It’s been about 15 years since I sat in a classroom as a student, but this past week I returned. I’m now a student in the Doctor of Ministry program at Logsdon Theological Seminary in Abilene, Texas, and it was a great initial experience.
When I began work on my doctorate back in the ’90s, my kids were younger and I tried to do it under the family radar. Generally, I did not begin work on the my readings or writings until the kids and usually my wife were in bed. This time, three of my kids are grown and two of them are close to being grown, and they have been so supportive, expressing gladness that I’m doing this. They know how important learning, growing and ministering are to me, and their encouragement is simply one of the greatest blessings in this venture.
Assuming I will graduate in three years, I’ll be 58 years old. My dad had retired at age 57, but in today’s world that is just not realistic. Of course, Dad has continued “working” and still works hard at age 84 as a rancher. At whatever age we begin to draw retirement income, there is a very real sense in which true retirement only comes with incapacity or death. So while I’ll graduate at an age at which I could retire, I have no intention of retiring. I just now feel like I’m getting rolling.
And to my family and all those who have encouraged me in this, I say a great big, “Thank you. You are part of my life, and my life would be immeasurably less without each of you.”