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Engage with Grand Canyon University's (GCU) vibrant Spiritual Life community and take a deeper look at the various ministries that are happening around the world, in your backyard and on our campus. From weekly devotionals to Chapel highlights and features that reflect God's work in the hearts of our students, staff and faculty, each article is presented by GCU's Spiritual Life team and our special guests. We hope that God will challenge and encourage you through His words and the stories about His people that inspire us all.
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By Lily Cooper
Professional Writing Major, College of Humanities and Social Sciences

“Look to the Lord and His strength; seek his face always.” – 1 Chronicles 16:11

For a good portion of my life I believed that God was only reserved for reading the Bible and church. I thought that that was the only place where you would be table to talk to Him, to hear Him and gain a relationship. High-school me thought church and the Bible were boring and just another thing to add to my day.

What I had failed to realize is that God is not just restricted to a church or a book; He’s always with you and always available to talk. You can literally encounter Him anytime and anywhere. While reading your Bible and going to church are just as equally important in themselves, there are many other ways to encounter God. Ways that will switch up your schedule and make Him seem anything but boring.

Check out some of the ways you can encounter God below:

On a Hike

Something that really helped me get into the routine of reading my Bible and getting into God’s word was to switch up where I dug into His word. I could only do my morning Bible study in my room for so long before I got sick of the view.

Hiking has helped switch things up and allowed me to get some great exercise at the same time! To this day, I will hike a trail, listening to some worship music on the way up. When I get to the top or to my destination point, I will open up my Bible and do my study there. It allowed me to go somewhere new, get exercise and enjoy God’s presence.

At a Coffee Shop

My senior year of high school my friend and I decided to meet at a coffee shop once a week in the morning for a Bible study. We got our lattes and opened up our Bibles and dug into the word. That was one of the first times I had really done a Bible study outside of my house and church and I found it refreshing. It also allowed for me to connect with friends and have deep conversations about Jesus.

The Morning Commute

Podcasts are all the rage now and for the people who have a long commute or some extra time in the car to spare, I highly recommend listening to a sermon on your phone. There are many on all platforms and so many different messages. It’s a good way to start your morning and hear new perspectives of the Bible. All without taking your eyes off the road!

You can also switch up your daily playlist with a worship playlist on your way to work or class. I have multiple kinds of worship playlists that vary from fast to slow. Whatever my mood is, I have a playlist for it and it allows me to worship God in a different way in the car. Plus, it’s all worship songs that I enjoy and get to choose so what’s not to like?

Making Art

Another recent popular thing to do is to paint in your journaling Bible. I like to read my devotion and if a word or phrase really pops out to me, I either underline it and make a note or I pull out my paints and create something on the pages. I use various types of paint from acrylic to watercolors and allow myself to get fueled by Him. In the end, I end up with a beautiful reminder of my time with God and a phrase or word from Him.

Grand Canyon University is committed to following the Lord in all circumstances. If you would like to learn more about GCU’s Christian identity and heritage or would like to read more devotionals please visit our website and check out the GCU Blog.

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By Kennedy Lane
Professional Writing Major, College of Humanities and Social Sciences

“When I called, you answered me; you greatly emboldened me.” – Psalm 138:3

Everyone has those moments where they want to fit in with the crowd. We want to be like our peers and do what they are doing. We want to have the same clothes, the same hair, the same cars. We are often afraid of being different and being our own person, instead of being afraid and trying to fit in, we should ask God to help us to be bold, and to stand out.

He Will Answer When You Call

When you are in need, do not be afraid to ask God for help. This goes for any situation. If you are feeling discouraged and pressured to fit in, ask God for help. Ask him for help in being bold and not being afraid to be yourself and to show others who you truly are, if you do this, you will shine his light to others.

Ask Him for Strength

Ask for strength, not only physically, but also mentally and emotionally. Ask him to help you through every tough situation, relationship and friendship. He is always there to give you strength. We can get so defeated by our emotions in tough situations that we do not think of asking God for help right away. If you make the effort to change this habit, you will see him changing your life for the better.

Have Courage

Do not be afraid to be courageous and be bold because the Bible tells us to do just that, Joshua 1:9 says “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.” We are always told to be strong and to have courage. What is holding you back from being your most bold and courageous self? Whatever it is, make the effort to change it to allow your true light to shine.

Grand Canyon University is committed to following the Lord in all circumstances. If you would like to learn more about GCU’s Christian identity and heritage or would like to read more devotionals please visit our website and check out the GCU Blog.

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By Lily Cooper
Professional Writing Major, College of Humanities and Social Sciences

 “Satisfy us in the morning with your steadfast love, that we may rejoice and be glad all our days.” – Psalm 90:14

Does your morning routine set the stage for how your day will be? Do little changes such as lack of sleep or a bad dream deeply affect the pace of your day? I know it does for me. If I don’t get enough sleep or sleep in for too long, it throws off my game and my day feels off.

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By Lily Cooper
Student, College of Humanities and Social Sciences

“Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.” – James 4:8

Summer means many things to many people. For some, it means a time of rest and relaxation. Others see it as a time to get as much done as possible. No matter what end of the summer spectrum you are on, it’s important to stay close to God through summer.

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