Friday, February 13, 2009

Two Out of Three Ain't Bad ...

One of the worst parts of the beginning of the semester is that you really have no idea where you stand, grade wise.  I know, I know - grades aren't supposed to be what matter, especially when there are so many other things that I need to be learning in preparation for ordination.  But let's face it - that bottom line is important.  So - for the first month / month and a half of the semester you have no idea where you stand.  Yesterday I got my first glimpse into where I stand.  I picked up my final exam for my Nonprofit Leadership class (the class I took in January) and I got an A- on it!!  Whew.  One of the reasons that last semester kicked my butt was because of the exams - getting an A- restored some of my confidence in my academic skills.

Then came preaching.  We handed in an exegesis last week in preparation for our first sermon.  The assignment was EXTREMELY vague on the syllabus and not very well explained in class.  I was concerned when I turned it in that I hadn't really done what I was supposed to have done.  I was pleasantly surprised, however, when the paper was returned to me today and I had gotten an A-.

That brings me to New Testament.  How can such a beautiful collection of books be quickly becoming the bane of my existence?  Anyway, last semester I had to turn in a text critical analysis of the Lord's Prayer (anyone remember my "It's all Greek to me" post?) and I knew as soon as the conversation got going in colloquy that day that I should have gone a completely different direction with the paper.  I ended up with a B- on that paper.  So - two out of three in terms of grades that I'm happy with this week.  I'll take that for right now.

If I look past the inevitable letter-shaped ink blots that seem to cause entirely too much stress, there really have been wonderful things going on in my life.  My birthday was yesterday and it was WONDERFUL!!  Bruce had surprised me with an early present last week at Jon's house but had been keeping very quiet about my other present.  He said it was something that I hadn't asked for so I was extremely perplexed.  Since my birthday fell on a Thursday and I don't have class on Thursday's I slept in and then relaxed in bed with the remote in my hand.  I got moving around 10:30 and took the scooter to Emory to meet Stacey for lunch.  The weather has been so incredibly gorgeous lately and it is so much to ride the scooter!!  Stacey and I had lunch, met up with her boyfriend and then I had a meeting with my preaching group.  I didn't mean being at school because it wasn't really a stressful day and sometimes you just need to walk down a hall an run into all sorts of people who you adore!!  If you think about it - it's the perfect way to spend a birthday.  I got home and waited for Bruce who told me that I wasn't supposed to do work on my birthday - while I waited I scrapbooked and bargained with Lilly to try to keep her from sitting on the scrapbook that I was working on.  Bruce walked in with flowers and balloons (Lilly wasn't sure what to do with the balloons) and then surprised me with a gift certificate for an hour-long massage at a downtown spa!!  How incredible is he!!  I can't wait to make my appointment.  We went out to dinner and then came home for cake.  I got to talk to my parents and my sister and got a bunch of other messages that made me smile (to those of you whose calls I missed I WILL return them, I promise!!) and got lots of love on facebook.  We lounged around for the rest of the night watching Treasure Quest and some BBC show about cars (it's funnier than it sounds).  It really was a great day.  My 24th birthday was SUCH a wonderful way to start off the next year of my life.  TABULA RASA!!

On another note, I started thinking about seminary today.  Jon and I were talking during our preaching class about how tough this year has been for us.  I've heard people say that Candler does everything that they can to break us down and then try to build us back up using their mold.  It actually offends a lot of people who liked the person they were when they came to seminary.  I had never really bought into this particular theory.  I don't really like the thought that an institution is trying to mold and shape who I am as a Christian.  It's a strange concept.  But I started thinking about it in another way.  Rather than being broken down to be formed according to a mold, I think there is some truth to the fact that we are being broken down to be more humble.  So many of us come to seminary sure of our call.  Even if we really don't know what we want to do or where we want to end up, many of us feel fairly confident in our knowledge of what we're getting into.  But we really don't.  We'll never know everything that we need to know.  We'll never even come close.  And honestly I think we need to be kicked down - well, I can't speak for everyone, but I think I needed to be kicked down.  It's not that I didn't understand humility before I got here, I just think I needed my confidence to be shaken a little bit.  Because if I can make it through this I can make it through some of the challenges that I will face in the ministry.  At least now I'm facing challenges in the confines and comforts of seminary.

I think this revelation has been building lately.  And while it's been building something else clicked in me and I've managed to get back in touch with some of my friends that I've lost touch with since Bruce and I moved down to Atlanta.  It's really been amazing and it feels great to talk to people on a more regular basis that I used to see every day.

So now it's the weekend.  After a couple of mishaps this week, organizational-wise, I've decided to make sure I go into next week on top of my game.  Tomorrow is Valentine's Day, but it's never been a really big holiday for Bruce and me so I think he is going to go fishing and I'm going to hopefully make myself a game plan.

I'll try to get some good pictures of my beautiful flowers and balloons later on in the weekend!!  I want to show them off!!

Love to all,
Sarah :)

No comments:

Post a Comment

Hello and thanks for commenting! Unless I have your email address, I respond to all questions directly in the comment form. Check back if you've asked one! xo, Sarah

Related Posts with Thumbnails