Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Chasing the End of the World

Rode the motorcycle this morning on the nice straightaway at Shelby Farms. Clouds were shrouding the sun and cast a nice, calm glow through my shield and glasses. One of my favorite things to do since college is to ride west and look at the horizon and the shifting colors and mazes of the sky. This morning as I was riding eastward I glanced in the side views as the west was darkened but beginning to wake up. I whispered to myself, "There's something about moving westward; it's like chasing the end of the world." Let me begin there.

I have felt for several years that I'm in a pursuit of something meaningful, powerful and noble. Though I would love to slay a dragon I realize it is not that. Anyway, I have felt for a while that God was slowly and methodically calibrating and recalibrating my heart, mind and values toward something that I would spend the rest of my life cultivating. Through job searches, job changes, massive transitions from university, to seminary, to working multiple jobs, to moving across country to perplexing disappointment - it has felt like I was moving westward; chasing the end of the world. Life is a mystery, no?

Well, I have begun the process of pursuing ordination in the PCA (Presbyterian Church in America). After almost a year of deliberation and conferring with those who know me well and books, books, books I decided that as far as theology goes, the PCA is the better fit. Specifically covenant + reformed theology and church governance (elders and deacons). I could possibly write a lot on each one of those, but for brevity's sake I won't.

Next step is licensure, which means I take 3-4 exams on a wide swath of topics. This will then give me the clearance to preach in the PCA and then pursue ordination. I'm very happy about this decision; it's been a very tough road, venturing out into the winding and disorienting wilderness of parts unknown. And after 5 years of thinking, studying, talking, praying and occassional fasting God has been generous to open up a wide vista in front of me. And there I am able to see the goodness that is to be enjoyed.

We have found a great PCA Church, Redeemer that's about 5 minutes from our house. Violet loves it and Barb and I are thrilled to be a part of what God is doing there. Years ago if you were to have asked me, "What do you hope for?" I would've given you an answer that is very similar to what Redeemer is - theologically conservative and missionally motivated. There's a lot more to it than that, and I hope to add more later on, but what God is doing in Redeemer is wonderful and exciting.

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