Beloved Old Testament Professors, the end of Seminary and Psalm 19
Dr. Schultz with me here in Chorazin, Israel
Carl Schultz was the professor of Old Testament at Houghton College while I was a student there, and has been a very important man in my life. He kindled my love of scripture and Old Testament to what it is today. He was full of energy, despite the fact that when I came to Houghton he was well into his seventies. At the beginning of every class, when the first class period came to an end he would remind us to come early to the next class session. “I will be handing out the seating chart next class” he would say, “so get here early to pick out your seat. For the Calvinists among us, you will have the seat God picked out for you from the beginning of time.” He said this with his voice reaching a crescendo during the punch line. It was always the same joke, the same inflection. He ended his classes the same way too. Each class session began with prayer, which ended with Psalm 19 “may the meditations of our hearts be pleasing and acceptable to you, O Lord, our rock and our redeemer.” On the final session of the class his prayer would include something like “We thank you that life has its times, that even academia has its seasons” and then he would ask God’s blessing upon us all. His prayer was a gift, of framing and marking time of the four years of college.
A season of my life has ended with my graduation from Luther Seminary with a Masters of Divinity degree. I am concluding not only four years of seminary, but a theological education that began as an undergrad. My academic preparation for ministry is over. There are people and lessons that I will take with me in my memory as I leave this place. Next month Rachel and I will be leaving Minnesota, moving to our native New York to live with family and be closer to Northeastern Pennsylvania as the call process continues to unfold. For us this is a new season and we are looking forward to what God has in store for us. We are also eager to renew relationships and friendships with people we left behind in order to come to Luther for four years. Our goal had been to go "back east" when all was said and done, and here we are four years later on the cusp of doing just that. During all of this I have come to feel that this blog has come to its conclusion. I started this blog to post sermons and musings from seminary and it has served that purpose admirably. It helped mark the times and seasons of seminary's academic and spiritual life which has now come to a close.