November 29, 2016
Naveen, senior music major, grew up in a culturally Hindu family and was first introduced to Christianity when he was a freshman in high school.
"There was a friend of mine named Clay. He was a Christian and was serious about his faith. He would share with me about Jesus and he gave me a Bible that I kept with me.”
Despite Clay’s efforts, Naveen began to look elsewhere for meaning and purpose in life.
“During my freshman year of high school, I was pouring myself into different things looking for what would drive me and make me happy. I tried academics, sports, music, friends, relationships, but I didn't feel like I found happiness there. So I tried the party scene and began experimenting with drugs and alcohol. Eventually I began to sell drugs and steal from my parents, but nothing seemed to really satisfy me. This life that I had built for myself began to collapse. I had this yearning in me that said, ‘There needs to be more. There must be something more.’”
Naveen began to fall into a deep depression.
“I felt empty. Hollow. I didn’t have a reason to get up in the morning, to leave my room. I couldn’t see past what I was experiencing in that moment. Nothing was going well anymore and my whole life was a mess. So I decided that I would attempt suicide.That night I took the Bible that Clay had given me, put my hand on it, and prayed to a God that I did not know. I prayed, ‘Jesus, I don’t know if you are real, or if you have anything else for me, but if you are real please save me from this.’”
That night, Naveen overdosed.
Naveen woke up in the ICU the next morning. “The very first thing I thought about was the prayer that I had prayed the night before. I knew that Jesus was real and that he saved me from myself. I called Clay and asked him to come to see me. We prayed together, and in the hospital I committed to getting to know God and serve him in whatever way that meant."
Clay was a Biola student at the time, and after everything that had happened Naveen decided he would attend there as well. Unfortunately, his first attempt to attend Biola was unsuccessful, as he was unable to raise the necessary funds. Determined, he tried again the next year and enrolled as a music major.
Naveen is still recovering from his past experiences, but he has a passion for ministry. “Over the past couple of years, God has shown me that I am happiest when I am working full-time in ministry.” He has future aspirations to do cross-cultural ministry.
Today is for students like Naveen, who have come to Biola to heal from past hurts as well as discover their passion. Today, we can help make Biola more affordable and accessible for all students.
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