Friday, September 4, 2009

Gay Guy in Seminary: Day 19 (The Examine)

Today was the last day of orientation and we had a "retreat" type day to re-energize. The first thing we did was a reflective/meditative/prayer type exercise called "The Examine." You start but thinking about your day or week, in our case we used orientation week, and you make a list of all the events that really stood out to you for that time period. You take about five or ten minutes to just sit quietly and reflect on those events that had some kind of an impact. Next, you go through the list and mark each item as good, bad or both. Good things are events that re-energized you, made you feel good and brought you closer to God. Bad things would be events that were draining and drew you away from God. The last step is to review your list and see how the different things impacted you and to pray and meditate over it.

I noticed that I didn't have many negative things on my list; just the heat and then one or two random incidents that I wasn't really involved with. As I looked at the list, I noticed how many of the items were conversations I had had with people here. They seemed to have occurred on almost a daily basis and were deep and loving helpful conversations. As anyone following this blog should know, I have been getting a pretty heavy dose of reality over here. The transition from home to San Anselmo has for the most part been pretty uneventful, and the only thing that I can attribute that too is the careful planning of God. I had a pretty decent support system set up before I even moved, and as I get to know the other members of my in-coming class, I know that network is going to continue to grow. It's like God understood how much I was going to have to be dealing with and the last thing I needed was the stress of living in a new place away from my family and friends, so he arranged for that stress to be virtually non-existent.

On top of that, He kept me in the dark about all this conservative/liberal crap, so I wasn't even thinking about that until a few days ago. I mean really, if I had known, what good would it have done other than stress me out over something I have no control over? I'm glad God is in charge of my life, cuz I could never plan things out this well.

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