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Editor's journey

Give me mercy ... or give me an F

SPRINGFIELD, MO. — A friend in college was notorious for failing to turn in class assignments on time. Week after week he cried for mercy from professors, inventing the wildest excuses imaginable:

My girlfriend was taken to the hospital last night.
My uncle died.
My computer blew up.
My boss made me work the midnight shift.
My doctor thinks I have something serious.
My girlfriend broke up with me; I’m a wreck.
My friend has my paper; he was in a car accident.

This student wasn’t a follower of Jesus Christ, so he felt no shame in lying. He had an innocent face and frequently used it to his benefit. His IQ was off the charts, but he preferred drinking beer to doing homework.

One professor at this secular university finally saw through my friend’s charade and gave him a failing grade.

The following semester he made some drastic changes. His schedule no longer revolved around parties. And he began spending more time in the library than he did the local pub.

“What’s up with you — you’re like a different guy?” I asked.

“It’s time to get serious. I don’t want to be working at a fast-food joint my whole life,” he replied. “Just having fun won’t buy me the sports car I want.”

I lost track of him after college, but it wouldn’t surprise me if he owns a few sports cars by now. Money became his motivation.

Some students enter college to have a good time. For them, a diploma is secondary to fun. Others take the opportunity to better themselves academically.

Although college is an enjoyable experience and intended to give you needed skills for your career choice, it’s also a time to get serious about making your life count for Christ. That should be your motivation. God doesn’t want you to approach college with a “just-get-by” attitude. He wants these years to be significant, so you can become everything He wants you to be. In other words: No excuses. No pleas for mercy. No time to waste. Go for it.

Hal Donaldson

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