We hope you’ll continue running on your Symposium high (and for those who weren’t there you can read this recap!) But we know that reality hits once you get back to school and other commitments. Read this to get some practical pointers and motivation on how you can overcome excuses!
Written by Rebecca Richmond
Excuses, excuses…we hear them, we accept them, we’re irritated by them, we’re even guilty of making excuses ourselves. When it comes to the excuses to avoid pro-life involvement and campus outreach, we’ve heard them all.
In fact, this post was written in response to a suggestion from a student leader to address the topic of excuses in a blog post!
And whether you’ve heard these from yourselves or your friends or club members, the good news is that they’re normal AND they can be overcome. Here are our answers to the top excuses we’ve heard (or made…):
I need to put the priority on school. I just don’t have enough time.
Yes, yes do. We want you to pass your courses with flying colours and go into the world armed with your brains, your degree, and the heart of a nation-changer.
But even if that is your top priority, hopefully you have other priorities in your life still: your health, family, friends, etc. Students across Canada are also putting a priority on the lives of pre-born children and you can too – without flunking out.
There are sacrifices, to be sure, and the sacrifice of time is a steep one. But often, at least in our experience, the issue is not so much the time, but our time-management.
If we start to evaluate our schedules and consider where we put time and into what, we will likely find that, at least on occasion, what we’re spending time on doesn’t match our convictions. The reality is that we always have time for the things we make time for. If our hours with Netflix outweigh our hours of community service, then maybe we need to consider if our priorities match our convictions.
But you don’t have to manage this all alone. NCLN’s staff want to make your work on campus easier. Our resources, training, and mentoring are designed to do just that. Busy students work with our staff each semester in order to impact their campus – without dropping their GPA. (And we have helpful hints for time management too!)
There aren’t enough club members and I can’t do it all alone, so I just can’t do it this year.
Fact #1: There will probably never be enough club members to do all that needs to be done.
Fact #2: The little you do with a few people accomplishes much more than doing nothing would accomplish.
Fact #3: You’ll never attract members unless you actually do something in the first place.
The general principle is: start where you are with what you have.
And there’s so much that can be accomplished when you do! Contact your NCLN Campus Coordinator to help you find little things that you can do that can still have a big impact. There are projects that require practically no prep or cost, no booking, and as many or as few club members as you have – and yet still has an impact AND can help you recruit new members. We’d love to help you get started on them!
I support the cause but I’m focused on sharing the gospel on campus.
There are many good and important groups and causes that people should give time to. But involvement in one doesn’t mean you can’t support another (most if not all students we work with are in that situation!).
If our opposition to abortion – an act that is daily claiming the lives of Canadian children and is funded by our own tax dollars – does not manifest itself in anything except for an ‘I-support-pro-life-but’ statement, then how much does our conviction mean? This is not a charity, this is an emergency.
Maybe you can’t take on a leadership position within the pro-life club, and maybe the club’s weekly meeting is in conflict with another commitment you already made, but there’s other ways you can be an enormous support to the cause on campus:
-Volunteer at a weekly Outreach Table;
-Participate in clipboarding a couple times a month;
-Use your networks to bring friends out to club events.
Just a few hours here and there can be incredibly helpful to the club leadership and to your campus!
I’ll support the cause after graduation.
Unfortunately, abortions are still happening now and therefore our action is needed on our campuses now. Campuses contain the demographic most vulnerable to abortion as well as Canada’s future leaders. We need to be active on campus now in order to make sure these future leaders are well educated, that their hearts and minds are changed so that they can build a brighter future for Canada now and after graduation. We need to be active on campus now in order to reach out to those who may be faced with an untimely pregnancy, for their own sake and the sake of their pre-born children.
The problem with ‘tomorrow logic’ is that tomorrow ‘is always a day away’. If you train yourself now to put off urgent causes until tomorrow, then how will you have the character later to act and speak up?
Our character, our virtue, is formed by our habitual actions, the choices that we make. Our time at university is an ideal time to become pro-life leaders. Now, and not after graduation, is the time to learn the time management skills we need to complete our studies and give time to other priorities in our lives. Now, and not after graduation, is the time to choose to make small sacrifices, to practice courage within a controversial issue, to seek justice and mercy in our nation.
(After graduation is a great time to start supporting the work of NCLN as a monthly donor! Just thought we’d point that out. 😉 )
To reiterate the main points here, this cause is not a charity, it’s an emergency, and we need to match our convictions with action. But you’re not alone in trying to address this emergency: NCLN exists specifically to support you, to help you overcome the excuses you might hear from others (or occasionally feel tempted to make), and to make sure that you can be successful in your club and your classroom.