Doing Life Together

Joleen and I met in 1992. We were both students at the Church of God Theological Seminary, following God and preparing for God’s call on our lives. We began dating at the end of 1992 and were married in January 1994. Before we committed to marriage, though, we talked about what it would look like … Read more

Pair o’ Docs

It may be a corny play on words, but it’s one we’ve heard a couple times already — by one of the members of my dissertation committee and also a fellow student at the doctor of ministry dinner last night — both saying that we’d be a “pair o’ docs.” The weekend began with a … Read more


Wow. It’s been a long journey, but we’re finally reaching the finish line! The home stretch of the dissertation-writing process involved preparing the final draft of our dissertations after we received the last edit from the editor at Asbury (see The Rest of the (Dissertation) Story and One Step Closer to see recent lists of … Read more

Successful Defenses

Good news: we both successfully defended our dissertations! Over the course of 84 hours, we drove to and from Asbury Theological Seminary in Wilmore, KY (nearly 20 hours roundtrip), and met with our dissertation committees: Randy met with Russell West (mentor), Chris Kiesling (second reader), and Milton Lowe (D.Min. team representative). Joleen met Russell West … Read more


Ever since we brought Ethan home 9 weeks ago, we’ve wondered how this trip to Kentucky would go, mainly because Ethan doesn’t always handle the car seat very well. But Ethan traveled surprisingly well. He got a little tired and fussy toward the end, but that was understandable — it was a long trip, and … Read more

Road Trip!

During our first two months with Ethan, we’ve experienced a number of firsts. This week, we will experience another first — a road trip. Tomorrow morning after breakfast, we will drive to Asbury in Wilmore, KY where we are scheduled to defend our dissertations Thursday afternoon (Randy) and Friday morning (Joleen) before driving back Friday … Read more

How Was the Trip?

Whenever we return from traveling (or at the end of some important experience), we’ll commonly ask each other: How was the trip? It gives us an opportunity to reflect on things we enjoyed, things we didn’t enjoy, things we learned, and things we’ll carry with us forever. Here at the end of our 10-week journey … Read more

One Step Closer

Just before the local post office closed this afternoon, we mailed our defense drafts — 3 copies from each of us — to the doctor of ministry office for the members of our dissertation committees. Every step is one step closer to the finish line. Throughout this program, which we began more than 4 years … Read more

Balancing Dissertations and Peekaboo

After lunch today, we needed to split shifts between dissertation work and hanging out with Ethan so that we can mail them tomorrow afternoon. At the time I went to my computer to get started on my work, Ethan thought it was a good time to play peekaboo. So we did. Life can be a … Read more

Seeing Red 2.0

On Friday, we received our second round of edits from the editor at Asbury. And just like the last time (Seeing Red), there’s a lot of red marks on the pages of our drafts! The edited drafts came about a week late, leaving us only a week to return three cleaned up copies to the … Read more