The gasps. The surprised and tortured facial expressions. The desperate pleas for reconsideration.
You would have thought I’d just said I was going to attempt to slay a dragon single-handedly but no. I simply uttered the words “I’ve decided not to go to college right now”.
After the initial shock lessens when I’ve told of the “terrible atrocity”, that I’m not college bound, I’ve received many well meaning sentiments. The comments go something like this “you really need to just give it a try, you wont regret it” (assuming college could never be the wrong choice for a person) or “well, it’s always ok to take a year off” (trying to justify in their minds that I’m probably just taking a little break) and many other remarks encouraging me that I really should go.
To be fair I haven’t had this reaction for some time now. I mainly got these responses the year I graduated from high school and I guess by now they’ve all given up on me. I’m a hopeless case I suppose.
But I do still get a strange look from time to time. A great deal of people just can’t seem to understand why I wouldn’t choose to go to college and I suppose that’s understandable considering the culture we live in. For years it’s been pounded into our heads that college is the only way to “make something of yourself”, the only way to further your learning and if you don’t go to college you can’t truly be successful. I realize that most of the comments encouraging me to go to college are done out of genuine concern for my well being. These well meaning people want me to be successful in life and college is the only way they‘ve been told you can achieve that.
So why did I decide not to go to college? Am I against it? Was I unable to get accepted? Do I not have the money to go? Don’t I want to be successful?
In short, no. I’m not against college. I think it can be a very good choice for a lot of people but I don’t believe it’s a good choice for everyone. Nothing is a good choice if it is outside of God’s will for your life.
Am I unable to get accepted into a college or can I not afford it? Again, this is not the case. I firmly believe God will equip and provide for me to do anything in His will.
Don’t I want to live a successful life? Of course I do but what’s your definition of successful? Does successful mean getting a degree to put on my wall and making a lot of money? Or does successful mean living the life God has called me to live regardless of how much money I make or what type of occupation He gives me?
A truly successful life equals being completely submitted to His will, following the path He has for you, regardless of what the norm is and one day hearing God say “well done thou good and faithful servant”.
So then why am I not going to college? Because I don’t believe this is God’s will for my life, at least not right now. He has not given me a desire to pursue college at this time. To do anything, even “good” things, if they are outside of what God has called for us to do is extremely dangerous.
Ok, so ultimately being successful is to hear “well done” but what about right now? Don’t you want to plan ahead for the future? Wouldn’t God want you to keep on learning and growing? Absolutely! Planning for the future is very wise and you should never stop learning and growing however, contrary to popular belief college is not the only way (and not necessarily the best way) to do this.
I think hands on and one-on-one practical training are great options that are often overlooked. There are so many things you can learn by simply researching, seeking mentors and applying yourself. I have found this to be very true and by God’s grace I have excelled in becoming an entrepreneur in many different venues.
At this time I feel that God is calling me to pursue the skills I will need to become a good helpmeet to my future husband and a loving mother to my future children. Not going to college has given me more opportunity to hone my homemaking skills and learn practical occupations that I will be able to use later on in life when I have a family.
College is a great option for some people but I don’t think God calls everyone to go and I don’t believe that is an inferior calling if He does not lead a person to further their learning in this way.
Our God is a creative God who loves diversity and He has a unique plan for your life. Whatever His plan is for you, don’t be afraid to go against the grain even if the Lord is leading you to do something that is unpopular or different from the majority. Following His will for your life is the only way to gain true success and happiness.
I’ve told you why I’m not in college. Has the Lord ever lead you to go against the grain and do something unpopular? Please leave a comment and tell us all about it. We would love to hear how He helped/is helping you through it so we can be encouraged too!