weirdoes). During my Christian walk, I had the help of a few of my siblings, my parents, and a few elders at my church to encourage and teach me. I never had any Christian friends and I never got much out of the teaching or relationships at my church (except the aforementioned elders). Not surprisingly then, I was looking forward to the Christian influence and community that Semester brings with it. I had many built up expectations and hopes for our group and the individuals I would meet. I was not disappointed.
I have been blown away by the maturity of the people here, as well as their love for the Lord and drive to glorify him. And that right there is the root of the group: Glorifying God. We all come from very different backgrounds, states, countries (I’m referring to the Canadians and Texans, of course) churches, and social groups. We all have our own crazy personalities, interests, talents, and lifestyles, but we have a common goal. To glorify God in all that we do. This shows in how we interact with each other, work together, talk together, and how we treat others, the property, and the tools at our disposal. We have had to set our own rules as a group. These rules stem from a Christ-like attitude of respecting each other and worshiping God in how we go about our daily, individual lives. Everyone has a great attitude towards work, which is far from normal in our society. This attitude comes from wanting to worship God in our work and to be good stewards of what God has given us. Another way we pursue worshipping God is in our conversation. We learn and converse throughout class and Bible readings, but we also get caught up in deep, intellectual topics raised in class. We talk as a group, as smaller groups during meals and free time, or during hikes and camping. But, all of our conversations are fueled by our thirst for Truth. We want knowledge and wisdom and we find that in the Word of God. We strive to uncover more and more truth from the Bible, longing to know why we believe what we believe. This comes from both questioning our faith and former beliefs, and hearing other’s opinions and beliefs. While a dangerous thing to do, within our community it has been helpful as well as healthy, for we are held to the high standard of basing our beliefs solely on what Scripture says. I am humbled and grateful that God has given me this wonderful community to be a part of and to grow in, adding my input and helping others out as they in turn aid me in my knowledge and walk with the Lord.
This is just one thing I have come to love about Semester. Another is our location. We are right in the heart of gorgeous Colorado (God’s favorite state, sorry Texas), surrounded by the amazing scenery of woods, wildlife, and waterfalls. We have taken a few hikes, camped out a couple times, and seen many spectacular sights. One experience that will stick with me forever is a camping trip we took last weekend. It was about 3 hours away, and we were able to experience driving through a variety of Colorado terrain and see some of the vegetation turning color. We made camp, enjoyed a fire and good conversation, and then the rain set in. It was a wet night for all, but come morning, everyone was happy, smiling, and ready to take on the day. We broke camp and drove to the Great Sand Dunes of Colorado, where we began hiking. What a sight! Miles of sand, forming hills, ravines, and mini-mountains. Climbing sand is tough work and very exhausting, but everyone enjoyed climbing hills and then running down them at full speed, adrenaline pumping, and hoping to God we wouldn’t face plant in the sand. We made it about halfway up (heading towards the highest peak), when a storm came and rained us out, making us turn around and run down the sides of the sand hills. Disappointed we weren’t able to reach the top and enjoy our lunches on the peak, we were nonetheless very thankful for the opportunity to hike that amazing country, get some great pictures, and thoroughly enjoy ourselves and being with each other.
Day by day, we grow closer as a group, we discover more and more about each other during one-on-one conversations, and we also grow in our faith, our Lord, and our intellect. This is our life, this is our Christian Community. We are Semester 2014.
Micah Metzger joins Summit Semester from the great state of Utah. Currently a student at Salt Lake Community College, Micah is pursuing studies in Criminal Justice. While there are several different career paths Micah is considering, the overarching goal connecting them is a desire to bring Christ’s kingdom to the lives of those around him. While at Summit Semester, Micah is looking forward to developing strong relationships with his classmates and deepening his understanding of what it looks like to live life well. During his free time, Micah enjoys sports, getting into the outdoors, and good conversations.