Yesterday, I took the LSAT. For the second time. Oof. The first time I took it was rough. It’s a monster of an exam and I seriously underestimated just how difficult it would be. I hadn’t prepared very much, and as a result, my confidence was pretty low. But this time around, I decided I would crush it. So I studied like crazy, took multiple full-length practice tests, and even enrolled in an online weekend prep course. As expected, all this preparation created plenty of opportunities for existential crises and meltdowns.
When I was applying to college, I remember being frustrated by the fact that I had to decide where I wanted to go, what I wanted to study, and what general direction my life might potentially go before I had actually done anything. All I knew was my high school, my hometown, my family, my friends. How on earth could I be trusted to make big decisions that might affect my life for years to come when I knew so little? Now, as law school application deadlines creep closer and closer, I feel that I am confronted with these same frustrating questions.
Law school is a big investment, in terms of money, time, and sanity. I am so fortunate that law school is even an option for me, and I hope this doesn’t come off like some spoiled, angsty rant about how hard life is for me as a prospective law student. I think instead what I am trying to say is that, while these opportunities are exciting, they’re also scary. I could spend a lot of money only to find out that law is not for me, leaving law school with just as much confusion and significantly more debt than I currently have. I could begin a career with high hopes and big dreams to later realize that law is not for me, and I must return to the drawing board. Then again, the law may provide me with a great sense of purpose, meaning, and fulfillment. Practicing law may be just the way God intended for me to engage meaningfully with the world around me, to pursue justice and equality, and to participate in the co-creation of the beloved community. There are so many possibilities, and so few certainties.
This discernment business is frightening, and at times it can seem overwhelming. But I keep reminding myself that I am not alone in feeling nervous about the uncertainties of the future, and that anything worth doing is at least a little bit scary. I don’t know what will happen down the road, but I trust in the fact that by wrestling with these questions of who I am and where I am going, I am, in some small way, drawing nearer to who God is calling me to be. And, for now at least, I am comforted.