After my first year in EPIC Commission, I realized what I can really gain from the program when I have the desire to receive. That has been the difference for me. I have really begun to passionately desire the things of God, and EC has been like fuel on the fire.
Moving from a nice home, where there was always yummy food, clean clothes, and great wifi, to a small apartment with three other girls, was quite the shock. But I have to say, it has been the most amazing experience and I wouldn’t trade it for anything. With that being said, here are the top 5 things I love about EC House Life:
1. You get to decorate your own place.
I don’t know about you, but as a kid, my parents did all the decorating. All I wanted to do was to put up my favorite funny cat picture and I would’ve been happy. Thankfully, in EC, you can do whatever you want with your space. My roommates and I decided to decorate the living with Christmas lights year round because, when you’re on your own and making adult decisions, you can do that! If you want to support your favorite sports teams by putting their logo all over your room, you can! It’s one giant blank slate that you get to fill with your all of your favorite things.
2. It’s party night, every night.
Okay, so there’s not really a party EVERY night, but seriously, there is always something fun to do. Whether it’s a Just Dance Tournament during open hours, or a cozy night-in with my roommates, it’s always a blast. Most nights I find myself in the living room with a bunch of friends (and lots of popcorn) for a movie marathon. You’re never lonely or bored, because there is always something going on!
3. If you ever need help, someone is always there.
While I enjoy alone time, I have to say it’s nice having people around all the time. There is always someone to talk to, whether it be your roommates or just one room over to your EC neighbors. It’s awesome because we are all in the same season of life and we are able to hold each other accountable. Plus, I have found this especially helpful when I run out of salt or milk and need it in a pinch. Proverbs 18:20 MSG says, “Words satisfy the mind as much as fruit does the stomach; good talk is as gratifying as a good harvest”.
4. Sharing is caring.
Let’s face it, adulting can be hard. You run out of groceries, you forget things, and you don’t have tons of money for buying things you want. In my apartment and throughout the EC Housing, I love how there is a constant theme of sharing. Are you hungry? I’m making pasta. You forgot to print your paper? Here, borrow my printer. You want to watch Finding Dory but can’t afford to buy it? Don’t worry, I bought it last week, let’s all watch it! Cheesy as it is, friends share and it is making surviving on my own a whole lot easier.
5. Most importantly, you gain three new best friends.
Now technically, I have 35 new friends, because EC is family! But the times I get to spend bonding with my roommates are my favorite! You simply can’t have a bad day when you have three amazing roommates/friends around to cheer you up. Proverbs 27:17 NLT says, “As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend”
I absolutely love EC House Life, and the awesome people that come with it! It has been a new, different, and exciting experience but I am so grateful to call it home.
1st Year Student
“Intimacy” is that closeness that comes with… just being open. Intimacy and transparency are must-haves that define a healthy Christian’s life; and in Strong Tower, intimacy and transparency are a guarantee. Whether you are in EPIC Commission’s Strong Tower class or just a similar, tight-knit group of God-chasing people, there are three reasons why a rich environment of self-honest believers will help you go further than you ever could on your own!
1. Digging up the intense, sometimes-broken parts of your heart is uncomfortable.
In any situation that requires you to be brutally honest, you can bet your lucky stars that the Lord is testing and growing you for your own well-being. For you to be honest, it requires you to sacrifice a very real piece of yourself: your privacy. Everyone has a backstory and a past; when you are able to use yours to the enemy’s disadvantage, that is a raw place from which honest growth comes. It’s along the lines of the Matthew 20 principle of paradoxes of God’s economy of growth: If you want to be strong, you have to prove your weakness. In Strong Tower, get to capitalize on enforcing the enemy’s defeat by essentially “carbon-copying” your week to your brothers or sisters-- regardless of how it looks!
2. we are made to be interdependent!
We are not designed to be “independent,” “I’ll-fix-it-myself,” “all-need-is-God-and-the-beach” kind of people-- we are designed to be interdependent! Otherwise, God wouldn’t have said in Genesis 2:18 that man being alone is a major no beuno. In God’s design, our strength ultimately comes from Him, and He makes us whole and properly joined. But, the Lord also knew that we need to supplement each other. That’s why he’s having over seven billion of us share the planet with each other! Essentially, we need people to bolster us and keep us going all the time; and in Strong Tower, you get a whole panel of people just like you to keep you going.
3. In a word, “encouragement.”
Man alive, isn’t life hard when no one is speaking a power-of-life word into you? Strong Tower is not like that. Strong Tower is not a spiritual/emotional massage, don’t get me wrong. It’s a challenging class, but it’s so strengthening, too. I walked into my first day of Strong Tower like, “I know I have my secret things and I’m sure they all do, too,” thinking that my experiences were vastly different to my first-year brothers. I was shocked when people started opening up and I thought, “What? You dealt with that, too?” It was so reassuring to me that I was genuinely surrounded by people that I understand and who could understand me.
In short, you were never created or expected to do life alone. God doesn’t want it for you and deep down, you really don’t want it for yourself. God brings people into your life to be a blessing to you, to bolster you, to challenge you, and to grow you. Strong Tower-like settings challenge you to excavate the touchy areas of your own heart, to stop doing it all yourself, and to receive encouragement to keep running your race with endurance. It can be wildly uncomfortably, but, as I have found in my time in Strong Tower, all you have to do is stay soft and pliable and let the Potter do His work.
1st Year Student
If you follow these tips, then Move-In Day is sure to be a great day.
Follow these Do's and Don'ts when you are figuring out what to bring to EC so that packing, and your first few months away from home will be a breeze!
When I moved here last year I didn’t know anyone and it was my first time living by myself. Was it scary to go to a place I had never been before, with people I had never met? You bet, but with God’s help and a few tips, you can be a thriving part of Kzoo. So here are a few things that will help you get connected with the people, the church, and the area of Kalamazoo.