Founder and Writer
College Means Blank Canvas
If you’re a college student or seminary student feeling a calling towards ministry, you need to be discipled, mentored, and equipped. You also need to learn more about the Bible, ministry, and mission. You need other to pour into you to help you grow in your walk with Christ and learn skills towards being a better missionary, pastor, etc. You need a great local church to provide those experiences for you. But, that’s not all you need.
The number of full-time vocational pastors is decreasing. The landscape of ministry is changing, and the way ministry is done in the future will also look different. There is a need for more bivocational missionaries and pastors. Your ministry may not include the ability to be full-time at your church or ministry location. A Bible degree is great for learning the Bible, but not so good at helping a bivocational pastor become a better plumber, electrician, or banker. As a college student, now is a great time to put in the effort to learn those skills and be more equipped to the future God may have for you. Here are some practical suggestions.
1. Learn or Develop Practical Skills That Translate to Business in the Future
Don’t throw out non-biblical majors and don’t consider it a waste of time to study things like business, language, or graphic design. In the global economy today, languages can offer you the leverage you need to compete in the job market and offer you skills that can be used to further the Gospel. Even if you’re unsure what your skills get you, general business degrees allow the practical skills to lead businesses and manage them.
2. Start a Low-Capital, Low-Risk Business
The best way to learn is to do. If you want to start sustainable business in the future, start one now. You don’t have to risk a ton of money and capital to start a business. There are numerous businesses you can start online or service based locally. If you fail, that’s ok. You haven’t spent too much money, so it’s a win-win. The lessons you learn from finding customers, organizing the business, and establishing operational systems are invaluable to future projects.
3. Find a Businessman to Be Your Mentor
When you feel called to ministry, a mentor is a great first step. Find pastoral mentors who can help you understand the role of pastor. Find missionary mentors who can demonstrate what a missionary does. But, also, find a businessman who can help you understand how business works. There’s a lot one can learn from those who are in the field. Entrepreneurs who have started successful businesses have a lot they can offer and their experience is invaluable.
4. Get a Job
Find a job somewhere. Even if it’s just working at a coffee shop or a landscaping business or a manufacturing plant. Even if you don’t need the money. While your working, ask yourself how this business becomes profitable. Watch your boss. Is he a good boss? Does he lead his employees well? Watch the owner. What is the owner concerned about? What is he not concerned about? Jobs teach us about business and the greater lessons we can carry into our own into the future.
You might also want to read these articles
It’s tempting to think that a business for mission model is something that was created in a church planter think tank, but the truth is business for mission has been around a lot longer than the last five years. The Bible is full of examples and anecdotes that give...
There are no shortage of ideas that can be used to create new businesses that allow pastors and missionaries the freedom they need to do what they love. Here is a non-exhaustive list to get the creative juices flowing. This is a quick overview of several types of...
I finally saw the movie 12 Strong, the movie about the twelve Green Berets that were dispatched right after the Al Queda attacks on the World Trade Centers and the Pentagon. It’s an incredible story of bravery and valor in battle. Al Queda felt it was the worst defeat...
Mission Drift Imagine that you were on an airplane to go visit family members in another state. While on the airplane, the pilot suddenly forgets where he is headed and goes somewhere else forcing you to deplane in this foreign place. I’m sure you’d be a little more...