Skip to main content

yes yes its my first day of grad school. :) i took a picture for mom and dad. probably my last first day of school picture EVER. i don't think God's calling me into doctoral work.
well the first day went pretty well. for many reasons, i caught myself thinking that i could still drop all my classes and just keep on working and saving money to start next year. but somewhere in the middle of Kingdom, Church & World, I looked around and thought, "hey this is pretty fun." and ever since, i've had a dedicated but odd work ethic.
i light a candle here in my "office" and sit in our new reading chair whenever i'm tackling a chapter. i am of course killing time right now while my brain resets itself. the last couple sentences i read where really rough. i would read 4 words and stop. 5 words and stop. "think how dumb am I." read 2 words and stop. "i just want to cry." read 4 words and stop. "how will I write papers on this?"
so here i am. avoiding the beginning of my first paper.
i decided to add an online class too. History of Methodism. Hoping my 24 years in the Methodist church will come in handy. I'm really looking forward to reflecting on the original intent of the UMC and what it looks like today. What can we learn from our founding fathers that would guide the UMC to relevancy in our generation?
Aaron and I had a freak out moment today about finances. Then realized we had a lot of reimbursements for youth events coming in. But still reminded us that we spend money on stupid things and we HAVE to better at saving. Have to. No options now. I'm trying to figure out how to get loans. Long, tiring process that I don't want to think about.
It's not as fun to study and read and write when you also have to deal with the stress of paying the thousands of dollars for what you're doing.
But God is faithful. I'm trying to be faithful. This is a dream of mine. I really am glad to finally be starting it.
But man.
The end looks a long way off.

Comments

Most Read

Why Some Experienced Clergy (and Lay People) Have a Hard Time When Younger Clergy Take Renewal Leave

This is a guest post from my very own dad! He's a United Methodist pastor serving in Bend, Oregon. I enjoy chatting church leadership with my dad and it's fascinating to see how our generational differences bring different perspectives to our calling as pastor. We need each generation to walk with each other as we figure it out in this new world. We've been reflecting lately as I finished up a renewal leave and he prepares to retire this June. 
By David Beckett
I fall into the category of experienced clergy which is a polite way of saying I am old. I’ve been pastoring for nearly 40 years. When I was a young pastor my role models were mostly white males who presented an image of success that equated with dedication, overwork, and sacrifice. My first senior pastor talked about the 20 hr/wk he invested in sermon preparation. And he expected his staff to work beyond their stated hours. During those three years of full time seminary and a large youth group I put in up to 80 hr/…

Why pastors need collaboration, not competition

There's competition in every industry. Some get promoted over others. Some work incredibly hard but their gifts go unnoticed. Others do good work and people assume they're fine but underneath, they feel like they could never be honest about how hard life is in this season. People spend more energy figuring out how they measure up in a work culture instead of doing the actual work.

Competition itself implies there are two sides.

I remember field days at my elementary school in Alaska. The half-frozen spring ground was covered with clumps of dirty gray snow. Jackets were thrown on the ground as the fourth graders tried to beat the fifth graders at tug of war. Rope burns were shrugged off as sweat dripped down our young faces. We were determined to beat those fifth graders. Our pride was on the line.

Whether you're a fourth grader or an ad manager at a fancy marketing agency or a senator trying out for attorney general, competition runs deep in our DNA.

We want to be the bes…

99 sheep

Reading Matthew 18:10-14 on this cloudy Anchorage summer morning. Parable of the Lost Sheep. A guy owns 100 sheep. They belong to him. These sheep are loyal and depend on their owner for everything. But then one wanders away. I wonder if this sheep wandered on purpose or accident?

The guy leaves the 99 sheep grazing on the hillside to look for the sheep who got lost. One word in verse 13 jumped out to me. "Andifhe finds [the sheep]...he is happier about that one sheep than about the 99 that did no wander off." IF he finds it. This guy who owns the sheep probably knows the hillside very well and knows his sheep's behavioral patterns. But he may not find this lost sheep. 

When someone wanders off, it's up to them if they want to get found. 

When it comes to our connection to God, some of us may wander on accident. Or on purpose. 

We wait for someone to rescue us. Bring us back. Make it okay. But we have to turn towards the one rescuing us. God will leave the other 99 sheep…