I was a little nervous about attending a Church of Christ university, considering the major differences in our religious beliefs. However, I desired to be in a more Christian environment rather than the less Christian environment and influences that I might encounter at a public school.
Lipscomb University required one Bible class each semester, and freshmen begin the year with Early Hebrew History. Basically, this class was going to be an overview of the Old Testament, but I still did not know what to expect. The class was getting off to a pretty normal start, and it was not until it was time for me to ask off for the fall Holy Days that things began to get interesting.
My professor was surprisingly very interested in the fact that I keep God's Holy Days. He told me to have a wonderful trip, and he asked me if I would mind talking to the class sometime about how and why I observe the Holy Days of God. (Gulp!)
The response that came from my mouth was, "No, I wouldn't mind at all," but in my head thoughts were whirling in all directions.
"What? Me talk to 40 Church of Christ members about the importance of the Holy Days?" Although the thought seemed terrifying at the time, I knew what a great opportunity it would be.
Weeks passed, I returned from the Feast, and before I knew it we were delving into Leviticus 23 in Early Hebrew History class.
I was beginning to forget about my professor's proposal to talk to the class, assuming he would give me a day or two to prepare a few notes.
However, it was in the middle of our Holy Day discussion in class when he turned to me and said, "Laura Beth, would you mind sharing with the class your beliefs concerning the Holy Days?" My first thought was panic, but suddenly a wave of calmness came over me.
After a deep breath, I began to tell my class why God's Holy Days were still important today, how each Holy Day had one or more symbolic meanings, and how when put all together, they form the plan of God. I described how Holy Days are high Sabbaths, what is usually done on the Holy Days and how they have made my life so much more fulfilling. I knew that God placed that calm feeling within me and guided my words and thoughts that day because under normal circumstances, I would have been unable to do such a thing.
The reaction from the class was generally as I expected. Many began asking me questions, while others simply wanted to argue. My professor, however, had a very interesting summation of my explanation. He commented that I, as well as the other members of our church, probably have a much closer and deeper relationship with God since we keep His Holy Days. I was completely shocked to hear this, but it really touched me.
My professor came to a very accurate conclusion, and it is sad to think that even though he realized this, he most likely will never keep God's Holy Days himself in this life.
After the horrific events of Sept. 11, 2001, so many of us needed to be comforted and encouraged. We were all blessed to have the Sabbath, the Feast of Trumpets, the Day of Atonement, the Feast of Tabernacles and the Last Great Day follow it so quickly. I am sure we can all agree that the Holy Days that year and since have been more meaningful than ever.
Let's not let Satan distract us from the Holy Days and God's plan. Let us mourn over the evil that has occurred in our world, but humble ourselves before God, repent and draw closer than ever to God with fervent prayer, Bible study and fasting. Meditate on and pray for Christ's return and God's Kingdom.
Keep the vision of the Kingdom at the front of your mind, and let it give you hope and guide you always! VT