If anyone had asked me three years ago if I was going to start a degree course AGAIN! I would have said ‘no chance’. I’m not an academic type person, I like reading but Theology can be hard going at times.
Today I attended my graduation ceremony from Durham University at Durham Cathedral, after spending the last two years in full time study this has been one of the main parts of my training for ministry. I was exceedingly pleased when I first started the course to be told it’s not the end of the world if you don’t come away from your training with a qualification. This eased my mind as many many years ago I was told in primary school that I was dyslexic, at that time there wasn’t the support there is today. I went to a special school for a year and then put back into main stream education and left to fend for myself.
As I had successfully candidated for ministry training I mentioned that it was thought that I was dyslexic. The Methodist Church made sure I was tested and put in place all the help available to me for the training I was about to start.
I had great help from friends on the course, in particular Chris who helped to keep me sane…
I never really thought I would ever really pass the degree course. I had started courses in Theology and Ministry twice before once at Cliff College and then at York St John both times I ended up chickening out before starting the final year. I had convinced my self there was no way I would have any chance of passing because of my dyslexia, so took the easy option.
So this time when I was put straight in at level two I decided that I would just do my best, if I didn’t pass the degree then it wasn’t going to be the end of the world. So I did what I could and apparently even with my dyslexia and help and advice from my partner who spent many an evening reading through my essays, to tutors and the staff at the University’s disability service it turns out I was capable of passing!
Hard work, determination, doing the best I could and being sure that this was the place God had called me to to follow his call into full time ministry. I firmly believe God gives us the abilities that we need, whether we think we have them or not. If you are dyslexic or have something that you use as a barrier to do what God is calling you to do, there is no way God will let you, it is far easier and less hard work if you go with the flow because he equips his people to do exactly what he has planned for them… Whether you like it or not!