Quarterly Update: We’re heading to Scotland
We are heading to Scotland. After a significant discernment process we’ve decided to pursue the opportunity to do a doctorate in Biblical Studies at the University of St Andrews. We passed up on this opportunity two years ago, wanting to immerse ourselves in a church community that was living out what we are interested in learning about God’s presence and everyday life in the Spirit. Bethel Church has turned out being the perfect fit for the questions we were asking and what we wanted to learn.
For the last year and half I’ve been working toward a doctorate while here in Redding and while its been very beneficial, the further I progressed the clearer it became I would be spending long hours, effort and resources on something other than what I most wanted to research. I was attempting to put biblical scholars like NT Wright in conversation with church and revival leaders like Bill Johnson and others in my previous research proposal. Instead I will now have spent two years immersed among the community of Bethel Church and with this move to Scotland actually study directly with NT Wright and others at the Univ. of St Andrews. In many ways this is coming together better than I originally imagined was possible. So much of what is going on at Bethel needs to be caught (not just taught), lived, breathed and experienced, which we’ve been able to do these past two years. But there is more I want to learn that requires study of the original biblical languages, historical context, methods of interpreting scripture and more, which is best done in an academic setting.
There is a lot to a decision like this. As Ali and I moved through it and all the risks and challenges involved we had a growing assurance the timing was right and this was the specific direction we needed to head in terms of doctoral research. We welcome your prayers as we make this move. There are a lot of logistics involved in relocating our family to the U.K. Our kids (at least the 2.5 who understand what is happening) are a mix of excited, sad and overwhelmed all at the same time. We plan to move to Seattle for four months this summer with the goal of saving money on housing (to offset some of our moving expenses) before making the final move to Scotland in September.
Thank you for all your support and partnership, there is no way we could be doing all this without you.