Bible college and seminary students face innumerable challenges from emotional, spiritual and financial pressure to often relational issues as a result of going to school. All of these are challenges that I know well. I was a Bible college and seminary student for five years after attending several community colleges and one technical college. I understand well the challenges and blessings that come from being a student. I’ve been there done that and got that badge! A new book, Blessed Are the Balanced: A Seminarian’s Guide to Following Jesus in the Academy by Paul E. Pettit and R. Todd Mangum, has come out that aims to help seminary students face the challenges of undergraduate and graduate studies with an approach that will help them grow in the grace of God as they pursue rigorous scholarship.
The book has seven chapters. In chapter two the author aims to help the reader understand the basis for education through the lens of the Great Commandment. Many seminary students in my experience go into seminary with the wrong ideas about what seminary is all about and come out often time’s with far more education than their spiritual life can muster. To be fair this happens even to the best intentioned seminary student. Bible college and seminary is a time to drink from the firehose. My encouragement to you is to enjoy this time. Feast on all that you’ll learn during this time. It goes by so fast. In chapter three the author looks at the goal of learning to love God and live for Him, which is to become like Jesus. Chapter four helps the reader discipline heart and head to the task of rigorous academic studies. Chapter five talks about how to fight against apathy and guard your quiet time in the Word of God. Chapter six looks at the importance of humbling serving the Lord in the context of the local church. The book concludes with a look at the important role family and friends play in the life of seminary students.
Seminary students need good books that will challenge them to not only know the right information but to know and make known and live by what they are being taught. This is what Blessed Are the Balanced does so well. This book will help you as a Bible college or seminary student to love the Lord with all of your heart, mind and strength by the grace of God. I encourage Bible college and seminary students to pick up this book. I encourage Pastors to get this in the hand of their Bible college and seminary students. This book will help Bible college and seminary students to understand the importance of time well spent in seminary that will prepare them for a lifetime of service to the Church in whatever capacity the Lord allows. I highly recommend this book and pray the Lord will use it powerfullt to humble, mold and shape a generation of seminary students for His glory.
I received this book for free from Kregel Academic for this review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”