Corey’s Corner: Considering life after Biola

President Barry Corey asks students four questions about post-graduation life.


| Photo courtesy of University Communications and Marketing

President Barry Corey, Writer

Last week I had the privilege of addressing the graduating class at Sekolah Pelita Harapan, a private high school near Jakarta, Indonesia. Graduates of this Christian school attend leading colleges across the U.S., Europe and Australia and many of them have come to Biola, including our Associated Students president, Evan Tan.

I challenged these students to consider several questions as they begin the next phase of their lives — questions I have also been asking myself and would encourage you to do likewise. After the challenge, I took a selfie with the students behind me. You can find it on Instagram. Here are four of the questions I posed to those 17 and 18-year-olds.

1. What is your potential?

Since you are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works that God prepared in advance for you to do — Ephesians 2:10 — you need to understand that workmanship means you’re still a work in progress. But it’s a progress toward something that is in line with your passions. Stop to reflect occasionally on the kind of influence you want to make, and be guided by that more than by the status you want to achieve.

2. Is your faith increasingly yours?

When I was in my twenties, I went through a crisis of normalcy. My life was routine and crisis-free. I sometimes thought, it’s too easy being a Christian raised in a family of faith — a life that provides little challenge to my spiritual stamina. That Proverbs line about leaning not on my own understanding was my problem. I’d leaned more on my understanding instead of taking to heart the first and last part of that verse, trusting in the Lord and in all my ways acknowledging him.

3. Where are you going?

Sometimes we don’t know where we’re going. Maybe you’re there. I’ve been at that place. As life unfolds, I’m reminded more and more about the truth of Hebrews 11:8-10, that Abraham and his family set out not knowing where they were going. But a few verses later we see Abraham knew what he was looking for, that kingdom vision of a city that has foundations built by the creator. The Bible gives you permission to acknowledge you may not know where you’re going, so long as you know what you’re looking for. As Hebrews 11 begins, keep your eyes fixed on Jesus.

4. Are you okay where you’re weak?

In our weakness, we can either sit back and give up, or we can recall God’s promise that through our weakness his strength emerges. Moses, when called by God, asked “Who am I?” God responded in his “I am who I am” declaration that it’s not about our ability but about his authority. The world is desperate for hope and truth and grace and needs willing people moved by the Holy Spirit to rise up and take their place — not to become the next big anything, but to go in the strength of the Lord.

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