Thursday, May 1, 2014

Big Changes

I've been really slack in blogging, but there's an explanation. I've changed vocations. I've left my job (well not really, I'm on long service leave at the minute) and am now a full-time student studying theology. If you don't know what theology is, it's studying to do full-time pastoral ministry. I'm going to try and be more regular with my blogs, since we're encouraged to reflect, and this is a good medium to reflect. For me anyway. So here's my first entry:

I haven't been able to shake off something our SDA History lecturer discussed the other day. He rattled off his understanding of higher education and the views he had as a child. Namely, acquiring a higher education would corrupt his spirituality, and there was no need to acquire given the imminent return of Christ. 

This was the same attitude our pioneers had, only they had a personal vendetta against the scholars since they had strong arguments against them when they had specified a time in history when Christ would return. That left a bad taste in their mouths, because decades later they still didn't quite encourage higher education amongst their peoples. But they finally came around, and we now have SDA academics around the globe.

But it's funny, I shared the same attitudes as my lecturer did. Earlier in my childhood I wanted to go to uni, but as I got to high school, I started to formulate in my incredibly matured 15 year old brain (sarcasm intended) that I probably wouldn't need a uni degree to get through life (afterall Biggie Smalls and Tupac didn't go Uni). By the time I gave my life to Christ, I was convinced that the education system had apostatised and that I needed to remain pure. I second guessed any person that had some type of academic credential. They seemed to always question things, and questioning things is bad.....very bad. So because of their lack of ability to see things as black and white, I painted all higher educated people with the same brush...little did I know it was a toothbrush.

But, here I am,an adult student, and loving every class, research, students and the insight that comes with these studies (note I didn't list the fees, and deadlines). I'm seeing my Jesus in a new way, bigger, deeper, stronger, smarter and there's heaps more to learn and experience. I shared this with Tulaga Aiolupotea in one of our may Nappy Valley conversations, and asked what he thought. He opened up with Peter and Paul, comparing the two leaders as one getting his education straight from Christ and on-the-job training, and then there's Paul, a well-experienced academic (and then some) who's responsible for writing more than half of the New Testament.

Yes, my brain is already opening up to new ideas although it's only first semester. I'll probably be the guy you'll be questioning whether I've defected from the faith. I'm not saying I'll be like Paul, I relate more to Peter......but who knows? I never expected to be here, so God-willing, I could be a Paul! (with wife and kids though). Whether you're going to get higher-education or not, there's ample supply to learn and experience more. He came to give us life, and life abundant! So any of my friends that have been twiddling their thumbs on this, and you know you're meant to be here, don't hesitate to drop me a line, I'm more than happy to share my depth of half a semester knowledge. No seriously, I got enough people to back me up that you can poke a stick at. 

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