My Very Bad Awful EnglishPosted: May 17, 2010
I remember when I first had to start writing on a regular basis, it was my 3rd grade year with Mrs. Burns that made her class journal once a week. It was here that I found out that I was awful at writing. But yet at the same time I was somewhat fast if I read to myself, and I could remember anything that I read into my mind from a book, the newspapers, the back of sports cards, to magazine’s, etc. Whatever I read with my eyes, stayed in my mind.
What bothered me more than anything as a 8-year old boy was that my english was awful, I could not understand grammar at all, and worse off I simply did not understand how to journal my thoughts in an english sentence let alone write about what I had remembered from my readings. It was bad, so bad that by the 5th grade I needed and english tutor and by 7th grade I was basically thrown into english classes that were two and three years behind the actual grade I was in. This did not help my future. My 9th grade english class I don’t really know how I passed, and by the time 10th grade came luckily english and grammar class had changed to literature class which I loved and hated. I loved reading it, I hated having to write about it. By my junior year in high-school I was sleeping so much in literature class that the teacher made a deal with me. One, I had to stay awake 2 out of the 5 days a week, and Two, I had to teach once a week his class on literature. It was then where I enjoyed relaying the information I had studied during the week by myself to my peers. I at the time never wanted to teach in the future is because that only meant I needed more schooling after high-school, and that was not in my plans. Thankfully my senior literature class was cake and I was able to graduate high-school, barley though with a 1.3 GPA.
Fall of 2002 I started college at a small Bible school in upstate New York called Word of Life. Since then I have been writing constantly for class after class almost on a weekly basis for the past 8 years, even summers! However it was finally when I was out of my home town and in an accredited institution that it came to hit me that my grammar, vocabulary, spelling, and writing was a train wreck. The only reason I was able to graduate from Word of Life after one year was because of testing. I remembered everything I had ever read or been told in class, and when the test came I had no reason to study because I just threw up back on the page what I had been reading for classes or had heard from the professor. It was the essay and writing of small papers that murdered my grades. Murdered them so that I passed my freshman year with only a 1.8 GPA.
Fall of 2003, I from some reason (which I had thought at the time I knew, but God only knows now) went further in college, transferring to Baptist Bible College in Clarks Summit, PA to work on a bachelor degree. There I meet Dr. Long – almost the death of my college career. By midway of my first semester in college there Dr. Long pulled me aside letting me know that it was impossible for me to pass his class with below a 20%, and I might as well stop coming to it. He was right, for the next year I failed both English 101 and English 102 amazingly, so amazingly that Dr. Long proceeded by telling me that in his 39-years of teaching at the college level that I was by far the worst student that he had ever encountered with the english language that actually came from an english speaking country. Dr. Long was not going to stop me, for I enrolled back in his class the following year both in english 101 and 102 and this time failed with a 60% in both classes! I remember his words on the last day of his 40-year career as he failed me yet for the 4th time in a-row within 2-years, “I’ve never seen a student so bad at grammar in my life, good-luck.” The next year Dr. Long had long and retired and I had hired a tutor, and meet with my new professor at least once a week and actually passed with C’s. Finally I thought english was done in my life and I would no longer have to worry about it in my future. My last semester at BBC I did not exactly know where I was headed, but the longer I was in Bible College, the more I enjoyed studying theology, church history, and the Bible. So I applied to seminaries around America and decided to look at M.A., M.A.R. and M.T.S. programs.
It was during this time in my last semester at BBC of 2006 before graduation that a my good friend Dan Cruver told me to start blogging. At first I wanted nothing to do with it, and thought it was only going to be humiliation. But he challenged me to start one and maybe, just maybe my english, writing skills, and grammar may happen to get better. So I started a blog, I still remember my 1st few post, some book reviews, some speeches I had given, and some Bible lessons I had taught at summer camps. No one read them, and I was quite happy that no one did. I graduated BBC and moved back to the great midwest to attain seminary and pursuing my M.A.R degree.
I decided to attend Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary in Grand Rapids, where they felt obliged to place me on academic probation because of my transcripts of failing english not once, not twice, but four times. Although english class did not and does not exists in seminary, little did I know what I was in store for. English was to have been mastered, and spending the last 8-years finally getting MLA down, I then had to learn the turabian style. I felt like I was doomed for sure, but reading the turabian handbook more than my Bible my 1st semester I came along alright. The blog though came along quite well too, matter of fact, I started enjoying blogging so much I didn’t care if I had one reader, 10 or 100, I just wanted to blog because it helped me progress in my writing skills, or the lack there of.
I still know that I am not that great at writing, although because of blogging I have learn to love it more than I did in my younger days. With the number of papers and writing two thesis in the 3 1/2 years of seminary, I have learn that writing for me takes time, patience, and a work ethic. I continue to blog until I find something better that helps my english skills and hope that you can either enjoy it or at least get a kick-out-of my writing.