In May 2010 when (7-months-pregnant) Corrie and I made the decision that I would pursue graduate education in Old Testament with the goal of teaching, I made a five-year plan for academic goals. I found this document the other day. Here’s the list of what I had hoped to achieve by the end of 2015:
*Publish two articles in academic journals
*Preach a sermon series
*Present two papers at national conferences
*Present two papers at regional conferences
*Teach courses in two different academic contexts/institutions
*Submit dissertation proposal – end of July 2010
*Complete first quarter of dissertation July 2011
*Second quarter of dissertation July 2012
*Third quarter of dissertation July 2013
*Finish draft dissertation July 2014
*Revise, defend dissertation July 2015
On September 1, I will have attained all these goals except for one: I have only presented one paper at a national academic conference. (But I’m gunning for two papers in November of 2015, so hopefully that one will be knocked out as well!) Things didn’t go exactly as I’d planned: I had to write a master’s thesis as well as a dissertation, and the dissertation ended up taking only 18 months. On this side of the process, I can’t imagine dragging it out over five years as I had tentatively scheduled here–I would have lost momentum and never finished. As rewarding as it was, I thank God that it is behind me!
The whole reason behind this list was to make me employable as a Bible professor. I am now an assistant professor, preparing to do the best job in the world: teaching the Bible. I am most blessed among men (and women)!