I can’t believe that September is almost over. I have barely had time to write anything more than the necessary papers and essays. We’ve started Hermeneutics 1 and Evangelism in a Postmodern World. Both of these classes are intense and exciting, challenging every area and corner of our thinking. If I had to use a word or two to describe the first month and a half, I’d say conviction and challenge fit the description. In one of our small groups we spoke of God “peeling away at the layers” of our worldview to reveal what’s really going on. But if you really look at the situation, how could it be any other way? We are in class for several hours being exposed to the Word of God and in homework studying the Word as well. With that much truth being poured out in our lives, how could it not be painful?! My “not-enoughness” (as George Walker would say) is very evident. The “peeling back” of layers reminds me of C.S. Lewis’ “The Voyage of the Dawn Treader” and when Eustace turned into a dragon. The only way for him to truly change from being a monster was for Aslan to use his claws to rip away the layers of scales. I always thought it was the grossest description, but it’s so true! There is pain in becoming conformed to the image of Christ.
Well, the school year truly feels like it’s in full swing as Payton and I have become involved in campus activities. I signed up to help with the Koren students language study program. I have my first session today. We don’t have to bring any material, just listen and work with them on whatever they need to focus on. I’m excited to begin cross-cultural training even in this small way! Payton and I both signed up for intramural volleyball, which is great. The leadership here at NTBI views sports just as important in training as our classes. They feel it’s a great way to watch us interact with others, especially because it’s a competitive setting. I’ve never had this much fun playing a sport–everyone is gracious and excited to learn together. It’s seriously weird to play and feel encouraged after a game of volleyball!!
Thanks for praying about our decision of where to go to church. Payton and I decided that we’d head to my parents on the weekend and stay for church on Sunday morning. I love soaking up time with my whole family after not seeing much of them while I was in Colorado. Being a part of Warrendale Community Church again is a blessing indeed! I never imagined that studying the Word of God every day for hours would not fill me up to overflowing–I have felt so abundantly filled every Sunday after hearing the Bible preached and being in fellowship. Now, in winter, the hour or so trek to Detroit may not happen, but we’ll try to go with it until it’s impossible.
Another prayer request is for our living situation. Currently we have no running water and have to fetch it from the utility closet. Well, the city came and inspected the school and may be asking for some changes. They don’t have a problem putting in running water, but the drainage is the real problem in a building this old (1930’s maybe?). By Christmas we’ll know whether or not we’ll be able to cook in our apartments still. If we weren’t allowed to cook anymore, they’d take our stoves, water and makeshift sinks and we’d have to eat in the dining hall. First of all, it’s more expensive to eat in the dining hall, second it’s not very um…well, let’s just say it’s cafeteria food. Pray for mercy with the city that the school would have some time to make changes if necessary. And pray that there’d be money if repairs need to be made. There are a few couples who might need to move off campus if it came down to it. Just pray for wisdom and provision for the school.
Here are some pictures of our place (they are a little old, it’s cleaner now…well, sometimes). I’ll take some new ones later: