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Worry-free decision-making

From the Christian Science Sentinel - August 15, 2017

From the teen series: Trending - August 15, 2017

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Last summer, when I arrived at summer camp, I had no idea where I would be going once camp ended. I couldn’t figure out if I should return home or try a new school in a new state—one my parents had suggested.

During the first few days of camp, all I could think about was “I.” I thought about how “I wanted to keep playing year-round softball,” and how “I wanted to go home and attend school with my friends.” I had a specific outline for my life in mind, and I refused to consider anything besides that plan. I felt angry and confused and was awake every night worrying about where I should go.

I was awake every night worrying about where I should go.

One night, while I was talking to my counselor about needing to make a decision—and fast—she shared a passage from Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures with me that says, “When we wait patiently on God and seek Truth righteously, He directs our path” (Mary Baker Eddy, p. 254). I realized that if I wanted to figure out a way forward, I had to stop thinking about myself so much and listen for right ideas from God. I’ve learned from my study of Christian Science that putting aside a sense of myself as separate from God, good, and knowing myself as God’s spiritual reflection, doesn’t just open the way for a good decision, but for the best, most intelligent decision, since God is “the great I am; the all-knowing, all-seeing, all-acting, all-wise, all-loving, and eternal;” … (Science and Health, p. 587). What could be more effective than trusting my life to the all-knowing and all-loving divine Mind?

In the meantime, I began to express gratitude for everyone I interacted with at camp. I’ve found that looking for the good in others is one of the most effective ways of getting my thought off myself. As I began to look for, and feel grateful for, the qualities of God that each of us expresses, I stopped worrying and was less focused on where I was supposed to be after camp.

A couple of days later, though, I was still struggling with the decision, so my counselor shared an article with me called “God’s Law of Adjustment” by Adam Dickey (The Christian Science Journal, January 1916). The article brought out the importance of really letting go of our own plans or view of things. Instead, it helped me see that we can pray, as Jesus did, “Not my will, but thine, be done” (Luke 22:42), knowing that God, good, is completely trustworthy and taking care of us in every circumstance. 

This made a huge impact on me, and I began to wholeheartedly put my trust in God. I threw out my own plans and remained open to whatever the right direction might be. Each day, I prayed, “Not my will, but Thine, be done,” keeping clear that it wasn’t my plan I truly wanted, but God’s plan.

I began to wholeheartedly put my trust in God.

A few days later, I was able to take time out of my busy camp schedule to fill out an application for the school my parents had suggested. I still had some doubts about whether it was the right place for me, but some of my friends from camp, who had been attending that school, started telling me about their experiences. With my new open-mindedness, I suddenly felt receptive to hearing wonderful things about the school that I’d never cared to listen to before. There was even a softball team with an outstanding coach!

My counselor reassured me that God’s unfoldment of right ideas always includes care for every detail. And sure enough, within a week of the camp session ending, I got a call with the news that I’d been accepted into the school, and going straight from camp to school proved to be very harmonious. I was almost surprised by how excited I felt to go, and how peaceful I felt about the idea of trying something new.

This experience taught me so much about how trusting God leads to worry-free decision-making. I am so grateful for Christian Science and the way it’s helped me learn how to listen for God’s guidance.


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