I left home with the dream of becoming a medical doctor…. I always believed, and still believe, that I can do it all, but I don’t do anything…. It’s as if I have been avoiding studying. I know that I should do it, but I don’t. I have come to the point of sleeping more than fourteen hours at a time, waking up, and still doing nothing. I feel badly about it. I know that my family has great hopes for me….

For three years I stopped believing in God, and now I don’t know whether to believe or not. I don’t know what to think. I don’t know what to tell you… but I believe that you really can help me.

Dear Friend,

We are sorry to hear about your situation. It is as if you have fallen into a hole and you can’t pull yourself out. You believe that we can help you get out of the hole, but the truth is that you need a team that can all pull together to get you out.

The first person on the team must be a medical doctor. You need to be evaluated to determine whether you might have some chemical imbalance that is causing you to be depressed. Your symptoms sound like those of someone who is clinically depressed, but there is no way that we can diagnose that condition, as we are not medical doctors.

The next person on your team should be a counselor or academic coach. You need someone who will hold you accountable for your progress or lack of it. A college or university should have a staff member like that who can help you set realistic long-term and short-term goals.

You are avoiding studying, yes, but you are also avoiding the future. You have lost hope and purpose. You are not sure whether or not to believe in God, but you recognize that there is something missing in your life. The reason you have come to think we can help you is that God is calling to you from inside your soul. He is the One who can give you hope for your immediate future and for eternity. We are only people who point the way to Him and to His Son, Jesus Christ, who already paid the price so that you can be forgiven from your sins. So don’t fail to make Him a member of your team too. Answer His call by praying and asking Him to help you.

In addition to pointing you to Christ, we recommend that you set goals for today and include rewards to help give you motivation. For example, set the goal of making an appointment with a medical doctor. Make a deal with yourself that you cannot eat lunch or dinner until you have made the appointment. If the doctor’s office doesn’t answer, leave a message or set an alarm for a better time to call. Then set a goal for tomorrow and make a deal with yourself that you cannot watch television or play video games until you have accomplished that one goal. Little by little, with the help of your team and the steps we have recommended, you can change your situation and your life.

We wish you the best,