Monday, December 31, 2012

Reflections on 2012...

Some awful things happened in 2012, including the horrific mass shootings in Seattle; Portland; Oakland; Aurora, CO; Minneapolis; Oak Creek, WI and Newtown, CT; as well as the ever-present societal plagues of poverty, violence, corruption, discrimination and political BS. But beside all that, I had a fantastic year in 2012:

* I transferred from George Fox Evangelical Seminary to the Earlham School of Religion and changed my Master's from Divinity to Religion (which will enable me to emphasize Quaker studies and position me to pursue a Ph.D).

* My explorations of theology have been extremely rewarding. This year, in addition to embarking on formal Quaker studies, I discovered Process Theology, which is fascinating.

* My committment to being an advocate for LGBT people in the church has increased exponentially. I made several new friends this year who have encouraged me greatly in this regard.

* I turned a half-century old. I find that I like being an old guy. I only wish that when I was younger I had known the things I know now.

* I finally finished writing my "theological Science Fiction" novella. I don't know if it's any good, but it felt good to have completed it.

* I am incredibly proud of my wife, who completed the first year-long module of 'Way of the Spirit' (an intensive Quaker-based program for spiritual development) and has signed up for the second year-long module. Both Carla and I continue to learn and grow and I am so grateful that we continue to grow together.

* I am incredibly proud of my son, who is now living in Hannover, Germany and working as a physicist. He is a remarkable young man. Carla and I also really like his girlfriend! A highlight this year was getting to visit them both in Germany (even though it concluded with the trauma of Carla breaking a leg--which she now looks back on as an experience from which she learned a great deal).

* I am thankful for my family and friends (including Facebook friends!) and am grateful to be part of a faith community that is so genuine and life-giving!

* Nearly 30 years ago I had an encounter with the Living God and became a follow of Jesus. In all the years since then, God's presence has not left me. 2012 was no exception. Each day is a gift! I truly believe that the world is gradually becoming a better place and I am excited to be part of it! As Martin Luther King, Jr. often said (quoting the 19th-century Unitarian minister and abolitionist Theodore Parker) "the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice."


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