Finding God on Gannon’s campus: Unexpected surprises show how God works in lives of students


My boots were slipping on ice and I was attempting to not fall flat on my face as the feeling of dread surrounded me.
Winter had come early.
Waking up early on Saturday morning, I opened my door and saw the multiple inches of snow coating my deck.
As a first-time renter off campus, I was ill prepared and the only tool my roommate and I could find was the ice scraper in her car.
So, wrapping myself in my long-forgotten winter coat, I decided to walk down State Street to gather my thoughts over a coffee in Starbucks.
As stressed students, many of us may find that we question why God has us going down a certain path.
That is the exact feeling that fills my heart at this time.
All of the ideas that I had for my life were being tossed about as I struggled to find the energy to just get out of bed in the morning.
But God works in very strange ways.
Sitting at a long table in that Starbucks, a girl sat across from me because the other tables were taken.
As we sat in silence, reading pages in our textbooks, I happened to glance over and see that she was studying a prep book for the PANCE, a national physician assistant certification exam.
I couldn’t help but be curious and I asked if she was in PA school.
She was actually finishing up schooling and was on her final rotation at UPMC Hamot for emergency medicine.
Before long, we were swapping stories about studying and I was listening to all of her advice for the long journey that lies ahead.
I walked into that Starbucks downtrodden, cursing the weather, but in the warmth of that coffee shop, I discovered a friend from miles away who gave me some peace of mind that I truly needed.
Maybe it was a coincidence that I happened to go to that place for the first time in months and sit at the exact spot where she would.
Or maybe God played a role in it.
As adulthood becomes more evident and I cannot run away from it, I find that God plays a large role in the inner workings of all of my days.
He guides us in ways that we are not even aware, providing us with a sense of hope.
As Proverbs 3:5 says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.”
As much as I try to keep it all together, including not falling on the ice coating the sidewalks, I should know that there is something much bigger going on in my life.
I believe that all around this campus and continuing out into our lives beyond Gannon, we will discover the moments that God enriched our lives without us even knowing.
I expected to find more knowledge in that coffee shop as I sipped my coffee.
But that one cup of coffee helped me find the gentle presence of God.
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