Saturday, May 15, 2010

Poached Eggs

I love poached eggs, so that is what I am eating. I was going to write this post while I waited for them, but the computer went haywire for just the wrong amount of time.

Today: Seeing someone for spiritual direction, getting my hair cut, maybe going to mass. Maybe not, as it has been something of a distraction lately that I cannot receive communion there. OK, more than a distraction. Last week I left in the middle. It's been a haven for me for nearly two years, but not right now.

Tomorrow: two church services, at one of which I am preaching. That means I have a sermon to finish.

Monday: a long and challenging meeting.

Tuesday: a quiz, which means I have some studying to do.

And then: everything cleared with a week left in which to write my Volf paper, which is pretty well planned. If no one gets sick or hurt or dies, I am in pretty good shape.

I've been thinking a lot about what I've learned in seminary. Three years, lots of lectures and discussions and tests and papers. Here are a couple of the big things:

Professor in casual conversation: When I preach the gospels, I usually steer clear of contemporary illustrations. The stories pretty much tell themselves. When I preach the Epistles, then I use a lot of illustration.

Professor in class which I am secretly (and "illegally," as it turns out, auditing): The text itself is thin and underdetermined. What theologians do is fill in the blanks, of which there are many.

Notice the contexts in which I heard two of the main things I am taking with me.

Eggs consumed. Onward. Or downward, to the basement where laundry awaits.


  1. Sometimes I wonder if having classes is the excuse to create a place where such conversations can happen. More learning happens outside the "official" class walls, than in.

    Peace be with you!

  2. In my academic graduate program, some of the most important conversations are those that take place between the student and her/his examination professors in their offices preparing for exams. It is one on one discussing literature both parties know well and leads all sorts of places that one cannot allow in class discussion just because of the constraints of class.

    In church, one of the best conversations we've had was after a class with the Pastor when we started by asking a simple question (about children and communion) and ended with a conversation that has me prepared to move forward with Baptism for my children (something that as a refugee from the evangelical world I never thought I would do.) From my lay person perspective, I think it's as important to make those spaces in the church as it seems to be in seminary or grad school.

    And I hope you enjoyed your eggs. I poached eggs for the family Thursday night and they came out perfectly--every one of them--and I'm about as proud of that as anything I've done lately.

  3. A busy week ahead of you. Thinking of you with lots of love.

  4. The communion issue is one of the few problems I have with Mass, and with becoming Catholic, which I am often really tempted to do.
    "...If no one gets sick or hurt or dies, I am in pretty good shape." Doesn't that just about say it for life? I love the way you put this.

    I'm guessing that you have gained a great deal from seminary that is probably gestating - or fermenting, or developing, or whatever you want to call it - deep within you. But I like those two simple thoughts that you summarized.

    Do whatever you are led to do with respect to the graduation. You deserve to celebrate this milestone any way you feel is right at the time. It's YOUR graduation.
    Sending love to you.