For the last two weeks (and probably a little bit longer than that), I have been pondering how to begin this blog. It also has not helped that it seems like there's not enough information to post when classes are not in session, but then once classes start, there's never enough time to post. Finally today, two weeks in to the start of classes at Concordia Theological Seminary in Saint Louis, Missouri (or 20% of the way through the academic semester for those who like math), I am beginning my first blog post. So, if it fails, know that I just spent numerous hours in classes with a 10 minute break for lunch and just took a break from 3 1/2 hours of reading. (I hope you can pick up on my sarcasm) :)
When I was first entering college as a music major, I was intrigued with the very essence of practicing music. I spent hours and hours and hours...and hours rehearsing for Luther College's annual "Christmas at Luther" program. All those hours of rehearsing paid off rather quickly in the numerous performances. I could have performed that set 20,000 times and still received chills when certain chords or words were sung. It was an "awe" experience. It is certainly one of the things I enjoy the most about performing music and composing it. When the chords and the lyrics mesh up just right, it would be odd for a human being not to have a near "out-of-body experience." However, as I earlier mentioned, achieving this musical "Garden of Eden Moment" takes nothing short of long hours of rehearsal and a miracle!
My reasoning for my long introduction to music has to do with a new "feeling" here at the seminary. I'm still not sure how I would describe it. It is a moment when your heart leaps up to your throat and you feel so excited and so at peace and so joyful that you don't know what to do. In my mind, this beats the musical experience by a long shot. Why? God is directly connected with it.
My first few weeks at seminary have been the exact OPPOSITE of a cake walk. There has been more craziness in schedules, in finances, and in life in general than I have ever experienced in my life. But I am excited. In my classes and in my devotional time (both private and with others), it has become greatly apparent how much significance can be placed in the fact that God is in control. He is the Creator. He was there before any other existence, and he is GOD! It is much easier to go through life living in that simple knowledge. When God becomes God, there is a realization that there is simply nothing that we have power over as sinful creatures. There is also nothing that we have power to do to make us better, but we can rest in the hands of God. The only God, and the one who is in charge of it all--working as he wills.
The word's of the prophet Isaiah have been with me all this week:
Have you not known? Have you not heard?
The Lord is the everlasting God,
the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He does not faint or grow weary;
his understanding is unsearchable,
and to him who has no might he increases strength.
Even youths shall faint and be weary,
and young men shall fall exhausted;
but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength;
they shall mount up with wings like eagles;
they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint. - Isaiah 40:28-31
With those words, I note that I received an email in my inbox today. I pulled up the email from my home church back in Colorado and my pastor had signed the email the way he always has, with the words: God is good!
God is truly in charge and even though it may not always seem like it to us, his way is truly good.
I cannot thank everyone enough who has been praying for my wife and I, and also those who have been financially helping support us in the cost of seminary. God's blessings!