Can the Degree Help me Grow in my Faith?

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If you have stumbled onto this article or onto this blog, it probably means you are considering pursuing a degree in Theology.  But maybe this initial curiosity is also being met with misgivings such as, 

“I wasn’t really that interested in RE lessons in secondary school, so why should I think studying a Bachelors in theology will be much different?”  

Or “I’m quite new to faith, so I’m not sure I fit the profile of a Theology student.”  

Or maybe, “I don’t feel like I’m at a very strong place in my faith at the moment and I’ve even been experiencing some doubts about God.  This degree isn’t for Christians like me.”  

These are legitimate questions and you are not the first person to feel this way.  If I could sit with you and have a face-to-face conversation, I would want to communicate to you that pursuing this degree could actually be the most helpful thing for your Christian faith!  

I would also want to introduce you to Brad.  Brad was a student on the degree a few years ago.  When he first joined, he had only been a Christian for about three years.  It would be fair to say that Brad wasn’t sure he really wanted to pursue the degree, but a couple influential leaders in his life encouraged him that it would be a good thing.  It took a while, but as Brad spent more time with us, he discovered that his degree experience was giving him much more than information and university credit.  It was transforming his faith.  

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So Brad, how did studying on the degree help your relationship with God?  

“Studying on the degree helped me grow in my faith hugely over my two years. It developed my knowledge of the Bible, but more importantly it helped me process who God wanted me to be, and what God wanted me to do.”

How did the residential conferences play a part in this? 

“The residential part was my favourite aspect of the degree. We travelled as a group from Scotland, which allowed us to bond more, talk on a deeper level and process what was going on in our lives. Staying at the conference centre with the community was huge for me too, as I felt it allowed us to connect with other students more than if we were attending classes once or twice a week.  This structure gave time for us to grow as a community and form relationships that were more than just classmates. I felt like this played a massive part in my personal growth, having that time with people in a similar life stage and with a similar heart to myself to hang out with, as well as process life and ministry. At first I laughed it off as Reign trying too hard, but it really did become like a family to me – with actual brothers and sisters to do life with. 

Was there anything about your weekly Cluster group that encouraged your faith?  

“My cluster followed on from the community built while on our residential weeks, with my cluster leader, Alex, acting as a mentor to us. I felt like the guys I had were like brothers to me, and Alex was our leader and example in how to live a life worth following. Having those weekly calls helped me be accountable to that life that I was trying to live, as well as supporting each other through the trials of everyday youth ministry, and everything else that went on in that time of our lives.”


dstevens

Darin is a coach at heart. He loves to develop young leaders to become effective in their local ministries. Darin also serves as Head of Training as he oversees Reign Ministries' training programmes and resources. Darin has been discipling young people for 25 years and brings his love for young people into every part of our organisation.
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Categories: Articles, Testimony, Youth Ministry Degree Course

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