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Why I Moved to College Without Knowing my Roommate

Her name is Naomi. She was a Journalism student and two years ahead of me. That's all I knew about my roommate, and that was enough.

          In the months leading up to the big freshman migration to college, I watched countless girls put endless energy into finding "the perfect roommate." The college even provided a website that would help connect students with each other who might get along and enjoy sharing their college life together. On the freshman Facebook page, all these future students interacted with each other, sharing all the hopes, dreams, and desires they had for their future roommate.

          I could never be someone's "perfect roommate" and I could not dare putting that expectation on someone else. I could only imagine the volatility in a relationship that would result if founded on such unattainable plans.

          So I decided to go to college without knowing my roommate.

          Yes, I chose this, and yes, I went with the perspective of "I'll get along with anybody." But, nevertheless, if being this kind of roommate was up to me, I'd still fail. There was still a reason I could go against the norm and move into a room with a student I knew nothing about.

          My choice was an act of trust in God's grace and sovereignty. It was because of God's grace that I was even be able to walk into my new room without anxiety over the unknown. It was because of God's grace that I was even able to click on the little button that said, "select room," not having a clue of who I'd spend the next 9ish months of my life with. I trusted that God was sovereign over the relationship that He put me in. I trusted that every interaction, situation, and challenge to come were still under His sovereign power.

          Choosing your own roommate is not wrong, but do you recognize that you are still under God's sovereignty?  Your assessing the possibilities, analyzing future events, and discerningly making a roommate selection does not make you the god. Do you still trust Him who will forever be in control of your college experience and your relationships with others?

          Now at the end of the year, I watch many of those around me frantically try to find a new roommate for next year because things didn't go the way they thought it would. I've seen many relationships pulled so tight that many eventually snapped. I fear that many of these issues started before the first day of classes even happened, and I believe that the root of many of these problems is the lie that we can meet impossible expectations. Switching roommates isn't wrong, but is it because you're trying to be god, trying to be "perfect," trying to expect your roommate to be "perfect?"

          I did not pick a random room to let chance fall where it may.

          I did trust God to give me the roommate that I needed this year. I don't think that God blessed me for walking into the unknown. I think He blessed me for trusting in His sovereignty. He gave me Naomi. And, let me say, that Naomi has been a great roommate, and I would not even have known to look for someone like her.

          Are you headed to college for the first time, or perhaps looking for a new roommate? Do you trust God to continue being sovereign over your life and future rooming situation? Do you tell Him that? Do you thank Him for being sovereign? Praying for someone you don't know can be hard, but do you do it? Do you pray for your own character to be ready and willing to learn and grow with the new challenge of being a roommate yourself?

 ~ Alyson


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