Last weekend, that is … the April 1st one.
So, I forgot one little item about the trip out. There was actually a place that had a huge billboard advertising America’s worst apple pie. Now, these guys are masters of reverse psychology because I wanted nothing more than to stop and see how awful this pie must be. But, it was getting late and it was dark and it was raining.
Saturday morning I escaped the cacophony of the hotel with its birds and dogs and various assorted noises, but I was actually up early. I had plenty of time to hit a great little local coffee shop called George House. It was odd being there by myself – in the morning much less. In the past, I have been there with my youth group kids after a day at IMPACT (a summer conference held by the Churches of God, General Conference) where we would talk for hours about everything from the cute guy one of them spotted somewhere that day to college plans to theological issues of all stripes.
After a little more touring of downtown Findlay, I finally landed at Winebrenner Theological Seminary. We weren’t more than a few minutes into a presentation by the president of the seminary until I realized that this is indeed where God wants me to be. He talked about the ways God speaks to us through circumstances, through His word and through other people. I realized then that He has been doing just that with me for a few years now.
The thought was only reinforced in the class I attended which not only discussed a topic in which I am highly interested (the Celtic model of evangelism) but also was taught by the professor who will be overseeing the specialty in the program in which I was interested.
They broke us into small groups for the day and I was in a group privileged to be led by the seminary president, Dr. Draper (but I would bet the other groups thought they were privileged to have the leaders they had as well). He listened to all we had to say and was very affirming when we explained our thoughts, our vision, etc.
Finally, as the visit time drew to a close, we had lunch. By now, I was getting a bit chilly (I think the air conditioning was on) so I sat in what passed for sunlight under a skylight near the giant cross. A few other folks from my small group joined me as did a professor who, as it turned out, is the director of the program in which I hope to enroll. I loved the visit and really liked the people. In fact, just this evening I checked a book out of the library that the professor in the sample class recommended.
The coolest part, though, was the way back when I had all the time in the world to worship God in my car as I traveled back to Pennsylvania. I also had a lot of time to think back over the day and process everything everyone talked about all day and how it meshed with what I envision as the future of my ministry and service to God.
I was listening to a relatively new song from Kristian Stanfill, who leads worship at 7:22 in Atlanta and was also at Passion 06, and thinking about how Dr. Draper was telling us about the ways God speaks to us. As those thoughts tumbled through my head, a lyric from the song just seemed to jump out at me – just like Dr. Draper described.
It’s time to move along
I hear You calling me
To bigger better dreams
You, You give me strength
You give me everything I need
help my eyes to see
NOTE: When I was editing this post from an old blog to transfer to this blog, I tried and tried to find the song that had these lyrics. I had no luck at all. I may have the wrong song, but nothing comes up for these lyrics in Google. If anyone reading this in the future has any idea, let me know what it is in the comments.