Moving in at Southern Seminary

This is a post by Chuck Anderson, an incoming SBTS student from Florida. I’ve asked him to write for Said at Southern. Among other topics, he’ll be giving a first year student perspective to the blog. ~Tony K.

On August 7th, I moved to Louisville, Kentucky to begin studying at Southern Seminary, and it has been quite a week. A few days earlier, I had started the process of packing, which I didn’t completely finish until the morning of the 7th, when at about 5:00 AM, I woke up from my much-too-short sleep and loaded the car for a 14-hour trip from Lakeland, Florida to Louisville, Kentucky.

Today, I want to share a few of the details of this past week, and hopefully in coming weeks, I will write a little more about my decision to come to Southern, followed by some common experiences of a first-year seminary student. But first things first: this past week has been full and difficult and good.

My Parents

Before I go on, I have to mention that my parents have done so much to help this move to Louisville and to Southern be successful. They drove to Louisville with me and spent the better part of a week here in town. They wanted to make sure I had everything I needed to do well this semester. Certainly not the least of all, I enjoyed spending the time exploring my new city with them. I am certainly thankful to God for my parents.

A Full Week

At 7:30 AM, my car and my dad’s truck pulled out of the driveway in Lakeland, Florida. We tried to drive all the way, but just under an hour outside of Louisville, we hit a nasty traffic jam because of some road construction. Since both my dad and I were exhausted from driving all day, we stopped in Elizabethtown for the night. On Friday morning, we continued on our way to Louisville.

Manly 2212Friday, I checked in at the housing office in Fuller Hall. Then, my parents and I moved most of my belongings into my new dorm in Manly Hall. It’s a small room, but it’s a blessing. It has room for all of my stuff, but barely. As you can see, I still have a little cleaning to do.

Saturday through Tuesday are a bit of a blur. I just know that my parents and I made repeated visits to Walmart and a few other places for various necessities.

For church on Sunday, we visited the Fegenbush Campus of Highview Baptist Church. Dr. Moore preached on the Parable of the Sower. I was very impressed with Highview and the Fegenbush Campus, and I intend to visit again.

On Tuesday, August 12, my parents and I went to Starbucks for breakfast, then spent the day exploring the city. First, we took visited Churchill Downs and took a behind-the-scenes tour. What an interesting place and expensive place! If you want to see the race the cheap seats are expensive, and due to the location of the cheap seats you cant see very much of it. And the whole place is designed to direct you toward the wagering windows.

After Churchill Downs, we went downtown and ate lunch at J. Gumbo’s–amazing Jambalaya! Following lunch, we spent time driving around just to see the city. After one more quick trip to the store, I returned to my dorm and my parents returned to the Legacy Center for the night. At 5:30 Wednesday morning, My parents left Louisville and returned to Lakeland.

Wednesday was my designated day for Job-hunting. I attended a job fair at Cardinal Stadium, where I got information on a lot of job opportunities and left several resumes with potential employers. I trust in the Lord’s providence. On Wednesday evening and Thursday I have had several excellent occasions to meet other people at Southern, both from my building and elsewhere.

I began Friday with a short jog around campus at about 7:45 AM. The rest of Friday was dedicated to New Student Orientation.

A Difficult Week

The week was difficult, primarily for two reasons:

1. There were so many things that needed to be done. All of my belongings (from several different rooms back at home) had to be moved into my second-floor dorm room. My stuff then needed to be organized and arranged efficiently. I needed to shop for supplies. I needed to buy text books. I needed to get a Shield Card. In addition to all of this, I needed to spend some quality time with my parents before they returned to Lakeland. This week has been very busy.

2. I moved about 900 miles away from my hometown and my family. My family are very important to me–I love them dearly, and I miss them. I also love and miss so many of my friends from central Florida.

I have a feeling that in the future I may look back on this week as one of the least rigorous weeks of my seminary experience.

A Good Week

I live down the hall from another MDiv student named Brian. On a few different occasions, I’ve heard him answer the question, “how are you doing?” with “I’m living the dream.” That is a great way to describe how I feel about my move to Southern Seminary. Although the week was very busy and even though the week was difficult, this past week was also a very good and rewarding week.

  • I was able to spend time with my family
  • I’ve met a host of wonderful people here
  • I know this is where God wants me to be
  • Every time I walk out of the front door to Manly Hall and see Norton Hall across the lawn and the Boyce Library to the right and the Honeycutt Center to the left, I am reminded of what a privilege it is to study here
  • I am excited to learn from the world-class faculty here at Southern Seminary
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6 Responses to Moving in at Southern Seminary

  1. Terry Lange says:

    Even though I am not a student (yet) at SBTS… Welcome and enjoy yourself. You are in a place with rich history, world class faculty, staff and administration. Use the opportunity to make lifelong friendships and pray that God will use you like “iron that sharpeneth iron”

    I am hoping to be an SBTS student in a couple of years after I complete my MDiv work at another seminary up north. SBTS is a great place for theological education.

    Also, look up Terry Delaney and Hank Balch. These guys are great guys and the Lord is using them there at SBTS!

    Terry Langes last blog post..Salad Creations – Revisited

  2. Tony Kummer says:

    @Chuck: Thanks for sharing this part of your story. I know there are several hundred other students doing the same thing. I look forward to hearing how God will bless your time at Southern.

  3. Jose M. Rodriguez says:

    I was in your shoes exactly four years ago. I’m from Tampa and I too lived in Manly Hall for a time. It was a great place to make friends and lift each other up throughout that first semester (usually the toughest). I got over being overly homesick but I still miss the family and the beaches.

  4. Toney Sauls says:

    another florida boy here! i grew up in tampa, but lived in orlando before i moved up here. there are more and more floridians coming every year. i have petitioned to have the campus moved to florida, but i was laughed at!

    welcome to Southern! there is no finer theological institution in the world at present. i consider it an honor and privileged to be here and to sit under the learning of the esteemed and pastoral professors here. savor every semester -it will be over too soon.

    i attend highview east and like it very well. we found a great sunday school class and a great church family to fellowship with.

    here are some things you will definitely miss before too long:
    – publix (i crave the subs fortnightly! and no matter what anyone says, kroger is NOT like publix!)
    – the weather (autumn here is nice, but nothing beats knowing exactly what the weather will be like without having watching the weather!)
    – the ocean (i miss the smell of saltwater and sunscreen. sometimes i huff some sunscreen just to remember -not kidding!)
    – wearing flip flops every day
    – the way live oaks, palm trees, and pines look against the sky (i really miss the palm trees)
    – professional sports (college sports is a religion up here, get used to it)
    – being able to play golf year round or any sport for that matter
    – there are bunch of others, but i do not want to sound bitter (or is it too late?)

    glad you are here.

    – toney

  5. @ Everyone: Thank you for the encouraging comments! I do love it here, and I’m struck by what a privilege it is to study here, nearly every day.

    @Toney: I already miss Publix, although I’ve heard a rumor that they may be moving into Kentucky soon. Also, I’m looking forward to seeing all four seasons.

    @Jose and Toney: I’m glad to see that Florida is so well represented here. During New Student Orientation, I actually ran into a guy that I knew from Orlando, who I didn’t realize was coming here this semester.

  6. Pingback: Chronicles of a First Year Student: One Month at Southern Seminary | Said at Southern

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