While down in North Carolina, I was able to go through my old baby book. And inside of it, I found the statement of faith I had to write for my 8th grade confirmation. While most of it is silly, it is still funny to see how some of the same ideas have grown with me over time.*
For me the most amazing thing about coming to Princeton has been the articulation of spiritual growth. When deciding between Princeton and Gordon Conwell, I went to visit G-C. During a weekend seminar, some weird guy piped up from the back asking, “Will Gordon Conwell help challenge and redirect my faith, or will it simply build upon what I already believe.” In unision all of the students agreed that Gordon Conwell would not challenge you, but rather regurgitate what you already believe (my paraphrase).
Concerned with that answer, and other things, I decided to come to Princeton (as did that weird guy). I figured Princeton would deconstruct my faith and then rebuild it–but by mostly using new tools and supplies–so that it would be something completley new.
However, when I look at the transitions in my statement of faiths (the first is before seminary, the second in the middle (while the notes are what I am adding), I was impressed with the fact that my time at Princeton has helped me add words and information to a structure and a fundational belief I had prior to Princeton.
So as I begin preparing for my final assesment I found the trajectory from 8th grade to pre-seminary to my seminarian beliefs an interesting transition.
*for those wondering why an 8th grade statement of faith would be in a baby book…I am the youngest of three and my mother kinda of forgot to keep it up to date. So when I was about 13 she started to fill it out and make up stories, dates and lists of “firsts.”