The village of Ada has suddenly become a very busy place! The students have all returned to campus, making Ada (and ONU) a bustling little hive of activity over the last several days. And, my life has moved to a decidedly busier tempo as a result. Added to that, Rebecca and Daniel have started at their new school, and Kelly has begun her classed towards certification as a middle-childhood teacher!
Back to school time has always been one of my favorite times of the year. When I was a child, I loved school, and going back to classes meant that I could see my friends and favorite teachers again, and embark on new adventures as I learned new things about the world around me. (Yes, I was a nerd–and I still am, and I’m proud of it!) In college, the start of a new school year meant that I got to get back to my friends, fraternity brothers, and professors, and that a new year of speech competition was just around the corner! And, in seminary, the start of a new school year meant that I was one step closer to fulfilling the call to ministry that I had been hearing since I was 15 years old.
Today, back to school takes on a new meaning. Now, it means that there are many opportunities for me to be in ministry–meeting new students, welcoming returning students back to campus (and meeting them for the first time, since this is my first year!), and getting acquainted with the rituals and traditions of this campus. Campus ministry is an exciting line of work–every day is a little different than the one before, and I am learning that there is no “typical” day for a university chaplain. But, through it all, there is the opportunity to help others learn that one’s years in college are not just about books and classes and exams (although they are primarily about those things!), but that one can come to grow as a person, in character, morals, and faith through all the experiences that college life brings with it.
So, happy back to school time! Enjoy these last few days of summer, as we begin to turn into the autumn of the year, and life takes on a different pace. If you’re on campus, don’t forget to take some time out of your day to connect with God, and if you’re not on campus, take some time to reflect what life was like when you were, and how it made you who you are today.
School time blessings,