A post by guest blogger, Glen Dornsife, M.Div. student at Northeastern Seminary.
The other day I ran into an old acquaintance in one of my seminary classes. We used to be a part of the same small group community within our church. I didn’t remember him being a seminary student at the time, and was surprised to see him sitting next to me that night. I asked what he was doing, and he proudly stated he was exploring the options available to him. He decided that auditing a class (An awesome one at that—Biblical Worldview, taught By Dr. J. Richard Middleton) was the best available option he had to go deeper into the Word.
I mentioned that I had remembered him sharing with me how he desired to go deeper into God’s word a while back, but wasn’t even sure of where to start. He wanted to be challenged and to understand more about the Bible, God, and all our faith’s mysteries. I told him it was an encouragement to me to see him follow through on his desire to know God more. He mentioned how even though he loved the Church he didn’t feel like a Sunday service or mid-week program offered an opportunity like this one!
I couldn’t agree more with his statement. In fact, one of the main reasons I enrolled in seminary was because at the end of the day I felt unsatisfied, unchallenged in my pursuit. Quiet time. Church. Volunteering. Repeat. Most of us remain in the dark when it comes to understanding who God is and what the Bible actually says. We deny our hearts the very one it grieves to see, hear, and understand—the mysterious Hidden who formed and fashioned our very lives. For me, attending seminary is leading me down a path to a richer and fuller understanding of God, the Bible, and my faith journey.
So, to answer the question – is Seminary for you? I came up with three things to consider as indicators that seminary may be for you.
1) You desire to know God more.
2) You want to discover the call of God on your life.
3) God created you to be part of a royal priesthood—seminary is not merely for the peeps behind pulpits. Seminary is for everyone, because everyone is a royal priest.
The Hidden is not just a feeling or a hunch, thoughts or mere experiences we have. The Hidden was meant to be discovered. All of us are inclined to believe there is something, someone out there, or in us. Something transcendent, eternal. Something that matters. A god, the God. The Hidden has become the quest all humans have embarked on, whether admitted or not, to find, discover, and encounter the reality we so often can’t perceive. To come to the place of knowing, our purpose, our Maker – the Hidden, yet so visible God. (Though I have molded it to my own understanding, I can’t take credit for the idea of the Hidden—see “The Priesthood of Humanity” by Countryman, a current required reading for class.)
Seminary creates a wonderful space for people to explore the rich realities often hidden or unexplained by everyday life. They are devoted to “revealing, explaining, and teaching” all they know about the Hidden. There is no greater opportunity to be “led, taught, and illuminated” about God than at seminary. Northeastern Seminary to be exact!
Stop sitting in the dark and come join us. Discover that seminary is for you!
Glen Dornsife, M.Div.