Well that took some doing...
10 years ago, I set foot on Pittsburgh Theological Seminary's campus, a freshly graduated young punk who had no idea what I was doing. Probably way worse than not knowing what I was doing, I thought I knew what I was doing. There were some big mistakes and some false starts, so after I moved to Westminster I took some time off to reorganize, and get my feet under me. Then 6 years ago I made a triumphant return, and never looked back.
This morning at 7:30 AM, I submitted my last paper and got the heck out of dodge.
It's kind of a crazy feeling, to have worked on something for so long, and to finally come to the end. I so many more ways than I can count, I am a vastly different person than I was when I started ten years ago. Some of that is personal and professional. I've learned a lot about youth ministry from being on the job. I have kids now, which changes the game in so many ways. But a lot of who I've become comes from both the formal education I received at the seminary, as well as the informal life lessons that come along through the process. I've made some dear friends, both with the students and with the professors. I've worshiped with new people. I've tried new worship styles. I've prayed with people in deep and meaningful ways. All of this has had an impact on me.
But now I'm looking forward.
I'm looking forward to spending more time with my family. I'm looking forward to that time being spent with them not including me as a zombie like figure, too tired to really appreciate what's happening in front of me. I'm looking forward to putting my focus and my energy into youth ministry here at Westminster. I'm looking forward to being creative and resourceful when it comes to ministry, finding new ways to tell a very old and valuable story. I'm looking forward (believe it or not) to what remains of the ordination process. I'm looking forward to preaching more. I'm just looking forward, and it all looks very good.
Life comes at us in seasons. For as much as I preach against our culture's worshipping at the altar of busy-ness, I have recognized that this was a season where I had to work against my own preaching. But seasons end. This one's over, and I'm ready for what comes next!