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Dear God, Bible college is a really bad idea

It’s not the most respectful of prayers, is it? Yet it was exactly my response when, barely one year into becoming a Christian, God ‘suggested’ that I go to Bible College.

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Frankly, I thought I’d fail the entry criteria. Growing up in a non-Christian home, I have zero in the way of Scripture verses committed to memory. My iPhone’s Bible App has the books listed alphabetically. Reverend Google is often the first place I start because although I know ‘big picture’, I simply fail to remember book, chapter and verse.

I’m the one who’ll be typing in, “law, spirit, don’t do what I want, Paul” to be prompted that it’s Romans 7:14 I’m thinking about.

Take that Leap of Faith from Morling College on Vimeo.

This lack of memory verses is hardly a salvation issue, I know. Yet I was paralysed by the idea of sitting in a class when everyone else was throwing around such in-the-know Bible shorthand.

Plus I’m hardly in my first flush of youth. I have a business. Husband. Kids. Where was the time going to come from to attend Bible college, for goodness sake?

So I had all the excuses. But, in my stumbling way, I do try to be obedient to the Lord. I didn’t know why He wanted me to go – I’ve had no big ‘ta da’ callings outside of preaching, speaking and writing – but He knew, and I knew deep down, that Reverend Google and church Bible study were no longer the only soils necessary for growth.

Plus, if I’m honest, when you fall head-over-heels in love with someone – which is exactly what happened with me and the Jesus-fella, totally unexpectedly back in 2014 – you want to get to know them better. Understand them. Work out what makes them tick so you can contribute to a growing, healthy, long-term relationship. Understand what brings a smile to their face.

Which means this semester, after almost three years of part-time study, I completed my final unit in the Graduate Diploma of Divinity. The majority of my units have been completed via Morling College, based on its flexible, distance-learning, mix of on-campus intensives and the Morling South campus that offers weekly evening classes out of Padstow Baptist Church.

Take the leap of faith and enrol. God will do the rest.

Knowing how hard it is to get around Sydney, especially when taking an evening class, the college set up the Morling South campus at Padstow Baptist Church in order to serve the communities of the Sutherland Shire, St George, Canterbury-Bankstown, and Campbelltown areas. It’s conveniently located only 300 metres from Padstow railway station and bus interchange, and just two minutes from the M5 motorway.

Morling South offered me the best of both: closer to home, a physical cohort, with some extra online units supplementing the face-to-face hours. An on-campus summer intensive allowed me to pick up an extra unit in order to fast-track my studies.

So it turns out that, as so often is the case, God was right and I was not. Bible College was not a bad idea at all. Even if I didn’t recognise it at the time.

And that’s the point. You don’t need all the answers as to why you are enrolling. You don’t have to know exactly what God is up to in your life. It wasn’t like Moses knew how God was going to get the Israelites out of Egypt, after all.

One thing I’ve learned: God always comes through, but often it’s at the last minute when I finally hand it all over to Him. So if this is you, and God is pressing upon you the idea of study – be it Bible, Ministry, Theology, Counselling, Chaplaincy, Education or a Plunge Gap Year after your HSC – just do it.

Take the leap of faith and enrol. God will do the rest.

Morling College has its Open Night on 30th January. Register here. Go along to hear about the College and your options for study. It’s a great opportunity to ask any questions you may have, meet course advisors and have a look around the campus.

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