In the last eighteen months I have periodically taken the time to review publications from various sources about the life and values, and significant investment people make, in Christian schools. I was familiar as a parent, as my children attended a Christian school for three years,-the best three years of their education, from my perspective. I’m not merely trying to be persuasive by saying that. Compared to the local schools they attended, some considered tops in their region, the attitude of life, the Godly perspective on relationships, and the affirming care made an impact on their hearts and minds that lasted for many years.
Although later in life some experiences with Christians caused "speed bumps" in the faith of my children (now grown), much of their lives still reflect a foundation of Godly values similar to those I tried to instill. Having teachers who taught and modeled what I as a parent spoke reinforced important principles that later in life they still remember and are now teaching to their children. Oh how I wish we had a Christian school in the other towns in which we lived so they could have experienced their entire school life in Christian education. In the coming weeks I want to share some of the important nuggets and articles that I have reviewed to provide you talking points in sharing UCA with your neighbors and friends. You have heard me say often that word-of-mouth is the best way to market UCA. You have your own stories to tell. I hope by sharing this information you will also have information that can help you respond when your conversations are met with: “Why do you think it is worth the extra cost?” I want you to have ways to “make your defense to anyone who demands from you an accounting for the hope that is in you. (I Pet 3:15)” Paul may be speaking about faith in Christ, but it is also a reminder that we are called to share the treasure we have found in His community at UCA.
Brian Simmons, current President of ACSI, offers this insight: “There was a day in this country when the Bible provided the foundation for public school curriculum, but those days are over…Today all public schools, including all charter schools, are secular schools that have pushed God out and replaced the Word of God with the philosophies of men.” Depending on your faith perspective, Brian has an interesting perspective on the value of Christian schools. You may not resonate fully with his heavenly thoughts, but they are at least worth a ponder. Regardless of where you are in your walk with God, I suggest that providing your children with a school that reinforces Godly values and prepares them for a living faith in the world around them is, as the Master Card advertisement says, “priceless.” As young people are increasingly bombarded with pressures to conform to lifestyles that do not include God in the equation of life, a UCA education not only prepares them for life, but also for eternity.
More than ever, it is worth the investment in the future of our children. Rather than asking if we can afford it, perhaps the better question is – can we afford not to invest in it? Please, take a few moments to read the article by Brian Simmons attached below.
Rev. J. Loring Carpenter, Interim Head of School