Dealing with College Anxieties

Anonymous asked:

Any tips for coping with worry and uncertainty before/during/after graduating college?

I answered:

Before/during/after huh? That certainly covers a lot of ground. That is understandable because college, and the late teens-mid 20s time in general, certainly has more than its share of uncertainty and worry.

College is a time that is full of decisions and choices, which is inherently a stressful thing. Adding to that anxiety is the notion that many of these choices are foundational for the rest of your life. “What if I choose to major in business, but I was actually supposed to be pre-med, and I was going to meet my spouse in med school, and I was going to be the one to cure a horrible disease, and now I am going to die alone and millions of people will be condemned to a disease, all because Organic Chem was an 8am class!!!”

Now obviously that’s not how walking with the Lord works. God has a plan for your life, and it does not rest on the razor’s edge of you making all the correct decisions, and if you don’t you just miss out. 

The best way to avoid worry in life, and in college particularly, is to not try to look all the way down the road. In the sermon on the mount, when Jesus is talking about worry, He says that you shouldn’t even think about tomorrow. There are times when you have to think about the future, college certainly being one of them, but focusing on one thing at a time is key to not getting overwhelmed.

Psalm 119:105 says “Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.” The specificity of that metaphor is interesting. If the lamp is a light for your feet, you can only take one step at a time. In Matthew 7, Jesus talks about the narrow path that leads to life. On a narrow, winding path, you can’t run way ahead. You have to take it step by step.

In times of uncertainty, it is always good to focus on what is certain. God loves you. He has not, and will not, abandon you. He has something good for you. And, critically, you do not need to understand every aspect of that plan right now. You just need to look for the step that is before you today, and get strength and wisdom for that step.

 

-Matt from The Bridge

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