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Paying for college – 'Nearer to Thee'

A Christian Science perspective on daily life.

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Despite even the best budgeting, paying for college often isn't easy. And now that it's harder to borrow money, some families are reconsidering whether they can afford to send their kids to college at all.

In his report about the plight of two college students from Pennsylvania, NPR reporter Claudio Sanchez commented on a "lingering uncertainty in the student loan market" because of the current credit crisis ("For Two Pa. Teens, Two Paths to College," Nov. 24). This broadcast indicated that higher education is a valuable step for any student and increases the possibility for job security. It also asked how one can face this period of economic uncertainty with confidence.

Feelings of anxiety are not a modern-day novelty. And throughout history, people have turned to hymns of comfort in times of need. A favorite of many is the classic hymn, "Nearer, my God to Thee" by Sarah F. Adams ("Christian Science Hymnal," No. 192). It reassures us,


Whatever crosses or trials we encounter as individuals, families, nations, and global communities, we ultimately have to turn to God to find healing or permanent solutions. Drawing closer to God reveals that although "cross" experiences are trying, they're actually gifts that move us to sacrifice a sense of ourselves as mortals having an existence separate from the Divine Mind, or God, and to draw closer to Him. Though the human mind may not comprehend how all life's details will play out, Mind knows that there's a solution for every need.

The refrain "Nearer to Thee" conveys that precious feeling of being close, even at one, with God. "I and my Father are one," Jesus said (John 10:30). With God's help, we have the courage to be strong even in the most demoralizing situation. As we follow God's lead, this spiritual conviction allows us to see that we have access to a broader potential as His child than material conditions might suggest.


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