Finding God on Gannon’s campus

Fall break is over and we find ourselves in the middle of the busy semester as soon as we return.

Many times in life it seems as if we go from one place to another without much time to appreciate the gifts that are around us and the gifts that we are to others.

The very reason we are in relationship with each other is to know God better and to serve others, and that can be blurred by our busy life.

I have to take time and remember that in those difficult moments, when it seems that the roof is collapsing, that these are exactly the moments of grace I need to be a better person.

A priest friend of mine told me that God is present in the M&Ms of life – the miracles and the messes.

I don’t always see that and it takes the people around me to show me the reality of that statement.

Perhaps there have been moments when you, too, have thought that the roof was caving in and that there will be no person who will understand what you are going through; the times when even the ones you love most leave your side or hurt you tremendously because they don’t understand or feel as if they have failed.

Where is God? If he truly loved me why would he allow this to happen?  This is the crossroad that can bring a person to destruction or make them unshakeable.

This road and these questions have been traveled and asked for as long as man has been around.

The difficult moments in life that we all encounter can be overcome by stopping and seeing the gifts around us and the gifts that we are to others.

I see where God is in those moments He is in my friends and family who support me.

I prayed Isaiah 49:14-21 this week with a friend who has encountered some very difficult moments in his life.

The storms of life, however rough and turbulent they may be, will be overcome with faith.

The faith that there is a God who loves us so much that he says “though a mother forget her baby, or show no compassion for the child in her womb, even these may forget, yet I will never forget you.”

This speaks to us as we return to classes and may be distracted by problems at home.  Have faith, trust in the God who loves you and give it to him.

The future you have here at Gannon and the whole rest of your life is formed by this trust.

Being able to let go of those situations and events you have no control over and giving them to God frees you so you can study and have a healthy student life.

The mission of the servant can be you and me.  The message of Isaiah can be you and me made manifest right here on campus.

This message says that no matter what the people next to you are going through, have been through, or are about to go through, they are so important that we will never leave their side.

The mission to be there with our fellow students and faculty in the midst of their struggles brings the kingdom of God to Gannon in a deeper way. It says that we live what we say we believe.

That may sound very noble, and it is; now do it for someone you don’t like, that has hurt you, or perhaps is an outcast.

That is the test of Christian principles and that is the message of Isaiah, the unconditional response to the one who loved us first in those who may be so beaten and bloodied by sin and pain, that like Jesus standing before Pilate we may ask, “what is truth?”

The image of Christ in them and in us may be so unrecognizable that there seems to be no hope or reason to care anymore.

Don’t give up, and may we always have the courage to stand up for the poor and outcast of our community at Gannon and let that spread through the world that we may be truly good.


[email protected]