Thursday, August 16, 2007

Dallas: Postponed

Sorry it's been practically a century since the last post. Many things have been going on recently, namely, the new job has started. Things are busy. I am definitely enjoying having my own place to live and can't wait until the roommates move in (Kate Montana & Brynne Edwards)!! I spend most of the day here at the house with the family, or just Abigail (the youngest). We do things like clean up, make sure everything is ready for when everyone comes home, run errands, and play. Three of the four who are in school started at Legacy this week. The oldest will start middle school in one more week.

Things have been busy with the job, but so good. I've had ample opportunity to catch up with close friends back in LA, too. Church was amazing (of course) on Sunday; thanks Dr. Behle! I left thinking that I wanted to get a master's degree in Philosophy now. Which brings us around to the topic: Dallas. Many of you know that I had planned on starting grad work at DTS right away. And the whole time I was in Papua New Guinea I kept telling the missionaries and friends there my "plan" on doing grad work--starting part-time and finishing full-time in a few years. But the more I repeated it, the more I thought about it.

And the more I thought about it, I talked to other missionaries about it.

And the more I talked with seasoned missionaries about it, the more I found myself praying about the decision.

And the more I prayed about the decision, the more I was convinced that this is not the right time for Dallas in my life.

Not only did I begin to realize the realities of my new job and living in a completely different and new way than every, but I also realized how much time I want to spend on another degree in Biblical Studies--or anything for that matter. The whole point of being a student at Dallas is to study the Bible more than I had studied it at Master's. I don't want to breeze through the classes. I want to take expository classes and not counseling classes. I want to learn about how Habakkuk or Jeremiah did missions. Not Hudson Taylor or Mary Baker Eddy. Those things are all good and great to study, and I have definitely taken advantage of time spent studying them at Master's. But I'm ready for just straight Bible.

That's where one of the main thoughts lies: Dallas will not allow me to be in the program I desire to be in. Still. They have very legit reasons for this, and the staff I have talked to about the subject have been nothing less than listening and mindful. I really appreciate all that they have done for me. But at the end of the day, we still do not see eye-to-eye regarding my particular education. This has been a huge factor in the deciding process. Before going to Papua New Guinea I was ready to just "deal" with this difference and pursue the program that Dallas thought best fit for me.

However, in spending time with seasoned missionaries who have been through Bible education and have seen entire tribes to salvation, I really questioned the necessity of a master's degree in Biblical studies. Many of the missionaries were SO encouraging and told me more of the realities of educational needs before coming to the field full-time. Guess what. My background already meets it. Their advice to me was: just come. We need people now. You understand all that is necessary to present the gospel to a tribe. New Tribes will train and equip you for the parts you don't yet know or understand (the missionary training aspect of it).

Alas, talking to these missionaries really made me think and pray more about going to Dallas, or even pursuing another degree at all. None of the missionaries necessarily discouraged going to Dallas or pursuing grad work. But they all definitely encouraged me to get to the field ASAP.

The first week I was home from Papua New Guinea I called and talked to my advisor at Dallas and explained the situation to him. We decided that postponement until January was the best decision for now, and we will be thinking and praying through this semester for the January decision.

That's that. I am not at Dallas...yet.

1 comment:

Becca said...

hey kate! good to read your thoughts on how you came to the decision not to go to dallas (at least not yet maybe). just wanted to say hi! :)