Week Two Wrap-Up

Friday, September 9, 2016

Trying To Find My Pace

As I wrap-up another week, I find I'm settling in quite well.  I've managed to get slightly ahead which is both good and bad.  Good in the sense that it is always better to be ahead than behind.  Bad in the sense that I hit a little lull in the action by mid-week and I'll need to wait until next Wednesday for my next round of assignments.

Overall, it was another good week.  First assignments, first grades, and more getting to know my classmates.  My schedule seems to be working so far and I'm certain that by October, I'll find an even pace in my work.

The Week in Review

The major hurdle this week was to complete my first graded learning assignment.  I pretty much wrapped it over last weekend and then submitted it on Tuesday evening.  Overall, I was happy with what I submitted.  The GTA for my section is really on the ball and she actually posted my grade last night.  I'm happy to report I received a perfect score.  Yay me!  I'll enjoy the moment and then settle back down.  There is still a lot of difficult work ahead.

I had a nice evening Wednesday reviewing a chapel service.  The first week of the year on campus at DTS is Heritage Week.  The chapel services that week have featured former alumni and faculty.  I reviewed a service by Stanley Toussaint on Psalm 19 that was fantastic from August 30.  I almost felt like I was listening to my grandfather.  He was warm, funny, and engaging.  He broke the message down with a passionate wisdom delivered in a soft and clear manner.  I've since decided that I'll listen to all the Heritage Week sermons over the coming weeks as part of my chapel requirement.

I'm still dialoguing with my classmates on the week 1 assignment.  It's been really great to get to know them better.  I have no doubts that we're going to have a lot of fun as we help each other move forward in our respective programs.

Finally, With the extra time I gained, I took a personal day yesterday from school activities.  Instead, I worked on building a metal detector with an ATMega 328 that was just collecting dust.  I'm using a new Colpitts Oscillator design I found online and I'm surprised at how efficiently it works.  I need to do a better job tuning my search coil, but I thought this would be a fun activity with the kids over the weekend. I also took the time to finally watch Batman v Superman with my wife - I guess it was an OK movie.

What Did I Learn?

I learned a lot about English grammar this week.  It actually wasn't as scary as I thought it would be.  I'm still no expert by any stretch, but I feel much more comfortable analyzing writing from a technical point of view.  I'll continue that learning as I go, but I feel much better about things now.  No doubt this will help me not only as I continue the course, but most importantly in my own personal Bible study.

Finally, I learned that I can do this and that it's worth it.  It's early of course and I'm not going to get cocky.  But even after these couple short weeks, any fears that I've harbored about this program and my place in it have melted away.  I'm also very mindful that this isn't an academic pursuit.  It's a journey to discover God, know God, and seek His will.  By His grace, I am here and I give Him all the glory.  I hope and pray to be faithful in the application of the wisdom God is granting me through this program.

Lessons Learned and Best Practices

I don't have much more to offer in this space this week above what I've already written about in the post Time to Go Wayback.  The tools I've discovered have really helped me with my learning and I know that these will be valuable tools for the rest of my time at DTS and beyond.

One thing I am pondering is whether to begin studying a couple of the books we'll be working with in future assignments.  I know we'll be working with Nehemiah, Habakkuk, and Philemon.  I don't mean study per say, but to just get into the habit of reading these books.  The more familiar I become with these texts, the more prepared I'll be to handle those assignments, whatever they are.  I'll let you know.

BE101 Statistics

Based on the total number of grade points in the course, I can calculate my progress towards completion.  I am also tracking the amount of time that I am spending on the course which will help me budget my time moving forward and give you a rough estimate of the time required.  Do keep in mind though that this is the only class I am taking, so I am probably spending a little more time on this than I normally would if I was taking other classes.

BE101 Progress
Time Commitment (hrs)

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