I’m not a pastor and never want to be, I don’t believe it’s a profession you can choose and thus I stay far and clear from anything having to do with seminary even though I grew up in church all of my life. Some of the best pastors I know today came out of the world, this may be hard for many to believe but many of them got saved later on in life as adults which says a lot about the calling of God on an individual.
They have a real story, a real testimony that doesn’t involve being the nice church kid who grew up, went to pastor’s school and is now fulfilling his life’s mission of reaching out to street kids. They are men who sinned most of their lives and but by the grace of God are not dead or in a ditch because of his mercy, I left church at 17 and didn’t really get saved until years later so I understand that mercy.
My point in all of this is to say that maybe the problem here is not one of conformity or lack there of, maybe the problem here is one of choosing verses being chosen. We shouldn’t be hoping that our kids grow up to be pastors and youth leaders, we should be praying that they become anything but, it is a point of pride for most parents to say that their kids became the leader of a church and pride is a bad reason for anyone to enter the ministry.
By all means send your kids to Christian schools, send them to Christian universities but keep them out of the official channels of seminary because many of those “Pastors” will probably never pastor a day in their lives. Instead pray for God to give them wisdom, pray for his mercy in their lives and teach them the stories of grace that God has had in your life and hope that they learn enough to have some of their own even in their future mistakes.
Finally wait until they are called as adults but teach them the right way to live by example in the mean time, (No new testament apostle was ever called as a child, even Paul was said to be born out of time meaning he was probably a child when Jesus walked the earth but God waited) and if they are called test them on their reasons to make sure it’s from God and not from a need to please or conform.
When God calls you to preach then you are the rebel, you’re not going to conform because your calling is not from Moody or any other earthly authority, I’ve been blessed enough to meet those kind of pastors and I can tell you the knowledge God gives them is beyond anything you learn at Seminary school, but it also comes through a lot of praying parents, grandparents, hardship and time.
If a kid wants to be a pastor, it’s no different than him telling you he wants to marry his girlfriend, he’s too young to make that kind of decision now and may derail whatever God has planned for him if you don’t stop him. If he’s called by God then let God be the one to prove you wrong when he’s older and wiser.