To be honest, this year I have been much less involved/engaged with the AAIV community (which is why some of you, especially newer students, probably don't know me lol) and some of that came from a place of frustration/apathy towards the fellowship—the structure, people, conferences, repetitiveness, organization—and since I've already been around for a while and met some solid friends, it's been really easy for me to stay in my little bubble and disengage myself from the community and not reach out to new students or be involved with a lot of things within the fellowship unless it's convenient for me. It was easy as a senior to look forward to the next chapter of my life rather than continue to invest into a community that has poured so much into me for the past 4 years. I grew apathetic towards AAIV and to be honest towards God as well.
It wasn't until very recently that I had a conversation with one of my friends who was very honest about my (lack of) engagement with new students in AAIV. I think God was trying to convict me to continue to love His people in AAIV even if it didn't seem easy or worth it. I know there are only a few more weeks, but I'm hopeful that God can still use me to show people in this community the love Christ.
So that's me, but I think some of this was supposed to be advice? I'm not very good at that... BUT here's my one piece of advice that I didn't do enough of, take advantage of your time in AAIV and invest in GENUINE relationships with people inside AND outside of the fellowship. I truly believe that your relationship with God's people in your life is strongly correlated to your relationship with Him. It's like a 2 for 1!! Amazing!!
I still remember my very first large group in Bagley, an insane amount of people, Matt Sekijima's beautiful voice and more passionate worship that I had ever seen before. I had no idea that AAIV would be such an important part of my years in college, but God truly BLESSED me with such an amazing community; and here I am 4 years later about to graduate and leave AAIV... CRAZY.