Four years after graduating with my bachelor's degree, I have finally found my way back into school. Yes, it is official: I'm a student again! For a long time it did not occur to me that I would ever need or want to go to seminary. Life was all about the destination for me. Getting to the "next step" was so important that I did not want to do anything that would consume too much extra time along the way. My undergraduate studies seemed more than adequate to launch me into the ministry. After a few years of full time ministry, however, and a few lessons in the school of hard knocks, I began to reconsider the idea that maybe God had more training for me. Realizing that I was very much single and capable of moving anywhere I needed to, I began to consider the possibility of attending seminary.
Acquiring a bachelor's degree from an unaccredited institution is not exactly the surest step towards getting into a good seminary, I soon learned. The initial closed doors caused me to pray that if God wanted me to study in seminary that He would make a way for me.
Right around the same time, Bethel University in St. Paul, Minnesota, was courting the Chancellor of my school to be on their Board of Directors. Through this connection, God opened the doors of Bethel Seminary to Magdalen College graduates. The only problem, however, was that having lived in Minneapolis for 5 years, I was more than ready to move. It seemed time to try a different part of the country.
That same summer, a road trip through the American West exposed me to the beautiful city of San Diego. My one afternoon in San Diego caused me to exclaim that I wished that there was a good seminary there so that I would have a good excuse to move there. After returning to Minneapolis, my mother and I set aside a day to pray and fast about the seminary decision. While in prayer, it occured to me that I seemed to recall Bethel having extension campuses somewhere. Grabbing my computer, I navigated to their website and could hardly believe it when I found that their extension campus was in San Diego!
A year and a half later, with a lot of decision making, a few months at home, and a wonderful year long experience in Alaska all under the bridge, I am finally hear and studying again! I'm confident that this is what God is using to prepare me for ongoing ministry for His kingdom.