College Kids Are Smarter Than Everyone Else in the World

College kids are smarter and more sophisticated than everyone else in the world, right?  Sadly, I thought they were, many years ago when I was a college student.  17 years later, after I graduated with my first higher education degree, I now know how foolish I was for thinking this way.

But truthfully, it seems I am not the only one that got caught up in this bubble of belief.  Many of my peers thought the same way.  It also appears that college students now, still operate with similar thoughts.  I'm not speaking for ALL college kids.  Everyone who has been to college, understands how diverse campuses can be, culturally and age demographically.  However, its a mindset that's easy to fall into.


When you are put into a land of higher education, its easy to assume that those outside that land are not being enlightened with the same knowledge you are.  You are around professors and scholars that have made full-time careers out of being a student.  Truthfully, we should never stop learning and always be willing to be a student of some sort.  However, not everyone is built or required to do this as a career.  Admittedly so, there are extremely smart individuals that are well-versed in their areas of expertise, teaching at our nation's universities.  I had the privilege of sitting under many great men and women while attending my undergrad program and while getting my Master's Degree.

With that said, its dangerous to assume that those on the "outside" are uneducated, uninformed, or somehow less sophisticated.  Its also downright ignorant being that many of those on the "outside" (our parents, grandparents, teachers, pastors, and professionals) have already attended college and received a degree.  They've been there, done that.  We can't discount or dismiss their knowledge.

This thinking is also dangerous because it becomes easy to become narrow-minded.  We often like to think of ourselves as being "enlightened" in college.  This definitely can happen!  However, don't automatically dismiss everything that you have learned in your past.  There is value in the things your parents and teachers taught you when you were younger.  Don't forget it.  Obviously, everyone should seek wisdom and truth, and understand what they believe and why they believe it.  In higher education, its easy to assume that you're being enlightened.  Many times though, you're trading one belief system for another because its more popular.

This is what causes friction sometimes in generations.  Its not completely to blame, but generational gaps are widened through this cultural cycle of young people assuming they're somehow more equipped with the truth than people older than them.

Don't believe me?  Just watch.  If you're a college student now, the generation behind you will do this to you.

As a pastor and missionary, I've been frustrated with this phenomenon for years.  I admit.  I drank the kool-aid for a while.  However, its been disheartening to see some of my peers and students that I taught in my youth group, abandoned the truths of scripture because they've begun to drink the "kool-aid" of their professors and peers.  They've simply traded one faith system for another.

Popular beliefs are many times not the path to wisdom.  Just because our culture eats it up, doesn't mean we should get fat on it too.

Don't get me wrong, I believe many Christian circles are abandoning truth too and in "the name of Christ".  I'm not a fan of living in ignorance.  I believe we should OWN our faith!  Don't be a Christian just because its the easy thing to do, its what your parents did, its a cultural thing, or because it fits in with your political beliefs.  Know why you believe what you believe.

Never assume you've arrived. 

On another note, never assume that those who DID NOT go to college are uneducated.  As a Chaplain, I'm an Officer in the United States Army.  I work with many enlisted personnel that never went to college.  I have met some of the smartest individuals that I have ever met in this job.  The Army employs some of the most intelligent and most mentally tough people in the world.  College doesn't place you on a pedestal above everyone else.  I have learned in the last 17 years, working professionally, that we have much more to learn through experiences in life.  There is something to be said about being older and more experienced.  Having a family, working professionally, learning to handle finances, traveling, and seeking God in the process has filled me with more knowledge than I ever received studying in school.

Now, I'm not anti-college.  I think higher learning institutions are great.  I have a Bachelor's and Master's.  I spent 7 years studying in higher education.  I plan to go back soon.  But I plan to go back because I recognize that I am a lifelong learner.  Regardless of the degrees I earn, I am not on a higher plain of wisdom than anyone else.

As Socrates once said, "True knowledge exists in knowing that you know nothing."

As Scripture says, "The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight." Proverbs 9:10

Grey hair is a sign of wisdom.  Let's learn from our elders.  Let's also learn humbly, never using our knowledge to puff ourselves up.  This is a lesson I wish I would have understood in my twenties, but I am just now realizing in my late thirties.  Don't waste years of your life abandoning wisdom because you think you're right.  We're never right.