Student Profile: Brad Assaraf '19

Brad Assaraf

 

Class Year
2019

 

Hometown
Blaine, Minnesota

 

Majors
Biblical & Theological Studies
Philosophy

 

Residence Hall and Floor
Founders, Catacombs

 

Favorite place on campus
The Catacombs. Every time I’m walking back to the hall, I get excited because it’s a place of rest and there’s always something weird going on in the commons.

 

Why did you choose Covenant?
I chose Covenant because it is a place that cares about academic rigor while understanding that our studies should lead us to worship. Here, learning is done in the context of a tight-knit, thoughtful community, in which knowledge is not an end in itself but a means to the end of worship.

 

Did you visit Covenant as a high school student? If so, how did that visit impact your decision to attend Covenant?
I first visited during my junior year of high school and then again for scholarship weekend during my senior year. During both visits, it was incredible to see how many different ways Covenant students were pursuing God’s calling for their life. Students studying English or philosophy or biology or economics were all being obedient to God’s specific calling on their life, but they were all bound together by the transforming and redeeming blood of Jesus. I saw that Covenant is a group of followers of Jesus who are seeking the Kingdom of God on earth together, and I wanted to be a part of that.

 

How is Covenant unique?
I believe Covenant is unique in its measurement of success. At Covenant, we are taught that our success is not dependent on how much we have (talent, money, power) but on what we do with what we’re given, empowered by the Spirit of God. All of our talents and resources are gifts from the Father. We’re constantly asking the question, “How can I best steward what I’ve been given?”

 

Describe Covenant in three words.
United. Contemplative. Purposeful.

 

What has been your favorite experience at Covenant?
It’s incredibly hard to pick just one, as I have so many wild memories of times with my fellow Homeboys (the men of Catacombs). Some moments that come to mind are the Catacombs semi-annual preview weekend skits. The brainstorming sessions for those skits are hilarious. Then performing them is always wild.
One memory that stands out occurred during a Saturday night in February, when a few of us on the hall we’re really hungry. It was around 1:00 AM so we didn’t want to leave campus because we would be exhausted the next day at church. A friend remembered he had some eggs and bacon in the fridge. So we pulled out the griddle, huddled up, and cooked a gourmet breakfast meal in commons…spiced to perfection. We enjoyed the grub and shared good conversation. It was such a simple time of sweetness and contentment.

 

What is your favorite class so far?
Old Testament Introduction with Dr. Scott Jones. Dr. Jones is the man. He has a brilliant way of making Biblical scholarship come to life. In the class, Dr. Jones gives you a peek into the world of the Ancient Near East. Building historical context around the Old Testament was illuminating. Every class blew my mind. I would immediately pull out my phone to text my parents or friends something crazy I had learned.

 

What makes hall life at Covenant unique?
Getting to see the beauty and complexity of your hallmates. You get to be with them in times of silliness and immaturity, but you also see them when they’re being earnest and thoughtful (and sometimes when they’re in pain or sorrow). It feels like what Biblical community is supposed to be: being completely comfortable presenting yourself to your friends, knowing they’ll love you and walk with you despite your weakness.

 

What are some things you enjoy about your majors?
The incredible professors. I have wanted to study theology since I was in sixth grade. Being able to finally study the Scriptures with the guidance and expertise of God-fearing professors is amazing. In philosophy, it is exceedingly valuable that we get to walk through unfamiliar and dangerous ideas with wise and thoughtful professors. They themselves have walked through these ideas but have come out even more in love with Jesus and they lead us to do the same.

 

What person at Covenant has had the greatest impact on you, and why?
I would have to say Jack Roylston. Jack was the person I stayed with both times I previewed at Covenant. We would text every now and then throughout my senior year of high school, and it was a huge comfort knowing that I had a friend and mentor coming into freshman year. Throughout this year, Jack has been so gracious and patient with me. He’s walked with me in times of frustration, sorrow, confusion, and joy. He’s incredibly wise and loving, and I’m so grateful to him and the Lord for his friendship.
I also need to mention Dr. Fikkert, who was especially kind and helpful during my transition into Covenant life.

 

How is Covenant preparing you for life after graduation?
In my classes, I’m not only learning content - I’m learning how to think critically, read analytically, and communicate effectively. Beyond that, I’m learning how to think about everything in relation to the resurrection of Christ. I’m constantly asking “How do the gifts and calling God has given me intersect with how He’s making all things new in the world?”

 

How is Covenant equipping you for active membership in the church?
Covenant teaches reverence for the church, as we cannot seek the Kingdom of God on earth in isolation. We need each other in order to be faithful to the commands of Jesus. Personally, Covenant is equipping me for active church membership by helping me to delight in the diversity of the body of Christ. I come from a church that is much different than a PCA church. Being steeped in the liturgies of the PCA over the past year alone has been invaluable and beautiful to experience. I’m so thankful that Christ’s church is not all the same. How amazing is it that Jesus gives us freedom in the ways we worship Him!
“And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.” (Hebrews 10:24-25)