I believe greatly in Christian education and I have personally seen how it has significantly impacted my own children and their spiritual walk. The responsibility of raising my children to love the Lord and walk in His truth has been the greatest call of my life. I wanted to share with you some great insight as to the Biblical importance of Christian Education from my good friend Dr. Glen Schultz.
Dr. Schultz wrote the book “Kingdom Education” many years ago and he has had such a profound influence on our school over the years. I always loved that Dr. Schultz called children “God’s homework assignment” for parents. In his book, Dr. Schultz outlined 10 Principles for Kingdom Education. These principles declare our responsibility as parents to educate and raise our kids to follow God. The principles are:
The Education of Children and Youth:
- Is the primary responsibility of parents (Deuteronomy 6:4-9, 11:18-21, Psalm 78:1-7)
- Is a 24 hour, 7 day-a-week process that begins at birth and goes to maturity (Deuteronomy 6:7,11:19, Proverbs 22:6)
- Has as its primary goals the salvation and discipleship of the next generation (Psalm 78:6-7; Matthew 28:19-20)
- Is based on God’s Word as being absolute truth (Matthew 24:35; Psalm 119)
- Holds Christ as preeminent in the entire educational process (Colossians 2:3, 6-10)
- Must not hinder the spiritual and moral development of the next generation (Matthew 18:6; 19:13-14; Mark 10:13-16; Luke 18:15-17)
- If and when it is delegated to others by parents, it must be done so that all teachers follow these same principles (Exodus 18:21; 1 Samuel 1:27-28; 3:1-10)
- Results in the formation of a worldview or belief system that will be patterned after the worldview of his teachers (Luke 6:40)
- Must lead to true wisdom and understanding by connecting all knowledge to a biblical worldview framework (Romans 1:20,28; Psalm 19:1; Proverbs 3:19; Proverbs 4:5,7; Proverbs 9:10; Psalm 104:24; Psalm 136:5; Jeremiah 10:12; Romans 11:33; Luke 11:52; Colossians 2:3; 1 Corinthians 8:1, 13:8)
- Must have a view of the future that includes the eternal perspective (Colossians 3:1-2; Matthew 6:19-20; 2 Timothy 4:6-8; Acts 20:24; Hebrews 11:13; Colossians 3:23-24)
I am convinced that living by these truths will enable us, as parents, to see the joy described in 3 John 4 which says: “There is no greater joy than to know that my children walk in truth.”
“Children are a gift from the Lord; they are a reward from Him. Children born to a young man are like arrows in a warrior’s hands. How joyful is the man whose quiver is full of them!” Psalm 127:3-4
One of the greatest gifts the Lord has ever given me was my three daughters. In the busyness of life, it is easy to forget just how precious a gift from God our children are. Now that my children are grown, I am reminded just how much I have appreciated these great gifts from God. Psalm 127:3-4 gives us some powerful reasons to appreciate the gift of children.
First, the Psalmist reminds us here that they are a reward from God. A reward is something you should enjoy. My wife and I have always tried to enjoy our children. We wanted to spend as much time with them as we could when they were growing up.
Occasionally, I love to look back at old pictures and remember the days when they were little. What fun times we had while they were growing up. My wife and I always wanted to create a home in which laughter permeated our times together. That same sense of fun is still such a big part of our lives even now that they are grown.
Next, in order to appreciate any gift, I believe we must use it as it was intended. God intended for us as Christian parents for us to raise “warriors” that will impact our culture for Christ. We as parents should desire to point our children towards a lifelong love relationship with Jesus Christ. I can think of no better way to appreciate what the Lord has done in our lives through our children than to give them back to Him to use for His glory.
C.S. Lewis once said: “Nothing that you have not given away will ever be really yours.” I believe that this holds true of children as well.
My wife Karen and I have prayed as parents over the years that God might truly use our kids to bring glory to God. I believe that is the essence of what the Psalmist is saying about our children “being arrows in a warrior’s hands.” I am convinced that God has great plans for our children and those plans include living a life that will not only bring honor and glory to God but also living a life that will accomplish great things for Him!
Finally, the Psalmist reminds us of “how joyful is the man whose quiver is full of them.” I am grateful that God is giving us this opportunity as parents to truly appreciate the gift of children. Personally, I have been blessed to experience the joy that the Psalmist speaks of as I have watched my girls grow in the Lord and be used by Him.
May God truly bless you as appreciate the gift of children from the Lord!
“Abraham never wavered in believing God’s promise. In fact, his faith grew stronger, and in this he brought glory to God. He was fully convinced that God is able to do whatever he promises.” Romans 4:20-21
This summer my wife and I moved our youngest child into college. My daughter was understandably excited but also very nervous. She has always been a great student and hard worker but I could tell she was having some doubts and anxiety about doing college work. As I expected, she did great this past fall in school.
The truth is we all are confronted with doubts at times in our lives. The fear of the unknown can overwhelm us if we are not careful. In these times, I believe that we need to remind ourselves of what we can truly be convinced of in this life. God’s Word gives us promises that we can not only hold onto but be convinced of their certainty. I want to share just a few promises today that you can be certain of.
God is with us as believers always: We will never face a trial or difficulty alone. God has promised to be with us at all times to walk with us through the difficulties of life. Hebrews 13:5 "I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee."
God will finish in you what He started when He saved us: God has a plan and purpose for our lives and we can trust Him to do in us what only He can do. Philippians 1:6 “And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue His work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.”
God’s love for us is everlasting: We need to remember that there is nothing else we can do to make God love us anymore. Jeremiah 31:3 “Long ago the Lord said to Israel: “I have loved you, my people, with an everlasting love. With unfailing love I have drawn you to myself.”
God is faithful and His mercies are new everyday: God is so faithful and each day He provides us with a new set of mercies to help us to face whatever may lie ahead. Lamentations 3:23 “Great is His faithfulness; His mercies begin afresh each morning.”
- We are more than conquerors: Romans 8:37 “in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him that loved us.”
I pray that each of us will be convinced as Paul says in Romans 4:20-21 “that God is able to do whatever He promises.” That is the kind of unwavering faith that I want for my life.
Do you ever catch yourself going to a lot of trouble trying to make others happy? That I believe has become the mantra of 21st century parents. We are doing all we can and spending all we can afford to make our kids happy. It does seem as though we are constantly trying to win the approval of people in all walks of our lives.
We work hard to impress others, we change our plans to keep the peace, we wear certain fashions, and we drive certain cars, and buy houses of stature, and so much more in an attempt to win the approval of others as Paul describes it. When you read and meditate on what Paul is saying in Galatians 1:10, you realize quickly that this attempt to win the approval of others essentially makes us their servants.
When I look back on my life, I realize that the times I spent so valiantly trying to please others were the most miserable times of my life. I work in ministry and it’s so easy to get caught up in trying to make people happy and get your focus off of living to please God.
I have been blessed to lead this growing and vibrant Christian school. I have learned one very hard lesson over the years. That lesson is that I cannot please everyone all the time. I sure tried too many times in the beginning years. Not only did I try and please everyone, I would also find myself hurt anytime someone directed criticism my way. I will never forget that within the first month of being on the job that I received an anonymous letter that really rattled me. The writer told me in the letter that no one liked the changes that I was bringing to the school and that they would not work.
At the time, I was devastated and wanted to quit. Instead of quitting, I got alone with God and began to pray. I began to ask Him about the direction that He would have me to take this school. From that time, God gave me two verses to provide the direction that I needed.
First, God reminded me that the growth of the school was not my concern but rather it was His. He used John 12:32 to make this point to me. That verse declares: “And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, I will draw all men unto me.” I realized at that moment that my job was to bring God glory in all we do. If I lifted Him up, then He promises to take care of whatever growth we may need.
Next, God reaffirmed to me through 2 Corinthians 5:9 that my goal for running this school and my life is to please Him and Him alone. My job is not to try and please everybody as that is completely impossible. “So whether we are here in this body or away from this body, our goal is to please Him.”
As heartbreaking as that letter was, I look back and realize that God was teaching me all I needed to worry about in this job and in my life is pleasing Him, bringing Him glory, and following His directions. Seventeen years later, that little school of less than 200 students and 25 staff members has grown to over 1300 students and 250 staff members. I do not share that with you to brag but to show just what God can do if we follow His direction and not ours.
We will never completely please people and trying to constantly win their approval is futile. We need to be primarily focused only on pleasing God and loving people.