Master’s was my last choice. Not only was it my last choice, but it was the only choice I tried to run away from.
I have been around this school my entire life. I was born and raised in the Santa Clarita Valley. I grew up going to Placerita Bible Church, which is next to Masters, for the first seventeen years of my life. My parents were involved in the college group, my dad is an adjunct professor at Master’s, my mom would eventually work here for a period of time, and both my siblings went to the college. I cannot remember a time that I didn’t know of Master’s.
It always seemed like an option to go here. Then, my sophomore year of high school, I lost my mom to cancer. It was then I began chasing the wrong things for comfort. When it came time to choose a college, I was determined to get away from the school so familiar to me. I gave plenty of reasons but the truth was I didn’t want the spiritual accountability.
As the Lord had it, all my attempts to go to a different school utterly failed. So August 17, 2013, I reluctantly came to WOW (Week of Welcome) Saturday, with every intention to transfer as soon as possible.
The transition was rough. I faked my way to fit in and my heart was at war with itself. Then, one night, I had a conversation with my Resident Assistant (RA) that permanently changed my life. We chatted and gave bits of our life stories before eventually sharing our full testimonies with one another. Towards the end, she told me she had been praying for me the past two years. She had gone to Outreach Week with my brother back in 2011 and he had given a prayer request for me. She was faithful to fulfill that request.
I was stunned, thrown off guard and absolutely bewildered. Here was a girl, whom I had never met, who had been praying for me for two years. There was nothing I had ever been faithful enough to pray about for two whole years. She didn’t know if she would ever meet me, let alone that I would end up on her wing. And, yet, she petitioned the Lord on my behalf.
It was a gracious smack in the face. God had me here, exactly where I was, on that exact wing, in that exact dorm for a reason. Why was I fighting? If I was simply willing to let go, trust and submit, there would be so much the Lord could do.
God broke me that night.
It was a turning point. Since then, my life has been radically different. I have been involved in the Theatre Arts program at Master’s from that first semester on. I built solid friendships that I still have today. My sophomore year I went through the Israel Bible Extension program (IBEX) and spent three months studying in the Holy Land. My junior year I became an RA. My senior year, as an RA again, I have had the privilege of serving under Resident Director Annelise Wright. She is that same person who was my RA freshman year. In total, some of the sweetest moments have been created here.
In looking back, the temptation would be to say that it has all been rainbows and sunshine and The Master’s University is the best place on earth. It’s not. Some semesters have been brutal. They have presented some of the hardest trials I’ve ever gone through. I have lived around and gone to school with about 1,000 other fallen beings. I have sinned and been sinned against. Master’s, as shocking as it may be, is not perfect.
Yet, the Lord has used this university in amazing ways. I have been given the foundational understanding of what it is to be a believer. In spite of my selfish desires, times of idolatry and impatience with fellow believers, God has worked. He has taught me who He is through the work of His Spirit in my life. He has shown me the preciousness of His Word. He has displayed the importance of the church. He has revealed my dire need for absolute dependence on Him. He has kept His treasure in this jar of clay so that His surpassing power would only be attributed to Him and never to me.
My prayer for the school is that it would keep Christ at the center, as it has already done for 90 years. That it would be focused on how we are presenting the gospel, both to the world and to each other. I pray this school would be unified, under the sole basis of the gospel, no matter the dorm, state of origin, race, gender, sport, upbringing, etc. For if we have the gospel in common, we have everything in common. For His glory, and His glory alone.