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New Moves

Posted by on Sep 15, 2010

New Moves

First off; a huge “Thank You!” for the gift of my incredible Sabbatical. It was an amazing, transformative, confirming, and refocusing time.

The first week, I was struck with how little people needed me, how irrelevant I felt, and how empty it was to just be home…not “working”…REALITY was a big word for me that first week. It was like I was able to see reality more clearly than ever before, and most of it wasn’t pretty.

The second week, was camping with the fam, and that was totally fun. The tough feelings of the week before seemed to mesh with the goodness of God’s grace and light, and I began to really rest in the moments of vacation and family-time.

The third week was a time of inspiration! A children’s book with the lyrics of Bob Dylan’s song “Forever Young” captured my heart in crazy ways. I began to see my music as only one facet of a diverse ministry that God wanted to bring into my life, and when I viewed it that way (instead of my everything, or my identity) I got really inspired, seeing visions of future ministry, and writing four songs in about an hour!

The last week was marked by my 24-hour solo, silent retreat along the coastline of San Clemente.  It was a powerful time as I felt God invite me, personally, to the new adventure He has planned.  Even though I still have no idea what it is, I have a deep sense of excitement and hope in following the God of loving surprises!

Which leads me to my big surprise:  I’m going…BACK TO SCHOOL!!!

It’s true!  This month, I followed my first-ever Sabbatical with another first; graduate school.  I was accepted, along with only 30 other students, into Biola’s Masters program in Spiritual Formation.  Here is the link all about the school and the degree program:

www.biola.edu/spiritualformation

I have been a student for two weeks now, and I am loving every minute!  I can’t believe I get to do this!!!  Heidi has been an encouraging supporter of the idea ever since it begin to grow last year as a small stirring.  I looked at other schools included Fuller, Vanguard, and Azusa, but after talking to pastor friends and other leaders in the field, I set my sights on Talbot Seminary at Biola.  I’m so honored to have been accepted, and I’m cherishing this experience.  It is a three-year program in Spiritual Formation and Soul Care – an intense study of how people grow by the work of the Spirit (including myself), and how to lead others in true growth and ongoing, vibrant relationship with Jesus.  It will be interesting to see how God weaves my passion for this subject together with all the other Callings He’s placed in my life!  The classes are only on Mondays so far, so I’m adjusting my touring schedule accordingly and praying for God’s direction in it all…

Thanks for your continued prayers, as I discern these new moves of the Spirit.

Stumbling forward,

Justin

4 Comments

  1. So thankful for your great sabbatical! And new and exciting perspective and direction as well . . . Lord continue His blessings upon your dear family!

  2. A new chapter begins. “Good luck” sounds trite and inadequate , I think I’ll wish you Godspeed.

  3. Great to hear about the sabbatical and going to school – sounds like a great program!

  4. He is an awesome God. When we think we’ve got it all figured out He opens the door to show us how big He truly is and how much more he has for us than we could ever ask or imagine. He is good. God bless you and your family as you have been to others.

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