First thing in the morning, I (Adam) will be hopping on the bus for the 20 minute ride to Case Western Reserve University. My first day of MBA orientation begins at 8 am.
This journey has been a long one for me, and the family as well. Anne and I started tossing around the idea of me pursuing an MBA back in 2004. At the time, I was Director of Operations for a CCC summer project in Lake Tahoe (the best job I've ever had, BTW). In the midst of doing the accounting, payroll, rules and regulations, and property management, much to my surprise I realized that I was good at those things, and they were fun!
It was a shock in many ways. I had never been involved in the business side of things before. But the next question quicklybecame, "How can I best steward these talents?" It became obvious that ministry is a generally poor environment for professional growth, and the opportunities within CCC to use my skills were pretty limited. So, Anne and I started thinking, "Why not learn from professionals?"
This led to a two-year waiting period where the idea was never far from the back of my mind. Then, in Decemeber 2006, I was in Washington DC for a CCC conference. While there, a friend of mine set us up with an after-hours tour of the Pentagon, through one of his former CCC students that had been working for the DoD. As we walked the halls of the Pentagon, and listened to the former student talk about her influence in high places of government, a familiar but friendly jealousy was aroused within me.
Over a late dinner, as our group talked after the tour, I was thinking that I would like to do something similar to what our tour guide was doing; that is, to be an insider in influential places, to have a voice with powerful people, and to be developed to the fullest capacity of my God-given abilities.
At once, very audibly in my head, I heard what I still think was the voice of God, say to me, "If you want that, then make it happen. You're a man, right? I've given you the skills, right? Stop talking and start doing!" The tone was by no means scolding; rather, it was the tone of release, a loving tone that said to me that I was free to choose between several good choices for the future of our family and to take an active role in playing out God's calling on my life.
Anne was immediately on board; she had been having similar stirrings. From there, it grew into choosing schools, locales, programs; mapping out timelines; scraping together money for study books and application fees and test fees; studying for entrance exams; writing essays; hectoring those filling out references; and a host of other challenges.
Tomorrow, it becomes reality.
There is much to tell from the journey. I am happy to answer specific questions, if anyone poses them in the comments. I will write more in the coming weeks to attempt to share some of those stories, for Anne and I have learned much through it all.