First off, our friends back in Indiana have this great (read: obnoxious) tendency to assume that whenever we have announcement, it must mean Emily and I are going to announce we're pregnant. Because of this, we will either have to announce any possible pregnancy in the future in some ultra-creative fashion...or just not tell anyone until we show up with a baby in our hands.
Anyway, I do have an announcement. And no, it has nothing to do about placentas, umbilical cords, or gestation.
Instead...I'm going to grad school!
Even before finishing college, I knew that I would soon want to return to school in order to further my studies in Scripture and theology. (Which, by the way, is hilarious to me now, because before college I swore that I would NEVER go to seminary). I just wasn't sure when that time would come. Well, in November I submitted a letter to the elders and pastor of Good News Church, asking if they would consider allowing me to become a distance student in order to achieve a Masters Degree. They said, yes! I applied to two schools, was accepted to both, and choose to attend Fuller Theological Seminary.
I will begin in the fall of this year, working towards a Master of Arts in Theology (MAT). A MAT is typically a two-year program that focuses on systematic and Biblical theology. Because I will doing half of the degree via correspondence and online courses (and the other half through on-campus, two-week intensive courses) it will probably take me closer to three. I will choose to do a Biblical Studies emphasis. This will prepare me for either a Master of Divinity (MDiv), which is a typical pastoral degree; or a PhD program, in order to go into academic work (writing, teaching, and research).
Emily and I both are excited about this next step in my life. I'm excited to continue to learn more about my God and His Scripture and to be able to still serve the church and share what I'm learning.
Please pray that 1) finances will come through; 2) I will able to give my best to my marriage, my role at church, and to my studies; and 3) that God would even now shape my heart into a the place of a humble learner at His feet.