Theologian in training, Michele, had some great words of wisdom regarding the importance of life experience to honing our education. Here are a few words from her ongoing Theologian in Training Manifesto:
Yesterday we studied applications in my hermeneutics class. When you study the word you have to experience it in life to grow enough to handle what you have learned. Seminary students learn so much in such a short period of time that there’s no way we can experience enough to handle that much knowledge. Professor Poythress said that it would take about twenty years to do so. He said that we were these big, misshapened-head creatures, that we were monsters and we should remember that and not allow our knowledge to puff us up (1 Corinthians 8:1).
I thought about it later that day and decided that it would make a great starting point to my Theologian in Training Manifesto: We know that knowledge should not puff up but lead to the love of God and to the love of our neighbor as ourselves. We should never attempt to win an argument at the expense of our fellow Christian or cause them to stumble on account of us but we are to hold firm to the truth and share it in love and concern for the unity of the body, all the while remembering that “all people” will know that we are Christ’s disciples by our love (John 13:35).
(Michele, by the way, is a seminary student at Westminster East.)