When I transferred to Nebraska Wesleyan, I was undecided on a major—and on life. My advisor (Professor Emeritus of French Tony Epp) suggested that I just go “look around” a bit, take some general requirements and see what interested me. One class changed my life; it was “Introduction to the New Testament” with Professor of Religion David Peabody.
|I immediately recognized that the academic study of religion is not Sunday school.|
Being the son of a United Methodist minister and having grown up in the church, I assumed that a religion class would be a piece of cake. However, I immediately recognized that the academic study of religion is not Sunday school. About two weeks into class, I made an appointment with Dr. Peabody. My opening statement was, “My dad’s a minister. And I’ve never heard any of this stuff you’re talking about. Where are you getting it from?”
His response was, “Is your God big enough?”
Well, God was (and is) big enough. Given the fact that I later attended seminary, was ordained a UM pastor, completed my Doctor of Ministry degree and have served in a variety of ministry settings, I guess you could say that this one class—and the wise, challenging words of a professor—literally changed my life.