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I came to the end

I really should be in bed right now, as I'm sick with a virus and having the week off school. I have been spending most of my time in bed. However, I've been planning to post something on this topic on this day for a while, and I can't resist!

For you have trusted in your own wickedness;
You have said, ‘No one sees me’;
Your wisdom and your knowledge have warped you;
And you have said in your heart,
‘I am, and there is no one else besides me.’
Isaiah 47:10

Today is the year anniversary of the completion of the last exam for my Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and Journalism. It would perhaps have been more aptly called a Bachelor of Arts in humanism, with majors in feminism, post-modernism, and Marxism. The topics I have mentioned seemed to form a large part of nearly every unit I took.

For the first few years, I found the continual attacks on my Christian faith at university deeply disturbing. I was a new Christian with many other troubles in my life. I had previously been exposed to the pain of many sins through the experience of friends. I had also experienced the pain and consequences of my own rebellion. However, being exposed whole disciplines devoted to explaining, justifying, and propagating such rebellion was a new experience.

I quickly discovered that my mother’s teaching about the way worldly philosophies oppose God’s truth was correct, even though I had long scorned her wisdom. As Isaiah 47:10 says, it is possible for “wisdom” and “knowledge” apart from Christ to warp people, not lead them toward truth. Without faith, people soon find more and more ways to justify unbelief and to scorn God. They trust in their own wickedness, and see man as the centre of history and thought. The idea that ‘I am, and there is no one else besides me’ (Isaiah 47:10) is a blasphemous twist of the truth that “I am the LORD, and there is no other’ (Isaiah 45:6).

During my early university years, I chose some of my subjects based on how opposed they were to my Christian faith. I loved English at the Christian school I attended for three years from grades 10 – 12, so I had intended to major in English at university. However, the way we expected to analyse every text through the lenses of aboriginal studies, or feminism, or another ism, destroyed the pleasure for me. Lecturers would often make disparaging comments about Christianity.

Around half way through my second year at university, I became less sensitive to attacks on Christianity. I also did not worry so much if I did not have something great to say when issues impinging upon Christianity were raised. I still spoke out, but did not feel the same pressure to always have something to say. Lecturers could call Christianity “rubbish” and it would not hurt at all. When an English teacher read explicit sexual poetry during a lecture, it was not even surprising.

One of the few things that managed to shock me during my fourth year at university was a poem presented in a writing class. We critiqued each other’s poems in this class. A young woman, who always arrived heavily made up, presented a poem that was an explicit description of prostitution. She then told us that it was about herself. Jesus’ teaching on how to treat prostitutes suddenly seemed more real than ever before.

University was not all bad. There were many things to be grateful for. Each week I attended the Christian group and heard great talks on the Bible. The preacher worked through whole books of the Bible. I was also able to socialise with other Christians. In third year, I began a pro-life group on campus and we were able to hold seminars and discussion meetings. We also held a stall on clubs and societies day. Some classes also had enjoyable or useful aspects. In Political Science I enjoyed learning about different political systems, history, geography, and political theory. Journalism taught me many writing skills. I also appreciated learning to interview people.

It took me four and a half years to complete my degree. I found it difficult to study with constant back pain, so I studied part time. I lived at home, which was a blessing. At my graduation, I knew only two people. Many of those I had met at university graduated before me, as the degree is only three years full time. One of the people I knew was the woman who’d told us she was a prostitute. We talked about how exciting it was to graduate, and the journeys we’d taken to get there.

I am not sure if doing a degree was the best thing for me to do with those four and a half years. I’ve certainly enjoyed life more, and learnt more too, since finishing. Teaching young children is a great learning curve! I have also begun new hobbies, and pursued my own reading and writing interests. However, I know that in God’s providence my Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and Journalism was not wasted. If nothing else, it has made me a stronger person with clearer ideas about what I believe. I am grateful that God led me through it, and by his grace I came to the end.

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