What first brought you to Metro and what has helped you grow over the years as part of our community?
RK: I first attended Metro as a freshman at Temple University. I saw that there was a genuine sense of community and decided to commit. I think what helped me to grow over the years as part of the community was a desire to learn more about the Gospel and what it says about me. I began to really listen to and take in the messages preached on Sundays and started to question things in my life. As I started to question things, I had loving and wise mentors who met with me regularly to guide me in my understanding of the Gospel.
Not too long ago—at the start of the summer—you shared your testimony with the congregation at Metro. What was that process like as you prepared your testimony? What did you learn about yourself, the Gospel, and Christ?
RK: It was a great opportunity to share a general overview of the Lord’s faithfulness in my life. I started a journal at the beginning of college and still keep up in the same journal today. I started this journal because I was overwhelmed with disappointment in life and was looking to find my identity. Looking back in this journal has really helped me to track a pattern in my life of searching for identity in various places and eventually being devastated by those very things. I looked to relationships, my righteousness, and success. I found a sense of identity in all of these things but, they all lead me to work to keep them, they were all temporary, and they all eventually failed me. I learned that anything I place my identity in that is not Christ will lead me to tirelessly work and will eventually fail me. I learned that I can trust in the Lord in the darkest of circumstances because He is faithful. I see it looking back, though I did not see then. I believe that God is good, that he loves me, and that he is control of my life.
As you approach graduation and the working world, what are you hopeful about? What makes you anxious? How is the Gospel addressing both your hopes and anxieties?
RK: As college comes to end, I am anxious about several things. I am anxious about falling into a lie that I can find satisfaction in anything other than Christ. I know that after graduation, I may look to my career for a sense of worth. I know I have no life outside of Christ.
I am hopeful because I know God is faithful, He is good, and I can fully trust in His work in my life. No matter how far I stray or run away, Christ is always drawing me back to Him and I am never outside of His grace.
What advice or words of encouragement do you have for freshmen or new college students who are starting to get involved at Metro in general and with the college group ministry in particular?
RK: There are many things I would like to share, but I think two things that have really changed my connection to the people at Metro are transparency and desire for community. I’ve learned over the years that so many people are willing to listen, counsel, and walk with me, but I would often make things difficult for them. I had my guard up and kept people at a distance because of my own fear of judgement and insecurities. As I started to hear the good news of the Gospel, that I am utterly sinful but that I am completely loved by the one who matters most, I started to open up about who I really am. My brokenness was not met by judgement from the community, but was met by grace and compassion. I felt exposed and weak in sin, but found overwhelming love, joy, and peace in Christ who covers me. As I begin to put off the old self and put on the new, I know that I am weak and can’t possibly do this on my own. I am dependent on the Spirit and my community to walk with me and to hold me accountable.
How can the rest of the Metro community encourage and pray for you and others in the college group ministry?
RK: I would ask that the Metro community pray for the college group’s love for the Gospel and that Christ would become central in our lives. As a college student, there are many distractions and false urgencies that take away from what is really important. My hope and prayer for college group is that we may learn to detect the false urgencies in life and that we may turn away from those things and turn to Christ who can alone satisfy.