When you get to Cedarville, you will find that when Dr. White gets up in chapel, you can count on him talking about at least one of two things: getting involved in your local church or Chick-fil-A. While he does make many references to his love for “the Lord’s chicken,” you will also hear him pour out his heart for the local church and challenge us to look for ways to get involved in a church plant after we graduate from Cedarville. But in the meantime, as a Cedarville student, how do we prioritize getting involved in a church when we already benefit from chapel five days a week on top of discipleship groups, hall prayer nights, worship nights, and a Bible minor?
Find a Church!
You will find that the first several Sundays of your first semester are probably going to be filled with church-hopping, as you go from church to church analyzing their worship, size, preaching, theology, and community. Finding a church takes longer for some people, and others may find a church they love during the first week! I can attest that there are MANY different biblically and theologically sound churches in the Cedarville area! Depending on your background with church, you may have specific preferences to different worship or preaching styles. If you ever need assistance in finding a church, you can utilize Cedarville’s online “find-a-church” search engine or contact a Church Relations staff member!
Don’t have a car on campus? Don’t let that stop you from seeking out a good church and fellowshipping in person! Get rides with friends or your RA or make a list of the churches that offer a morning bus for college students to get a ride for the service! You will also be able to scope out different churches at the Involvement Fair at Cedarville each fall.
Get to Know People!
My first three years at Cedarville, I went through the motions of attending a church as a consumer and never a contributor. Each Sunday I walked into church (usually a few minutes late), headed up to the balcony, enjoyed the service and found encouragement from it, left the balcony, and walked out of the church. My strategy was to lay low, worship, listen, and get to Chuck’s (the campus’ dining hall) before the Sunday lunch rush.
I waited until my senior year to even meet people at the church I was faithfully attending! I joined a community group with a friend and slowly started to meet new people. My friends and I began sitting on the main floor of the auditorium to become more engaged and to get to know couples and families before and after the sermon. This has changed the way that I have viewed the importance of the church for college students! Don’t wait until your senior year to leave the balcony, like I did! Dive right into your church and experience the joy that comes from personal fellowship with other believers.
Serve and Get Involved Using Your Hobbies and Talents!
Once I started meeting more people in my church, I began to start feeling convicted about my lack of service, contribution, and involvement. Our responsibility as Christians to serve in the church does not take a four-year pause during college, although we may temporarily be away from our home churches. I encourage you to go out of your way to find needs that you can meet! Whether that be in the sound booth, on stage leading worship, in the nursery or youth group or as a part-time administrative assistant in the church office, look for ways to combine your skills with things you enjoy and use them to serve in your church!
Romans 12:3-8 says that we all have different gifts and functions to add to the church. Whether you have been serving in your church for years or you just barely started going to church, the Lord has given each of us gifts to serve well for His glory, both in the church and outside of it!
Majoring in Strategic Communication, Class of 2022
Where I’m from: Harleysville, PA
Favorite Class: Old Testament with Dr. Miller
Go to Rinnova Order: Hot Chocolate with whipped cream!