SHE comes clean
By April of 2008, I was mentally checked out and the trees that I could see through the open windows of my English class seemed just as good as a new release on Netflix. When I took a small break from my daydreaming I glanced around the room to see the majority of my classmates just as interested in the amateur doodles they were creating on their homework assignment or the rhythmic beat of the clock on the wall counting down the bell. This was before I had my WebMD medical license, but I knew very well that I had Senioritis.
I had actually had it for the last 5 months, since I found out what college I would be attending. I had calculated what grade minimums I needed in my classes to maintain my GPA and I answered enough class discussion questions to get my participation credit, so I could back to my summer house in La-La Land. I was mentally spent and nothing besides Congratulations to the Class of 2008 would have brought me back to reality.
Despite my clear cries for graduation, I doubt anyone noticed. Why would they? I was still an honors students with a high GPA and involved in several extracurriculars. I was seemingly undetectable on any radar by doing the maximum of the minimum.
At times, our personal Christian walk can look very similar to this. You can easily go down a weekly list:
Go to church
Raise your hands and/or clap according to the directives of the worship leader
Lean over and tell your neighbor another directive from the Pastor like “Isn’t God good?”
Share a scripture on Facebook
Tell a few people some stories about some Christian thing you did that day
Pray before your food
Read a couple scriptures every couple of days
You get the point.
Our Christian lives can become so routine that our relationship with God turns into a rulebook. If I can do these things I can at least say I tried. We can be caught battling a bad case of Spiritual Senioritis and not even know it. To most people you look like a star Christian: perfect church attendance, rapid recitation of a scripture verse for any situation, and involved in some form ministry. But all the while you’re living comatose on the inside. Simply going through the movements still being tossed and turned by life. No matter how much you may fool everyone around you, you can’t fool God.
"I the LORD search the heart and examine the mind, to reward each person according to their conduct, according to what their deeds deserve."
Unlike my teachers, God knows when I’m faking it. He knows when I shortcut the “quiet time” that I had with Him that was mostly conducted in and out of sleep cycles because I waited to complete everything else on my checklist and gave him the remaining 20 minutes of my day. He knows when I’m quickly reciting a scripted prayer over my food because I’m more focused on eating the burger then thanking Him for it. He knows when my heart is breaking so loudly on the inside that I really can’t even hear the words the choir is singing, but I’m just swaying to keep from crumbling on the outside.
The comforting news is that it happens to a lot of people. The bad news is that not enough people share that. So the end result is that too many believers live lives in internal isolation wondering why they feel so separated. When we live life without accountability to those around us and even more so to God we live lives void of joy found in a purposeful relationship with Him because we simply are not willing to admit it. One of the many wonderful characteristics of God is that He knows our pains even when we cannot form the words to explain.
"In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans."
So shout, cry, or journal to God about the areas of your life where you feel like you are simply going through the motions. Allow Him to not only renew those areas but restore what Spiritual Senioritis had destroyed.
What does or has your Spiritual Senioritis looked like?
In what areas of your life are you simply just going through the motions?