Looking Back

As we enter into the last day of classes, right before we (Hope students) hit exam week, I have had a moment to breathe and thus this thought has hit me: “This semester, my 3rd semester in college, is coming to end.” What?!?! Wasn’t it just the other day that I got here as part of the orientation staff? How can this be? What have I even done? What have I accomplished? I realize though, that I have done a lot and accomplished stuff along the way. In this realization, I ask myself the question that I believe is a vital question in life: “What have I learned from this past time period?”


Well I have learned a lot of things, but the things that stick at to me the most is what I have learned about myself. I’ve said it before, and I will say it again: So much of college is self-discovery. I thought I learned it all my freshman year; what else more to me was there to know? Maybe in a stagnant world, that would be true, but the world I live in is ever changing, so there is always something new for me to learn about myself. So what have I learned about myself this semester? Many things, but here are a few:

1). There is such a thing as being too busy. If you haven’t noticed, I love to stay busy with everything that I do and everything that I am involved with. Well, that “business” caught up to me this year. I know I am a being that easily gets restless, so staying busy is good for me. It is not good for me when I don’t have enough time to bring my soul to rest. When I am not able to do the things that I need in my life such as prayer time, exercise, true intentional time with others, then I become over-worn. That state of mind does not put me in a good place. Instead of business putting me in a good place, it can take over like a disease and really affect me. There is such a thing as being too busy.

2). The nature of doubt. I have gone through a lot  with doubt this semester, specifically speaking, with my faith life. I never disbelieved that Jesus was the Son of God and that He loved me and everybody, but everything in between that was very cloudy and unsteady. At first I had a lot of anxiety that I was so doubtful, but over time I came to embrace it and then discovered so much more about it. I discovered that I am a person whose faith is founded on doubt. That doesn’t have to be a bad thing. When I hear something, my first reaction is to question it, and thus begin a path to self learning and discovery. That can help me deeper enrich my faith. But you know what? It can be a bad thing, and I let it be that in my life. I was so full of doubt and so quick to do it, that I allowed no opportunity for something to make an impact. My doubt my me so closed hearted and unwilling to change. I let the doubt take control. But what I needed to do was learn to doubt my doubts. The nature of doubt is complex and beautiful, but it can become something that holds me down; it is a fine fine line.

3). It may be cliché, but… #blessed. Yep. I said it. I am so fortunate to go to the school that I go to, to have the friends and community that I have, and to constantly be swarmed with endless fulfilling opportunities. Though I can say this semester has had its challenges as it sometimes took a lot out of me as I was discovering “me,” I can by no means forget the blessings that have happened as well. Thank you, God, for this place and the people.

For more about me, follow me on twitter @hopejohnluke17 or on Instagram at johnlukehawkins. Until next time!

Published by John Luke Hawkins

My name is John Luke Hawkins and I am a sophomore at Hope. I am from the small agriculture town of Tipton, Indiana. I love my new Home sweet Hope. Currently, I double majoring in Communications and Religion. When I am not doing homework (too often), I might be working one of my jobs as a Library Worker, Overnight Host, or Student Blogger. If I am not doing homework or work, I am probably doing something with my numerous organizations that I am involved in such as Dance Marathon, Gospel Choir, Intramurals, Nykerk, and a small group. If I come up with free time amongst all that, then I like to run, free dance, self-reflect, go on adventures, and spend time with friends. Hope College has really helped me discover who I am. Here it is in seven words: energetic, organized, contemplative, determined, silly, social, and intentional.

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