I just got a message from a guy who has graduated college and is considering a career in youth ministry. My advice to him was the same advice I received when I was considering the same thing. Experience trumps education. If you have to choose between getting a degree or getting experience, always choose experience. Even if it means you won’t graduate until you’re my age, married, and everyone thinks you’re the professor on the first day of class.
I asked my lead pastor nine years ago if I could be a part-time intern and go to school full time. He said I could do that, but he’d be offering me the same job in 4 years that I was being offered right then. I took the job, went to school part-part-time, and have never regretted it.
I think school is a huge waste of time for many people. Well, atleast seminary is. Barnes and Noble has the same books, at half the cost, and you don’t lose 4 years of life. I still may attend seminary, but only now as I’ve landed the job I’ve always wanted.
I meet a lot of guys who have seminary degrees who have no idea how to lead a ministry. I’m NOT saying that seminary is a bad thing, it’s just not the answer. If you’re in seminary, keep plugging away!
So go drop out, find a job as an intern, and don’t blame me if it doesn’t work out.
Blame Matt Chandler: he feels the same way (sort of).