October 26, 2014

The Right Way To Do Things

Austen Powell is a freshmen theology major at Southwestern.

A dream. The world is at an end. Buildings collapse at every corner. A fire breaks out across the street. People run in all directions, but one person stands still. It’s a homeless man. As you approach him, he asks a single question: “What are you doing with your life?”

Austen Powell, freshmen theology major, woke up with a start. That question resonated in his mind.

“I was in one of those moments when you say to God, ‘It’s OK; I got this,’” said Powell. “I wasn’t doing anything for God and I knew it. I was scared and would want to pray, but thought that I couldn’t pray because I hadn’t talked to God in so long.”

In high school, Powell was involved in leadership, sports, music and more. He worked hard and made time for friends, but (as he mentioned in a previous opinion piece) was living a superficial life.

He was self-centered. The more he focused on himself, the more he lost sight of God and who God wanted him to be.

One day, while driving with his mom, they saw two boys beating up a smaller boy. Austen felt no need to help the boy and told his mom so. That’s when he realized he needed a change in his life.

From there, Powell began to turn his life around. He began to make meaningful relationships and refocus his life.  All that was left was to decide what he would do with his life.

“I just felt like I wanted to do something in my life worthwhile,” said Powell. “And there’s nothing more important in life than God.”

Powell chose theology so he can be a youth pastor and help students through tough situations. He looks up to Russ Laughlin, vice president of spiritual development, and hopes to someday be like him.

“Pastor Russ is my hero,” said Powell. “He’s was the youth pastor while I was at Chisholm Trail Academy. I’ll see the sky as red and he’ll show me how it’s actually blue. He’s my role model. He shows me how to be a Christian.”

It wasn’t even until the last two weeks of summer that Powell decided to come to Southwestern. He looked at reasons to attend different schools and decided that the best place to keep his priorities straight was here. Another reason he chose Southwestern is because of the friendly campus.

“I was nervous coming here at first,” said Powell. “But it was cool because people are friendly. You see people walking on the street and they just say hi. That really stood out for me.

“Overall, I realize I need to trust God and he’ll work everything out in his own way. It doesn’t matter what I’m doing in life as long as I follow God.”

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