EDUCATIONMATS, expects to graduate in 2011
CURRENT ENDEAVORSSherrene recently spent a summer working with Mission to the World in South Asia.
Sherrene (David) DeLong
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How did your decision to attend WSC come about?
Initially, I was interested in women’s ministry, counseling, and encouraging women to love Scripture. My pastor encouraged me to specifically pursue theological study, reasoning that solid theology and a robust understanding of God’s Word should be primary in encouraging women towards godliness. Also, his wife is an alumna of WSC, and she spoke highly of the scholarly education available here. The location of WSC is right in between my church family and my physical family as well. From the recommendations of those whom I look up to, the location, the scholarship program for women, and the dedication to Reformed scholarship, WSC ended up being the perfect choice.
I know many people say that Seminary for a Day was the factor that helped them decide on attending WSC. Admittedly, when I attended Seminary for a Day, I was a bit intimidated by the emphasis on the rigorous learning process, intense language study, and the overall high level of academic scholarship. Yet as I thought about it more, I realized that if I have the privilege of studying the Word of God formally for three years of my life, why should my standards be lowered? Let me wrestle through the intricacies of Scripture that I may love it all the more. Attending WSC has helped me do that already.
What have you enjoyed about your WSC education thus far? How have you benefited from it?
The greatest benefit of my education is being pointed to Christ every single day. Not one class goes by where our broad understanding of church history, heavy doctrinal debates, or even Greek grammar is not somehow narrowed and focused upon the gospel. While studying at WSC is indeed rigorous, it is most definitely worth it simply for this reason.
I am also enjoying seeing the unity of Scripture like never before. I read the entire Bible in thirteen weeks for English Bible Survey, and at the same time I spent days working through a single short passage in Greek for an exegetical paper. The perspicuity and unity of Scripture have really been highlighted for me here.
The professors at WSC also make my education enjoyable. Each faculty member presents a scholar's perspective with a pastor's heart. They engage our minds and care about our souls, and are serious about training us to truly know God's Word, understand our historic faith, and serve the church accordingly.
What would you say has been one your favorite WSC experiences thus far?
Although the academic realm of WSC is fantastic, the community is equally enjoyable. I especially love interacting with the women on campus. These ladies are very much an answer to years of prayers for godly female friends. Right now, there are five of us living in a house together. I like to call it “The Convent” because we’re a bunch of unmarried seminary women who formally study the Bible and talk about theology and all its intricacies. As we study together we grow together in our pursuit of biblical womanhood and godly femininity. They are a constant reminder that the study of theology is not a masculine activity, but a Christian one.
Oddly, another favorite experience of mine has been sitting in on preaching classes. I’ve developed a new respect for pastors as I hear my brothers preach and critiqued. The time and effort they take in preparing sermons and carefully expositing the Word of God is admirable. It’s also fun to joke with them outside of class, usually noting some funny incident will most likely be used as a sermon illustration someday.
You are currently beginning a missions internship role at the Presbyterian Church of America where you’re a member. Can you tell us a bit about what your internship will entail?
It truly is a privilege to be able to serve my church as an intern. I will attend missions committee meetings, help with the planning of the missions conference at our church, and work on various projects for the missions committee to promote missions in our congregation. I am especially looking forward to corresponding with and praying for our supported missionaries, as well as generally learning the ins and outs of how our church functions with regards to missions. I also have a hefty reading list of missional books and biographies, and I hope to do some outreach projects as well. On a different level, I will also be interacting with MTW (Mission to the World) regarding church planting in South Asia. Yet another part of the internship includes a directed study at WSC over the summer with Dr. Johnson on women in missions. My time as an intern will be helpful in preparing for my own future, but I also hope to encourage our church family by promoting the worship of God and the care of His bride as the method and means of world missions. This internship is a new position at the church, and I look forward to developing it with the missions committee and elders.
What do you hope to do after you graduate from WSC?
Although my initial intention in attending WSC was to explore counseling and women’s ministry, this goal has expanded to women abroad. It is now my dream to serve the church in South Asia. After visiting South Asia last year, I was exposed to the needs of the church there, as well as how tremendously blessed we are here in the US. I contacted MTW (Mission to the World) to explore possibilities, and at this point, God-willing, it sounds like I will go to South Asia under their auspices. As Reformed congregations grow in South Asia, men are being trained to be leaders, and rightly so. Yet the women are often left struggling to understand their husbands’ ministries. I would like to encourage them to know, understand, and cherish the gospel for themselves as they encourage their husbands in ministry and serve their brothers and sisters. I look forward to however God would have me serve and seeing how my theological training at WSC will be put to use.