Walking Away? Two Reasons You Should Think Twice
It happens every year and my reaction is always the same. Parents allow their child to leave Christian education and my spirit is crushed. I know it is coming and despite my efforts to convince them otherwise, they choose to walk away. I hear about their friends at the public schools, programs other schools offer, financial challenges, or relocation of the home, etc. Same reasons; different year.
Why does this bother me so? Why does my heart ache for these families and students?
After 26 years of experience, observation and study, I have come to realize that my perspective of education is based on two convictions that I believe are clearly grounded in Scripture:
First, it is apparent that many Christians seem to think that God is not concerned with where their child goes to school. The ultimate purpose of any school is to provide education. It is not built for the purposes of friendships and extracurricular programs. These things are certainly enjoyable, but to be properly educated is the point. God makes it abundantly clear in the Scriptures that the two most important things in life for an adult are to love God and teach his children to do the same (Deut. 6:4-9, Psalms 78:1-8, Ephesians 6:4, Prov. 22:6, Matt. 28:19-20, Col. 2:3,6-10). The terms ‘school’ and ‘education’ may not be found in the Bible, but in the Scriptures do have a great deal to say about teaching, instructing, training, and discipling!
If God clearly states that He wants our children taught, instructed, trained, and discipled – then it is logical and appropriate to conclude that He cares about the education they receive at the school they attend. Education IS the responsibility of the parents and we will be held accountable for the teaching, instructing, training, and discipling they received. Martin Luther wrote, “I advise no one to place his child where the Scriptures do not reign paramount. Every institution that does not unceasingly pursue the study of God’s Word becomes corrupt.”
Second, it is apparent that many Christians think the decision to leave Christian education affects only their family. These parents are not seeing the bigger picture and should think twice about their broad impact. Not only does the child miss the important lessons of a biblical worldview, his/her classmates miss the opportunity to sharpen each other as they pursue truth together (Prov. 27:17). Fewer Christian school graduates means there will be less Christian young people entering the work force that have been intellectually trained to compete with the secular worldview of our society. With fewer properly trained adults, our local communities multiply into a nation that is dominated and controlled by thinkers with no regard for God’s Word and how it relates to work and life. The future of our faith will be determined by how we educate our children. Indeed, every child matters – to all of us.
It’s time that Christians give full attention to what God has to say about education. Walking away FROM a Christian education means walking TO something else. What direction are you headed? We must do everything we can to provide our children with an education that is true to God’s Word.
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