Sophomore year of high school, I felt like I was drowning. I didn’t have enough time to get everything done. And I felt so overwhelmed that I almost didn’t know where to start. Somehow, I got through that year, but I knew something needed to change before junior year.
That summer, I had the opportunity to travel to Ecuador for a service trip with a group of young Christian Scientists. While I was there, I prayed a lot with the third verse from the twenty-third Psalm, which says that God, as my Shepherd, “leads me in the paths of righteousness / For His name’s sake” (New King James Version). That passage helped me remember that I wasn’t alone doing this work—God was leading me, and I could rely on Him and lean on Him when I was struggling or felt overwhelmed.
I wasn’t alone doing this work—God was leading me, and I could rely on Him and lean on Him when I was struggling or felt overwhelmed.
This idea helped set the tone for me as I entered my junior year. Instead of just struggling through another year, I wanted to deal with the feelings of stress and time pressure right away. While I knew I was facing harder classes and would have more on my plate as an upperclassman, I immediately went back to the idea that had been so powerful to me during the summer: I wasn’t accomplishing everything on my own; God was leading and supporting me. I’ve learned in the Christian Science Sunday School that God is infinite, so I knew I was safe and fully supported because I was relying on an infinite source. This completely changed my view of being busy. With God as my source, I didn’t feel afraid of a lack of time or ability, or fatigue from being busy. Instead, I trusted that in the presence of the infinite, I couldn’t be subject to limitations.
I also thought a lot about the spiritual definition of time from Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy. The first part says, “Mortal measurements; limits, in which are summed up all human acts, thoughts, beliefs, opinions, knowledge” (p. 595). I realized that since I am spiritual—the reflection of God—a mortal measurement, a limit, couldn’t touch me. As a reflection of the infinite God, I’m completely capable of accomplishing whatever I need to.
As a reflection of the infinite God, I’m completely capable of accomplishing whatever I need to.
Everything feels so different this year. Not only am I feeling calmer and more on top of things, but I’m also involved in more at school—without running out of time or struggling to complete everything. In addition, I’ve found that I’ve been able to read the Christian Science Bible Lesson (found in the Christian Science Quarterly) every week—something I didn’t do as frequently during my sophomore year. Not only is it nice to have the opportunity to read passages from the Bible and Science and Health more consistently, but it’s also great that the spiritual inspiration I gain from the Lesson each week helps me keep my thoughts focused on God. And this has definitely been a huge support in all areas of my life.
While I still have more to understand about God as my source, I’m so grateful for all I’ve learned this year and how I’ve been able to put those insights into practice. My approach to school and extracurriculars definitely needed to change at the end of my sophomore year, and with God’s help, it did.