Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States
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First: I am applying to dental schools and I am so confused which college should I accept. I want to go to a good school in a good state where my dad can find a job and my brother would want to live; and with a good church that has activities. At the same time, my friend lives in another state and I want to apply for a school there to be close to her. However, the church there does not have lots of activities and even my friend has changed so much lately. She is no more a kind loving person. Her parents do not want her to talk on the phone and I think she has put herself into some trouble. She is not open and friendly to me any more as she used to be. I do not want to ruin my academic life because of her. However, I feel sorry to lose her as a friend. What shall I do? How can I recognize God's voice in that matter?

With regard to choosing a school, from what you've mentioned I see that after praying and asking for God's guidance, you need to discuss the two options with your family and together try as much as you can to reach a decision that fits everybody. This can be done in a spirit of love and compromise. With regard to church activities, you need to go there yourself and find out and not just assume things. Maybe the Lord wants to send you there to fill the needs the church is lacking. Rank the schools in the order of their convenience to the whole family; and pray to the Lord that the college that accepts you would be the one that he wants for you. God always wants the best for us.

With regard to your friend, she should not one way or another, affect your decision in choosing the school. From what you have written, I gather that she spends a lot of time on the phone. Whether with you or with others, it is not healthy; for our time should be spent wisely not just in chatting for hours on the phone. Also from your words, I guessed that she was not behaving in a Christian way. You say she is your best friend, maybe you need to revise this statement and evaluate if her behavior makes her suitable to be chosen as a best friend. If she has problems and is sincere about changing her life, you can try  to help her; but if she is going to lie about it and is just using you whenever she has time to spare on the phone, you should reconsider this friendship. Also I recommend speaking with her priest so that he may take spiritual care of her.
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