8 months ago, I visited 3 different schools in Chicago, which is a 7 hour drive from my house.
I liked 1 of them, a lot.
So I decided to apply to that school, and I sent in my application 1 week ago.
(I also have 1 transcript to send in still…)
Anyhow, I took a 3 day trip down there – getting back to my house about an hour ago – to get a better idea of what this place is all about. There were 0 students on campus when I went there 8 months ago, so the environment wasn’t accurate to what it usually is.
This visit, I got to spend a night in the dorms with 2 incredible freshmen: Miram and Kate. On my way into this visit, my level of certainty that North Park is the place for me was pretty high. Still, there was a part of me that needed confirmation that everything about it fit who I am, who I want to me, and where God wants me.
I’d never met an NPU student, just heard that people love it and make lifelong friends there. I wanted to know how they spend their free time, if they like their roommates, if they love Jesus, if they like their teachers, if they’ve ever gotten lost on campus, etc….
And, my goodness, did God provide the perfect hosts for me? yes, He did.
Not only are Miriam and Kate from Minnesota, but they are Christians. They’re not just Christians – they’re ACTIVE ones. Believe it or not, even though they’ve only been at NPU for 2 months, they’ve already started a ministry through their dorm room.
I should mention that I don’t even think their dorm was 10 feet wide. It’s in a building that is round, so each room is shaped like a piece of pie. Not a very big piece of pie either. And despite that, every Tuesday night, they cram 20-30 people in their dorm for a worship service called 5:08, based on two things: their room number (yep, you guessed it, it’s 508!) and Ephesians 5:8 which says, “For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light.”
They also have coffee mugs hanging all over the wall of their dorm.
Sound random? (I mean, I think it’d be a cool decoration, even if that was it’s only purpose.) It’s not.
Every one who comes to hang out in their room, whether for 5:08 or just during 1 of the many hours that their door is wide open to welcome people it, gets to decorate a mug (bought at the thrift store down the block) that they can use whenever they come into 508.
that was the first thing that made me want to be a part of the NPU community. If there are more of those type people here, SIGN ME UP!
Then there was the fact that we had a fire drill at 8:40 in the morning.
(oh, wait, that wasn’t what I meant to say… even though it was quite the valuable experience that I hold on to in my heart.)
Then there were the 5+ times that I thought to myself I really, really, really love it here and meant it so much that I almost cried for joy.
I’ve found my fit. Or, rather, God put me into the NPU mix, where I belong. I fit in the urban atmosphere, just minutes from downtown. I fit in the Jesus-culture. I fit in the liberal arts aspect. I fit in the beautiful, peaceful library. I fit with people who love to learn. I fit with people who come from diverse backgrounds and don’t follow patterns of life – people who realize that God works outside of the boxes we make for Him.
another beautiful experience: on my tour, they took us to a local chocolate shop where they gave us free chocolate. It’s called Beijo de Choclat which means “kiss of chocolate.”