Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Two Down, One To Go

It’s been awhile again and lately it seems like writing a blog entry just hasn’t fit very well into my routine.  Mostly because my routine has been shifting and I haven’t been able to make time to write.  The kids and I  have been busy with school and related activities, which I hope to write about soon.

The big excitement as of late is that I am officially finished with my second of three years in the Master of Divinity program at Calvin Theological Seminary.  I recently had a ‘status update’ on Facebook to that effect and my grandmother commented that when I first announced my plans to go back to school for three years it seemed like such a long time and now, well, not so much.  Another friend asked me if it felt weird or great to be at this point.  Each of them getting at the same point in their own way – What next?

I must admit that it seems neither long nor short since I started school. I don’t feel weird or great.  That’s not suggest to that I’m somehow indifferent about my progress it’s just that it all seems very normal for us.  School has been great and I’m happy to be this far, but I don’t feel weird about it because we’ve worked hard to get to this point.  Additionally, when we first embarked on this journey, three years didn’t sound all that long to us.  School has always been a temporary.

In the Reformed tradition, we speak of the Christian life being one of transition.  We live in a world where Jesus has come and has been resurrected and at the same time we live in a world where sin still exists. For the Christian, this creates a tension between what is often referred to as the ‘already’ and the ‘not-yet’.  That is, sin has been defeated, but it effects remain so we live in the hope of the Second Coming  that has already been foreshadowed in the resurrection of Jesus even as we wait for our own resurrection.  Therefore, this life is important and significant, but nonetheless, temporary. 

This is analogous to how we’ve viewed our time at seminary – important but temporary.  My training is both already in that it’s shaping me for my future and not-yet in that it’s not the final goal, but rather a means to that goal.  We’ve learned to live in and appreciate the tension between our present situation and the unknown future that awaits us. 

Having two years in and one to go is neither long nor short; weird nor great – rather it’s simply another marker of God’s faithfulness on this journey that he’s called us to.  And we happy to be both in the already (of two years done) and the not-yet (of one year to go).  We are thankful for the prayers and support of so many of our friends and family over these past two years and continue to covet that support in the coming year as well. 

What’s next?  I’m not sure, but God is.  And for that, whether the time seems long or short; whether it feels weird or great, we are grateful.

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