God uses illiterate fisherman and shepherds and farmers. God chooses the weak and foolish things of this world to shame the strong and wise. God is not approached by diplomas and degrees.
So why focus missions mobilisation on those graduating from university?
Isn’t it elitist?
One answer would be turn the question around and ask, is it not concerning that such a tiny number of Christian graduates are going into pastoral ministry? Is it not saddening how quickly the fires of student passion for mission often fizzle out after leaving campus? Is it not a shame that, of the thousands of Christian students graduating from university each year in Kenya, only a fraction of a percent have the opportunity to seriously consider full time gospel ministry as an option? Is it the case that, as the mother of the main character Max in The Distant Boat says, mission should be left to the rich “who don’t have to worry about their next meal” or to the poor “who have nothing to lose”. What about the graduates, those who have “prospects”, something to risk? Does the Lord of the harvest want to use graduates too and teach them how much they must suffer for his name?
Another way to answer the question would be point to a danger of anti-intellectualism in relation to gospel ministry. Just as there is a very real danger of idolising education and intellect and academic papers, there is an equal and opposite danger of demonising education and glorying in ignorance and a pseudo-spiritual check-your-mind-at-the-door experientialism. Piper answers this very well in his little book Think.
A third way to answer the question would be to look historically, at the use of graduates for example in the 18th century English and Welsh revival and in the late 19th century and early 20th century British missionary movement. As Thabiti Anyabwile said in his Cross Conference talk earlier this year:
“We believe that God in his providence and power has often and will again use students to do some of the most world-altering work imaginable.”