Tuesday, February 5, 2008

A Surprise Frustration from an Easy Class

Today is the second day of the new semester, and I can already feel the pressures of too many things I've go going on piling up. But no worries- most of these things are good, exciting things, and I have taken them on willingly. The stress I expect to endure over the next couple of weeks in order for all said things to happen, will be worth it.

After a fantastic first class last night, my morning started today quite routinely, meeting my friend Beth as the sun rose to head to the gym, after which I headed straight to my second class: Pneumatology, Ecclessiology, and Eschatology. Yep. All 3 in one. Good times...

My problem is this: I have loved my time at Garrett, and value the classes and experiences I've had. However, in light of some of the changes that are occurring with administration and faculty, things are a bit sticky. They're getting better, and things are really looking up- enough that I would definitely encourage anyone applying to look into Garrett. However, that doesn't take from the fact that I feel like my class kind of got "gypped." This is my third theology class I've taken at Garrett, and while none of them have been terrible, I don't feel like any of them have really pushed me, either. After only one day of class, I am absolutely sure this class will be the same.

There are many reasons for thinking this, the most obvious one is something I did not run into in the other 2 courses I took (which I loved! but could have been pushed more). We have 3 major texts we'll be focusing on- one for each topic. All 3 of them are Moltmann's texts. NO diversity in texts there... I feel like- and the lecture today solidified it- I'm studying what Moltmann thinks more than I'm focusing on how we as theologians can/should form our own theologies around these three very important pieces of theology... Not to mention that our only "research" (he REALLY emphasized how important it is to do good research!) paper of the semester has limitations like not using more than 5 resources. 5!?! I think the last time I used so few was in high school! Ok, maybe freshman year of college... but still! I guess quality over quantity? But I like being able to have more diversity of resources than that...

Maybe it will be fine. I've thought a lot about dropping the class with hopes that I can take one of the other 2 faculty next year... but I have to take 2 theology electives left to take, and I don't want to have to double-up and take 2 together next year (as that would leave 3 theology classes in 2 semesters)- if I did that, i know they wouldn't get what they deserve anyway. The only other theology classes this semester don't work with my schedule.

I've looked at the syllabus and evaluated the work load, and while I initially thought about dropping one class just because I'll be so busy at church, etc this semester, this one wouldn't make sense, as it doesn't seem like its going to be that hard. So I guess my question is- do I "suck it up" and take it now, even if it means I'm getting gypped on what my education could/should/would be if I waited? I could always read more later, or even sit in on classes next year (though I know better than to think I will have time to actually do that). Hmm. I guess I've already decided, and I'll stick with the class. It might pleasantly surprise me. But I'm also a bit sad about it, knowing that I'm not getting what I should out of it. Fearing that my theology is going to suffer more long-term as a result of it.

Or maybe it will be fine... and I'm concerned over this needlessly...

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