tis the season... for a wee bit o' cynicism

Report: Nations Wealthy Cruelly Deprived Of True Meaning Of Christmas

Sorry, I just couldn't resist. Despite my cynicism regarding what the observance of Christmas has become in America, I do wish you and yours a merry Christmas.


memorization, and papers, and a final, oh my...

This week has seen me steadily knocking out end of the semester requirements for the main course I took this fall towards my ThM. The course itself was on the history and theology of the Westminster Confession of Faith. For you non-Presbyterians the Westminster is a 17th century document that was developed by the Westminster Assembly which met from roughly 1643-1649. The Confession is basically a summary of biblical Christian teachings and is accompanied by the Larger and Shorter Catechisms which were to be used in the religious education of the laity and of children respectively.

I took my final exam this afternoon for which I studied up on the historical context of the Assembly and memorized 50 of the questions and answers from the Shorter Catechism. Earlier in the week I finished a paper in which I was asked to write down any and all disagreements (exceptions) that I have with the Confession itself and now I'm blogging and avoiding my last two papers for the class. These papers are basically supposed to be some form of practical exposition and application of two chapters of the Westminster in the form of either a sermon or a class lesson.

I'm finding that I have absolutely no energy or desire to do these papers despite the fact that I find both of the chapters I'm writing on very interesting and helpful (my chapters of choice for those of you who are interested are Ch. 12 on Adoption, the theological kind not the children kind, and Ch. 27 on the nature of the Sacraments). This is one of those situations where I need to keep saying to myself, "This was your choice!" I think that it's important for me to do this additional degree and therefore I did choose to pursue it. However, that doesn't mean I like taking tests and writing papers anymore than I ever have. I wonder if making the decision to go back to school yet again could be considered a form of self-torture?


1 year...

Today Brooke and I spent the whole day in a semi-comatose state while recovering from our separate bouts with the latest flu bug. While sitting on the couch having already watched way too much TV for a day Brooke asked what the date was. When I told her it was December 6th it dawned on her that today is the one year anniversary of our return from New Zealand. After she said this we both just kind of looked at each other with a sad look in our eyes.

Due to our naivete we had hoped a year ago that we'd be back in Auckland by now. We realized fairly quickly that wasn't gonna happen. However, we'd hoped that by this time we would at least have a clear date of departure in our heads. At this point that simply isn't the case. Throughout most of the year we were tentatively looking at sometime around April/May 08 but with support-raising going as slow as it has been that's not gonna happen either. Our new goal, for now, is to be heading out for New Zealand sometime around September 08. That might still be showing a bit of naivete but oh well, I'd rather be an optimist.

So here we sit... and wait... and wonder... and lots of other stuff, while we wait. We do wait with hope though that there is purpose in our waiting. That there is meaning in our meantime. And that there is light at the end of the tunnel.