Blogs - Summit Semester
November 07, 2008
Well, we only got three weeks left here at Summit Semester (you've probably heard that exact same line since the first blog...but a different number). It truly is hard to believe that we were all strangers to each other two months ago. We've all come to know each other so well.
Time does fly when you are having fun and a strict schedule. My alarm goes off at 7:58am every week day. My roommate and I fall out of bed and throw some water on our faces so we can see straight to crawl out for breakfast at 8:00 (we have that procedure down to a science by now). After breakfast we then have a morning prayer (usually as preparation for the mental whippings we so commonly receive in Bauman's classes), and then it's off to our three hours of classes on politics, theology, and English literature.
In politics, we've been discussing/debating the topic of public education. Whose job is it? Why isn't it working well? Is education even a right that the government should protect for all people? These are all questions that we've been trying to answer in and out of class. In theology this week, the topic of study has been the life and beliefs of theologians just prior to and during the early stages of the Renaissance, such as: John Wycliffe, John Huss, Francisco Petrarch, Sir Thomas More, and Erasmus. It's amazing to see just how grounded in their "radical" beliefs those church fathers were for the sake of "reforming" the Catholic faith of their time. And finally, in English Literature, we've been studying John Milton's "Paradise Lost" and multiple works of Thomas Gray. I had heard of "Paradise Lost" before, but I didn't give Milton nearly the respect he deserved for his work. Milton wrote his 11,000 line poem about the fall of Satan and man while being blind. Milton's skill of imagery makes you feel like you're falling through CHAOS with Satan all the way down to hell, or in heaven witnessing the Son volunteering to save humanity from its eventual fall. Thomas Gray, on the other hand, is not nearly as well known as Milton, but we've all quoted Gray at some point. "Where ignorance is bliss, 'tis folly to be wise."
But, as I'm sure you all know, it's not just work up here. The other weekend a group of six guys (including myself), hit up Durango for a day of amazing pizza, thrift book stores, and serious relaxation. But no matter where we go, we can't seem to get away from things we're learning either in class or in small groups. During our last small group meeting before that weekend, a testimony was given on the frailty of life. On our drive home from Durango we received a "crash course" in that concept. About 200 yards directly in front of our vehicle, we witnessed a garbage truck hit another car head on. The garbage truck flipped, but the driver was fine. The other car and driver were not in the same condition. The engine of the car was where the dashboard should have been, and the dashboard was pinning the driver against his seat and he couldn't move. There was not a lot we could do but call 911 and talk to the driver. That wreck all too well brought home the "frailty of life" concept. We don't know when our time is up in this world. We need to live every day with the intensity like it's our last, and make a difference in our own milieu ("word of the day"- compliments of Mandy).
It's Friday today finally, and the mood is "barely restrained excitement" right now at four in the afternoon (but that all changes after dinner). We are getting ready for a nice pizza dinner, prepared by our awesome cooks, and then its nonstop action and excitement till we pass out from exhaustion (parents, if you are wondering that's usually around 9 or 10 in the evening around here...honestly). Be praying that we have the stamina to stay focused on our classes these last few weeks.