New Year, New Opportunities
I am now officially half way through my degree program at George Fox Evangelical Seminary. I have been enrolled in the Master of Arts in Ministry Leadership Cohort program and enjoying it very much. It is a Virtual Learning Community where we do most of our work in an online Moodle Teaching and Learning Environment with face-to-face gatherings for eight days once each semester. I have colleagues in my classes from Alaska, Colorado, Ohio (Go Buckeyes!), Pennsylvania, Kentucky, and elsewhere. It is a great group of people to learn with.
Along with my learning, I have continued to do contract work in various forms – from manuscript editing to website creation and the job opportunities for this year look even more promising. This year is looking like a fun year so far with contracts to do website content management, social media strategies and editing a children’s book. Some weeks I put in full-time hours on my contract jobs, other weeks it’s only a few hours – that’s the nature of contract work.
In the volunteer realm, I have been helping with the Youth at Vineyard Community Church in Shoreline since last fall and have taken on some new responsibilities this fall. VCC in Shoreline has been a great place for me to experience missional community and learn what it’s like to be a part of a smaller community church than what I experienced most of my adult life.
This next eighteen months will be a time of discernment for me. I am exploring God’s calling for what I should do when I graduate in the Spring of 2011. I have considered church planting, joining an existing church and helping it grow missionally, further education so I can teach, and writing. It’s possible I may end up doing a little bit of each, but I am seeking God’s direction as to my focus once I have completed my degree.
In the past I have been criticized for “doing too many things” for “not sticking with one thing” and pressured to conform to others expectations of what it means to be a leader. I have also been affirmed in the past for being a “big bucket” person, passionate and devoted to whatever work I am involved with, well connected to the community and according to a Strengths Based Leadership assessment, my leadership strengths are:
- Woo – whatever that means 😉
I am part of a Spiritual Direction group with other women in leadership and this group has been a huge blessing to me. It’s not a support group, it’s not a Bible study. Spiritual Direction is a part of my spiritual formation – an especially important part during this season of discernment.
With the new year, I plan to continue to occasionally blog on things that I am learning in my classes and my experience working with youth in a missional community, as well as my journey of discernment.