I love this time of year. It marks the beginning of the end of summer. Signs start to appear that foretell fall’s imminent arrival. The early mornings are now cooler (which I like) and darker (which I don’t like) than they were in July. This past July broke the record for the hottest month ever in the United States and I couldn’t be happier for it to be over.
You may think I’m crazy to be glad for summer’s end, and perhaps this time of year delivers the exact opposite emotion to your doorstep. But to me, it means the end of the heat and humidity.
It also marks the return of students to the campus where I work.
As a child, I loved the seemingly-endless summer days filled with bike rides and swimming in the river and writing stories and playing with our animals. But even then, I had to admit the start of a new school year invigorated me.
I loved the smell of crisp new textbooks, buying a new outfit every fall, picking out school supplies, the excitement of wondering whether I’d like my teachers and my classes. To some, the unknown brings fear, but to me, it means thrill and anticipation.
Spring is the season of new life. Trees and flowers that appeared to be dead return to full vibrancy, pointing us to Christ’s life conquering death. But autumn also seems like a resurrection of sorts to me.
A new school year means new beginnings. A chance for a fresh start. A do-over.
Freshmen are arriving today, full of trepidation and excitement. Their values and life goals will be shaped while they’re in college; their possibilities are limitless and yet to be written.
I wonder which of the freshmen will be introduced to Christ through the Cru students. Who will grow in their relationship with Jesus? Which ones will respond to His call to help reach the world?
Our campus has been in the throes of death, or at the least, in hibernation since graduation in May. This week it is springing to life. Students are beginning to return. Rather than the sound of birds singing as in the springtime, I hear laughter again.
And it sounds beautiful.