So much has happened in the last 199 days and I look forward to sharing it with you. I am recommiting to my blog as a form of journaling, sharing, discernment and witness. I was convicted to do this because of one of my classes last semester, but I am getting ahead of myself.
My last blog post was about visiting Central Presbyterian Church when they had their service celebrating their Mission Trip with Healing Waters to Guatemala. 20 days after that blog post, Jessica, Esther and I packed up our house in Denver and moved to Austin, Texas. I am no longer working for Healing Waters International and am now a full-time student at Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary studying to become a Minister of Word and Sacrament in the Presbyterian Church PC(USA). What an incredible ride it has been!
I need to start by acknowledging and thanking Jessica and Esther for being such amazing partners in this journey and allowing me to follow my calling of becoming a pastor. This has involved a lot of sacrifice for both of them and will continue to involve a lot of sacrifice from both of them, and Jessica has been incredibly supportive. I am so blessed to have such an amazing wife, coming up on 10 years! I love you Jessica, thank you for being you and thank you for loving me.
Photo taken in June 2001 during our first year of marriage when we were living in South America
Photo taken in December of 2010 around Christmas
I started my studies in September. My first four classes were:
-Intro. to Old Testament
-Systematic Theology 1
-History of Christianity from the early church to the Reformation
-Colloquy on Ministry and Vocation
I have a lot to share about each of these classes and will do so over the next few months. But it was my Colloquy on Ministry and Vocation class that has actually prompted me to get back into blogging. During that class we read the book The Way of Discernment: Spiritual Practices for Decision Making. I highly recommend this book to anyone and will probably be handing out copies for the rest of my life. This book helps you to guide your decision making processes through a variety of very practical exercises.
One of those exercises that occured over and over again was the process of journaling. I realize that by writing down my own journey, I can help see it more clearly and learn to see God working in it. By writing it as a blog in a public forum, I know that my community can help me with my discernment process to. So I have recommitted to the blog.
I plan on writing a lot more later, but for the time being, I encourage you to check out this book. Whether is is big life-changing decsions you are making, or you are just sort a few things out, this book will provide you a great guide and some very practical tools to help with your discernment process.