Ashlee Chism

wrote this shortly after graduating from Southern Adventist University. She is now studying information science at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Michigan, and hopes to work as an archivist or a special collections librarian.

​No Longer Petrified

I don’t know the future, but God does.

I stood in the doorway of the cafeteria, petrified, unsure of what to do. I was a fresh arrival at Southern Adventist University, a week late into the winter semester. Sure, I knew how a cafeteria worked, but this was larger than the one at my academy, and it had more options.

“Don’t be afraid, Ashlee,” came a friend’s voice from behind me. “It’s just a cafeteria.”

“I’m not afraid,” I said, watching to see what he would do as he entered.

I have always approached life like that: hanging back until I’m sure I know what to do or until I know I won’t look stupid. I have this fondness for the predictable and a love …

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