So today was my first day back in Seminary after the summer break. It really occurred to me today how much I missed the spiritual growth that comes, for me, from Seminary education. Being in a community of faith as I am, even if we are of different denominations, and growing together is something that I simply have not been able to find in my local congregations, though I wish I could. It never ceases to amaze me the stories that people bring to Seminary education. The paths they took in finding their call to ministry. Many folks who I study with indicate that they ran away from the call to ministry for many years. Some indicate that it took years of running before an event triggered something in them that led them back to the church, back to Jesus Christ, and into the ministry. It really is amazing being around these folks and being able to learn from them and grow with them.
Once again, I am the only non-United Methodist in my group and one of the few in the entire school. Certainly, being Mormon, I bring some differing view points to the table when we discuss theology and other things. I always find that I grow from conversations with others. I feel like I have grown a great deal in faith in the past year. Something interesting that I have noticed is that I feel that I am stronger in my faith, I feel like my testimony is stronger, yet I feel much more comfortable in the idea that what I believe or hold to be true might just be wrong. Certainly I do not believe that I am wrong (otherwise, why would I continue attending the LDS church?) but I do not feel like I would have my faith and existence shaken to the point of no return by having something I believe proven wrong.
This is certainly a growing experience for me. I’m far from perfect. I don’t pray as often as I should. I’m horrible at actually fasting on Fast Sunday, though I will say that I give a fast offering anyway. I don’t read my Scriptures every night. But the truth is, I try to improve on that every day. I find it interesting to learn more about other denominations and faith traditions because, eventually, I am going to have to work side by side with these folks and minister to these folks. I am very thankful for the growth that this experience provides and I hope and pray that I can continue to grow in my faith journey every day.