My family will remain in Salt Lake and I'll stay on staff at Risen Life Church; however, I will need to make three trips for seminars to California (San Fransico during the first 2 years, and likely Los Angels after that).
Interestingly, after I completed a Masters of Divinity at Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary, Lisa was ready for me to be done with my studies. She was right; we needed a break. However, after some time had passed, we started to think about additional study. I had attended a PhD preview visit to Golden Gate and took Lisa with me. We enjoyed the campus and I loved what they had to offer but that program just didn't seem like the best fit at the time.
A year later I attended Mission Week at Golden Gate and took a Risen Life Church team with me. While introducing a friend to Dr. Iorg, the conversation shifted to me. God seemed to be opening a door. With an hour I was speaking with Dr. Wilson and others. As the week progressed it seemed God might be placing a path before me. After more time, lots of prayer, reflection, discussion with my wife and others, and a counting of the cost I decided that I would simply apply and see what might happen. Then I got accepted.
I have a large student loan so my wife and I agreed that I would not engage in any further studies if it would require increasing this loan or distracting from paying it off. The total amount needed for the Doctorate or Ministry program is $9,300, plus books and travel costs. This will be broke up into six installments and I'm now praying for funds. I'm applying for scholarships and grants and will most likely ask for books for my birthday and Christmas. God has brought Lisa and I this far in the process and we're hopeful. (If you're the praying type, please consider adding this to your prayer request. If you're really wealthy and just itching to help a guy in ministry out, please keep me and church planting in Utah in mind!)