Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Sermon #1

While a few people have asked me how my first sermon went on Sunday night so I figured I’d just share my thoughts with all of you.  In short, I thought it went well.

The text for message was from John 13:1-12a where Jesus washes the feet of the disciples during the Last Supper.  In particular, I focused on Peter’s reluctance to be a gracious recipient of that act.  I’m still trying to see if there’s a way that I can post an video or audio file of it here but I have yet to figure that out. 

I was able to watch a recording of it tonight and even though watching and listening to yourself is a painful exercise,  I must say I don’t think it was too bad for a first try.

I received many good compliments afterward and yesterday I was able to have a debriefing session about it with my vocational mentor who was also very complementary.  He gave a few helpful suggestions and generally, we both felt very good about it.

I was slightly nervous at the very beginning of the service but a few sentences in, I found my groove and it was smooth sailing from there on out.  I had sort of planned on getting nervous once I got to the sermon portion of the service, but that didn’t really happen.  It all just seemed to flow just very naturally and seemed very effortless to me.   And the comments afterwards from those that were there was very affirming as well.

So I’m thankful to God for getting me this far and I’m looking forward to doing more preaching.  I really feel like the Spirit of the Lord was with me on Sunday night.  Thanks to all of you for your support thus far. 

I’ll be preaching next at Grant Reformed Church in Grant, MI on July 5th.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Year #1 in the books

I’ve been away from my blog for awhile – 15 days to be exact.  There are a variety of reasons for this not the least of which is the fact that I had a very sick wife last week and had to play Mr. Mom for most of the week.  I didn’t do too bad, if I do say so myself.  We all ate everyday and everyone made it to school on time and the house is still standing.   She’s fine now, but did contract a pretty bad infection that had her down for the count for the better part of five days. 

In the meantime, I was finishing up with classes and prepping for final exams.  So, with all of that going on there wasn’t much time left for blogging.  Doing these blogs is something I really do enjoy but finding time to do them is sometimes a challenge.  I hope to get back into a routine of writing at least one a week during the summer.

So now to this week – I finished my last final exam Thursday afternoon.  I finished all my other work – papers, sermons, etc. and I can officially say that my first year at Calvin Theological Seminary is in the books.  I have to wait a few weeks before the final grades and all of that come in, but I feel like I’ve done pretty well.

And even if I didn’t, I must say that seminary has been a very good fit for me.  When we first started down this road as a family, there were so many questions.  Was it going to be ‘worth’ it? Would I like it? Could I do it?  Could Jessica and the kids do it?  So far, God has answered all of those questions in the affirmative.  God has been good and we are all doing well.

On another note, I think I forgot to mention this earlier, but in April I officially received my license to exhort in the CRCNA.  This is something that is a bit of a rubber-stamp type of process for seminary students since they need it in order to graduate.  But I’ll be putting it to use for the first time this coming Sunday by preaching my first sermon at Seymour CRC where we’ve been attending. 

A lot of people have asked if I’m nervous and I can’t say that I’m either – at least, yet.  I’m looking forward to getting up there and getting my first one under my belt.  I’ll let you know how it goes!

Oh, when Jessica was sick last week I took Alex to the last chapel service of the year at the seminary.  My co-worker in the Admissions Office, Sara Hogan, snapped this picture of Alex and me.  I think it’s pretty cute.  This is him trying to decide which donut he wants.



Thursday, May 5, 2011

Busy Week

I’m a day late on my post.  I usually like to get one up at last once a week, so I’m a day late.

The Ten Haken Family has been busy this last week.  Here’s a quick recap:

Friday night we hosted three college girls at our house who were at the seminary for a workshop Friday night and Saturday.  We didn’t get to know that really since they got here about 9:30 on Friday night and were gone again by 8:30 the next morning.  But they had a place to sleep and take a shower.

Saturday I attended a campout with Zachary and his Cadet group from church.  The Grand Rapids East Cadet Corp owns approximately 150 acres of woods south of Grand Rapids where they hold a campouts and other events.  So we were out there this weekend with about 15 other church Cadet groups from Grand Rapids. 

I’m still getting used to having this many CRC’s in such close proximity.  There are so many things that can be done differently because resources can be pooled.  It’s pretty amazing.

But I couldn’t stay overnight since Sunday morning was our Friendship Ministries Celebration at Plymouth Heights CRC.  So I took Marcus (the young man I’ve been working with this year) to church there and we participated in the service a little bit.  It was nicely done.

Monday night Zachary had a school choir concert and Tuesday night was his school orchestra concert.  Both were very well done and we are feeling very good about having our kids enrolled at Grand Rapids Christian.

So that’s a bit about we’ve been up to the last few days and in between I’m finishing up my semester and Jessica’s been doing a fair bit of subbing.