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Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Hard to believe... but... Graduation arrived!

It's hard to imagine. 

But the day that I had worked so hard for finally arrived on Saturday, May 12, 2012.  It was kinda like crossing the finish line in a marathon except without the inability to walk afterwards. 

I've been working on this Master's Degree since January 2006.  That's a long time running the same direction... after one single thing... more than 6 years! 

75 hours hours!
Countless hours reading and preparing!
Early mornings and late nights!
Miles and miles on the road to and from school!
Discussions!
Greek (again) and Hebrew!
Learnings!
Challenges!

It was a great experience.  When I started at Lincoln, I was all about getting in, getting my work done and getting out.  But the professors and the community grew on me. 

And I think I grew a lot.  I think I grew as a pastor.  I think I grew as a follower of Jesus.  I think I grew as a husband.  I know I grew. 

It was a rewarding experience.  I finally proved to myself that I could handle my own academically (something I didn't often do in my undergrad). 

Right now, it feels odd to not have any reading to do.  A couple of days ago, I deleted the list in my to-do list software where I kept my upcoming tasks, projects, papers and deadlines for seminary.  It still looks odd to look at my to-do list and not see a "seminary" category.  But it's gone.  And it feels odd. 

Several have asked me "what's next, academically?"  Honestly, right now I don't know.  I'm praying about what may lie ahead.  I don't know if a Ph.D. is waiting out there for me... I don't know if a D.Min is out there... I don't know. 

And it's a good place to be right now.  Soon, the diploma will be up on the wall beside my Milligan diploma, my ordination certificate, my picture of my Milligan buds and my photo of Alexander Campbell. My MDiv hood and gown are hanging on the back of the door in my office.  I don't know if I'll make room for anything else of that sort...

I'll pray about it... and we'll see!

JC



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