Yes, I am still alive, just incredibly busy. I do apologize for not posting in a long time, but I’ve been so crazy busy with classes and readings that I’ve barely had enough time to sleep, much less post on here. I’m sorry. I’ll try to be better from now on.
Anyways, it’s time for some updates. Classes are really great, and I love all of my professors (even if some of them, like Dr. Priebe and Dr. Nessan, scare the heck out of me) and my adviser,Susan Ebertz, is amazing! I would have to say the classes here have been extremely interesting and have already made me question some things in new and exciting ways. I even like my Foundations of the Church class, and I usually HATE history!
As far as my job, I’m working up to ten hours a week in the Library (the limit for a Grad student) checking out books, getting things ready for the book sale, and (OH SO MUCH FUN!!!) doing all the statistics for the library. Note the sarcasm. Yeah, they haven’t been done since about April of last year (some even earlier than that) and apparently there are nine different categories of stats to compile. But I’ve already finished three, so only six more to go! No wonder Susan loves me!
The last two weekends I was lucky enough to return home and visit with some (though sadly, not all) of my friends and family. I was able to return for these two Sundays to St. John Lutheran in De Pere, and worship with the amazing community there. I even managed to help out with the church picnic on the 11th, and enjoyed a lovely summer day full of laughter and celebration, mixed with silence and reflection in honor of those who were affected by the 9/11 incident ten years ago.
Spending those two weekends back home made me realize even more how lucky I am to be a part of so many amazing communities. Both back home and here in Dubuque. I hope to expand those communities as well since I am now a confirmation guide at Lord of Life church here. I also look forward to having regular conversations with a lovely couple here that are unable to make it to church. Pastor John suggested them to me for a class assignment, but I can’t wait to hear more about their lives, their faith stories, and be shaped by their influence.
As for on campus, I have been having a blast here with the other Juniors and have started to get to know the Middlers and Seniors as well. All great people. I honestly can’t say there’s anyone here that I don’t like. Perhaps some people click with my personality better than others, but it’s so great being surrounded by such caring, compassionate people. What’s even better is that when I’m freaking out about classes or worrying about how I’m ever going to pay for everything, there’s always people around that will listen, not to mention a good chunk of people who are feeling the same way.
We’ve shared so many ups and downs together, questioned our callings and reinforced the callings of others, laughed, cried, and prayed together. I can see why so many people graduate from Wartburg and remain closely connected with their classmates long after leaving this place. In fact, we just had the class of (help me out Wartburgers, was it ’59?) here for a reunion. Evan after half a century, they’re still connected to one another.
Which makes me wonder… how can I translate that strong sense of community to my first call? How will I manage to forge strong and healthy relationships, encourage spiritual growth, get more reserved people to speak up and join in? All while making sure I don’t stretch myself too thin and burn out? I guess I have four more years to find the answer, and if there is an answer to be found, I’m sure it can be found here.
In the meantime, I’d like to leave you with this…
You have been saved by grace through faith. This has already been done for you. You can’t buy your way to heaven, no matter how much money you have. And worrying about worldly things isn’t going to make it better. Instead, why not focus on the good for once? Now… how are you going to celebrate that with others?
As Always, God Bless!