Entering Seminary the Right Way!

Have you gone to seminary?  Would you like to?

I read this post today from Ben Reed (not YouthMin’s Ben Read) called, 10 things I wish I’d be told in seminary, and it instantly brought me back to my seminary days.   If you ever have a chance to go to seminary, do it!  Just make sure you are set up to succeed.   Ben Reed gives a list of 10 things he wished he was told in seminary, and I am going to layout how to enter seminary the best way possible!

1.  Work in a church.  I honestly can’t believe pastors will spend years away from what they love and are called to do.  You can become quickly out of touch with culture if you spend too much time inside the walls of seminary.  I was fortunate enough to be in full time studies and part time work at the church.  I think this is the best of both worlds.  I was interning under one of the best youth pastors I personally know.  I can’t imagine learning each day apart from the church body.  Each day when I was reading a book, or listening to a lecture I was always thinking how does this apply to my church, or my youth ministry.  It could become easy to detach, and distance your learning from church.

2.  Learn how you lead!  Don’t try to clone someone else.  You will never be like Mark Driscoll, or Matt Chandler.  The greatest news is that God made you the way you are!  Lead as God has called you to be.  This took a lot of years to learn, and I am still working this out.  My mentor always allowed me to be me.  He was never pushing me to be someone else.  I feel like seminary is a cloning ground for people who want to be someone else.  Don’t fall into that trap!  Be yourself even in seminary!

3. Be Humble.  Just because you are now working on your MDiv, or DMin don’t be a tool.  You have people in your church who are amazing and are full of wisdom.  I don’t know how many guys I met entering seminary who were full of it!  It’s not just entering seminary humble, but it’s saying that way.

If you have the chance to enter seminary do it!  You need to become a life long learner.  Make sure that you have people around that will support and encourage you through it.

Have you been to seminary? Are you planning on going? 

21 Comments

  1. Been & loved it! I will say looking back that seminary laid important theological and self-discovery groundwork, but it was my supervised field education that REALLY got me ready for what I do now at a practical level. Don't study in a vacuum!
  2. Been & loved it! I will say looking back that seminary laid important theological and self-discovery groundwork, but it was my supervised field education that REALLY got me ready for what I do now at a practical level. Don't study in a vacuum!
  3. I don't know about #1. I agree that you should be involved at a local church, but I don't know about working there. I think getting a regular job in the community will help you stay more in touch with the culture, plus it gets you outside the seminarychurch bubble. Hopefully you'll have the rest of your life to work in the church, seminary can be an opportunity to broaden your experience in a way you won't be able to later.
    • Matt, Thanks for the push back. Love it. I would hope that you would serve in a church that isn't in the bubble, and ls living missionally in the community. I used to think that working in starbucks or somewhere else would help me understand unchurched people better. Looking back, I was wrong on that.
  4. I don't know about #1. I agree that you should be involved at a local church, but I don't know about working there. I think getting a regular job in the community will help you stay more in touch with the culture, plus it gets you outside the seminarychurch bubble. Hopefully you'll have the rest of your life to work in the church, seminary can be an opportunity to broaden your experience in a way you won't be able to later.
    • Matt, Thanks for the push back. Love it. I would hope that you would serve in a church that isn't in the bubble, and ls living missionally in the community. I used to think that working in starbucks or somewhere else would help me understand unchurched people better. Looking back, I was wrong on that.
  5. Going to go, eventually. Actually the church I'm at right now is wanting to help me further my education, and is really committed to doing so, it's awesome to feel that much love from the community I've been a part of for only 7 months.
  6. Going to go, eventually. Actually the church I'm at right now is wanting to help me further my education, and is really committed to doing so, it's awesome to feel that much love from the community I've been a part of for only 7 months.
  7. Don't be a tool. For sure. I am starting my seminary stuff monday, but have a pretty reliable biblical studies foundation, and one thing I learned was to be careful how much of your classroom work ends up just being regurgitated from the pulpit. Not that it should never make it there, but just recognize that the fact that you're having some ah-ha moment about some deep theology doesn't mean that's where your students need to be led through at that point. i'd agree with matt on the not sure about #1. That's definitely how I'm doing it, but it also means that, schedule wise and financially, it may be 2020 *literally* before I graduate. I envy those who are able to make it work by just going full time, on campus the whole time, working regular jobs to stay "grounded" and knock it out. just a thought. great post though.
  8. Don't be a tool. For sure. I am starting my seminary stuff monday, but have a pretty reliable biblical studies foundation, and one thing I learned was to be careful how much of your classroom work ends up just being regurgitated from the pulpit. Not that it should never make it there, but just recognize that the fact that you're having some ah-ha moment about some deep theology doesn't mean that's where your students need to be led through at that point. i'd agree with matt on the not sure about #1. That's definitely how I'm doing it, but it also means that, schedule wise and financially, it may be 2020 *literally* before I graduate. I envy those who are able to make it work by just going full time, on campus the whole time, working regular jobs to stay "grounded" and knock it out. just a thought. great post though.

Leave a Reply

Main Menu