Equipping Me to Serve
'08 BS, Ministry
Whether writing music, prose, or poetry; working in the wine and spirits industry or as a lay leader with his church’s youth group, Dale Stinson has always been a person who sees how the story comes together.
“What God wants me to do is to see how the story connects with Him,” says Stinson, whose call to the ministry has put him on the path to becoming a counselor. Stinson, who graduated in 2008 from Belmont’s Adult Degree Program with a Bachelor of Science in Ministry, is currently completing a Master’s Degree from the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.
He grew up in Franklin, TN and waited three years to begin college after completing high school. “I wasn’t ready for college,” says Stinson. He began attending Belmont as music major in 1998 with the goal of working in the music industry but didn’t finish. “Life happens,” says Stinson. “The job I had in the wine and spirits industry was very good. I was very good at selling wine and eventually went into the distribution side. I really enjoyed the perks of my career. The job was everything.”
Eventually, God’s call on his life transformed Stinson personally and professionally. “God gave me the ability to see how lost and broken I was, “ says Stinson. “The experience led me to a desire to know the hope that is in Christ. At first, I realized I could still work in my job in a way that I could glorify God, but then God put the word counseling in my head.” He talked to his wife, Amie Stinson, and said, “I think God wants me to go back to school to become a counselor.”
Stinson said he knew he needed to finish his undergraduate degree before he could pursue a Master’s degree in counseling, and said that he had always wanted to finish his degree at Belmont. “ I prayed that morning to God and asked how am I going to do this,” reflects Stinson. Right at the moment of his prayer, he says he heard a radio advertisement for Belmont’s degree program in Ministry, which convinced him to make the call that would lead to his return to college.
Stinson completed the Ministry program in two years and said that after the first week of classes, he was able to immediately apply what he had studied to his work with the youth in his church. “Belmont’s Ministry program helped equip me to serve,” said Stinson. “I am in the call process God wants me to be in. Belmont has been a very significant part of my call. Graduation still feels like a dream. God worked it in such a way that it was obvious he wanted me to complete this particular program.”