Seminary is now complete… What next?

Today is day 2 – post MDiv graduation.  I have the day off today from work.  Everyone left Saturday and Sunday, so now we are in recovery mode and attempting to get onto a better routine now that all of my academic work has been completed after eight years.

Graduation on Saturday was a wonderful experience that I praise the Lord for.  Dr. James Maxwell delivered the address which was a brief exposition of the book of Jude which centered on vs. 3 “earnestly contending for the faith”  There were 10 graduates in the M.A, MDiv and DMin programs.  There were three of us in the MDiv. and uniquely enough, none of us had a full-time vocational ministry opportunity upon graduation,  so all of us will be searching!  I was very happy that my dad was able to be here all the way from California.  I also miss my mother very much, she has been gone almost four years now and I know that she would have been proud of this accomplishment.

I was also honored with a post-graduation reception that my family held in my honor.  Several people from our church along with seminary professors, family and friends joined in this celebration that took place from 12:00 to 2:00 pm on Saturday.  I received a good number of cards and gifts for which I am extremely humbled and honored.  My wife along with her mother and several friends (David and Glorianne Levy, Mary Orysen, and Mary Wickham) helped organize and serve at the reception and for that I am extremely grateful for their service to make that event a great time for all)

I have made a list of all who honored me with various gifts (cash, checks and others) and I am getting ready to write thank-you notes today.  I am going to take the cash/check gifts and put them in a savings account so I can replace my current computer (5 years old) with a MacBook Pro 15″ model.  I have needed a new computer for a while and there were a few times in the last couple of weeks that I thought this computer was going to quit.  I have everything backed up with Carbonite, but losing the computer during that time could have been tragic.  Now that seminary has concluded, a crash would not be as tragic, but nonetheless still inconvenient.  This replacement is not going to be immediate because I will need to save additional funds to add to what I have received for graduation.

Our lease is over at our current apartment at the end of July.  The lease terms specify a 60-day notice, which is at the end of this month.  We are not sure what the intentions are of the management with regard to a new lease term.  We expected that they would have given us their intentions at the beginning of the month so we would know what the new rent would be, but I guess they have figured that professionalism and courtesy are not applicable from their perspective.  We are going to look around and see what is available.  We find ourselves in a unique situation.  We are not really able or willing to sign another 1 year lease because that would commit us here for a year.  We are in the process of looking for pastoral opportunities and would not want to lock ourselves in here for a long term.  So we are looking for a possible 6 month or 9 month lease or a month to month lease.  We would love to rent a home instead of an apartment but are finding out that the deposit amounts are very expensive and the lease terms not very favorable to our situation.

I am thankful that I have a decent secular job that meets our needs and provides us with excellent benefits.  My heart’s desire is to be involved in full-time ministry now that I have completed my training.  Other post-graduate work may not be an option right now.  I did not get accepted at SBTS, which is a bit disappointing.  I do realize that this is in the sovereignty of God and we await to see what He is going to do in our lives.

A lot of people have asked me what I am going to do with all of my “extra” time.  I plan on spending more time with my family since they have sacrificed a lot of time so I can complete my studies.  I have a more consistent work schedule which will allow me to be home at a relatively decent hour in the evenings and earlier on Friday afternoons.  One of the biggest projects that I want to tackle today is the cleaning up of my desk.  Most people realize that I do not like clutter, but I broke my own rule in the last seven weeks by allowing mountains of paper to accumulate on my desk.  So today sometime, I will deal with this monumental task and get back to a clean desk (like what a minimalist would have)

My biggest fear since this will be the first time in eight years that I will not be attending seminary is that I do not “hit the wall”.  Some will understand this phenomena.

Thanks to all who had a part in my education and training.  Pictures to be posted later..


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