On April 24th, I finished my last major class. As I hit submit on that test, I stopped. It hit me that my time at The Master’s University has come to a close faster than I thought possible that day when I was greeted by cheers and smiling faces and signs that said, “Welcome to TMU!” I became a Mustang that day, and I had no idea then how much the Lord would gently and graciously change my life in four years of TMU joy.
Why did I grow? How did I grow? Why did I just say that TMU was a joy? I wish those answers came in nice, neat little packages of well-ordered thoughts. The truth is that TMU shaped me little by little, in a blended mixture, with each experience running into the next. It was a constant back-and-forth between beholding Christ and beholding Scripture.
I grew in moments like learning biblical hospitality when welcoming visitors while interning for our Conference Services department. I grew while sprawling in our hallway at midnight, enforcing quiet hours and discussing the value of the church. I know that sitting in classes like Old Testament Survey or the book study of Isaiah transformed my entire frame of thinking as I saw God’s glorious plan of salvation for Israel and the world. I’ll never forget my amazement that even professors teaching the general education courses tied everything back to Scripture. They showed that history is God’s story, that the basis of biology comes from the life-giver Himself, and that even the way I craft an argument for an essay points to the perfect Word.
That still does not sum up my growth. I must add in studying abroad, with two trips that made me realize that every bit of theology is real; it is quite grounded in history and geography. I realized that fully one night as I rowed a boat out on the Sea of Galilee with a friend and remembered the Creator of it who also walked on it. Those trips (quite unique to TMU) burned Scripture into my brain, and this was only reinforced as I learned to interpret it in classes like Hermeneutics or Messianic Theology.
I would be tempted to say that everything I learned from Master’s came from the classroom, but I would be amiss if I did not realize that the Lord shaped my life at 21726 Placerita Canyon Road because of one thing. That was the people.
TMU gives more than a major. It equips and sharpens, forms convictions and shapes hope, confronts and encourages, all the while giving joy. When I think back each of those played out in four years, my reaction is joy.
I visited my professors in their offices and joined them for lunch, and I saw their humility, honesty, faithfulness, and wisdom. They displayed their love for the Lord to me every single time I saw them.
I planned dorm events, styled hair for Theatre Arts, sang in choir, and joined clubs. The men and women leading these programs modeled deep love for people, care for God’s glory, and excellence as their motive.
I made Target runs, walked to the gate, and ate many meals in the caf., and the students I did it with showed persistent adoration of Christ, constant encouragement, and movement towards maturity.
As I look back, it sounds like I am the one responsible for my own growth. But that just isn’t true. God has entirely done the work though His faithful servants.
The Master’s University has always been about Christ and Scripture, and this is what I walk away with after four years. God has been on display, His Son upheld at every turn; His Scripture has shone forth beautifully. My time at TMU drives me to live and die for those convictions, to press on to know the Lord, and to long eagerly for the time when He will receive all honor from all men.
John tells us in his first epistle that when we have fellowship with God and with God’s people, our joy will be made complete. When I remember all that the Lord has done, I must respond with praise, thankfulness, and… joy!
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