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Week one of seminary is in the books. And I love it! It was the most challenging, inspiring, God–honoring and adventurous week that I can recall. Two works of art, one a book, the other a song, kept going through my head as the week began.

hobbitI think that I felt not unlike Bilbo Baggins in the first chapter of The Hobbit. Hobbits didn’t do adventures. I generally don’t like being out of my comfort zone. Seems to me that (without going back and reading it) that for various reasons, Bilbo did not consider himself fit for an adventure, especially one that involved dragons! Yet he went.

When I thought of Smaug (the dragon in The Hobbit), I thought, what do I face? This verse from Ephesians immediately came to mind: For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but  against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places (Ephesians 6:12). And then I thought, Come on, aren’t you being a bit dramatic? But no, I don’t think so. If we believe in the God of heaven, then we have to believe in Satan too, depicted as a dragon in Scripture—more cunning and fierce than Smaug ever dreamed of being.

I also thought of Steven Curtis Chapman’s song, The Great Adventure (do you see a theme?). The beginning lyrics are:

Started out this morning in the usual way
Chasing thoughts inside my head
I thought I had to do today
Another time around the circle
Try to make it better than the last
I opened up the Bible
And I read about me
Said I’d been a prisoner
And God’s Grace had set me free
And somewhere between the pages,
It hit me like a lightning bolt
I saw a big frontier in front of me
And I heard somebody say ‘Let’s go!’

Saddle up your horses
We’ve got a trail to blaze
Through the yonder of God’s Amazing grace
Let’s follow our leader into the Glorious unknown
This is the life like no other whoa whoa,
This is The Great Adventure

As I drove to the seminary, I cued up this song and listened to it twice.

Before classes began, I sat on the porch of Norton Hall and I read this from Psalm 130:

I wait for the Lord, my soul waits
and in His word I hope;
soul waits for the Lord
more than watchmen for the morning,
more than watchmen for the morning.

In my journal I recorded:

On this beautiful morning of beginnings, my soul does wait for the Lord. Waiting with anticipation on what this day will bring. Waiting to see where this will lead. What do you want me to do, O Lord? What is your plan for me, for Jan and I, post seminary?

He has not answered me yet and I’m not expecting an answer for some time to come. The answer will come in His timing and I suspect though experiences and people in the next three years. I also expect it will be an adventure and…

I remain confident of this:
I will see the goodness of the Lord
in the land of the living.
Wait for the Lord;
be strong and take heart
and wait for the Lord. 1

1 Psalm 27:13, 14 (NIV)