With the new school year about to start, many Christian parents will be sending their children with trepidation. We’ve all seen the way that public schools have been generally & increasingly steering kids in a negative direction morally & philosophically. Many have taken their children out of public schools to either place them in a Christian school or to homeschool them. Our church actually will play host both to some homeschool parents who are beginning a support group, & again this year to a hybrid middle & high school two days per week (a combination of homeschool & a Christian-based school).
It’s a difficult decision to choose the kind of schooling for your kids. But don’t fall for the idea that Christians are to send their children into a dark place to be the light, or to be a missionary. That’s not their role. We send them to school not to be the influencers (which they’re not equipped to be), but to be influenced.
Not everyone is able to take advantage of those options though. Most are still going to be attending public school. Some schools are better than others depending on the kind of teachers they have, & who is in leadership as administrators & the elected board (the same could be said of churches too, for that matter). We’ve witnessed across the country in recent years a number of parents bravely standing up at school board meetings to challenge & chide them for their harmful practices. We used to look at all teachers as admirable, but now we’re forced to suspiciously side-eye them to size up how bad of an influence they could become behind our backs. In addition, teachers’ unions have become highly politicized liberal organizations that are hurting, not helping, their students.
Yet there are some wonderful teachers & even Christian teachers who view their work as a kind of mission to represent Jesus. They have a tough job. Many teachers are handed children who don’t have good parental guidance or come from broken, dysfunctional homes, & then asked to do an impossible job of managing undisciplined & disrespectful kids.
I feel really bad for kids today because they don’t stand a chance without solid Christian parents to guide them. The world is a hazardous place for children who are being sexualized & indoctrinated in woke-ism. Schools can be places that push alphabet identities & pronouns, & promote secularism & racial division. Why can’t schools stick to basic academics & leave the parenting to parents?
It’s not just school though. It’s the general culture which is growing more antagonistic. The culture hates children & seeks to warp their minds. If you have a child who goes to public school AND carries a smartphone, there’s not a lot that can be done to counteract all they’re being exposed to. They’re immersed in media. Their minds are being discipled by Apple, Google, Netflix, TikTok, YouTube, & Snapchat. At ever earlier ages, kids are struggling with mental health, being lured by alcohol, vaping, & drugs, being fearful of threats of violence, & dabbling in sexual exploration & aberrations.
But I don’t want to use this space just to rant about all the negatives because you may be worried & fearful enough as it is. It’s vital that you pray for your kids to be protected from peer pressure & deceptive philosophies. But don’t just pray, set a guard around them by controlling & limiting their media intake, monitoring what they’re learning in school, & being aware of who they’re hanging with.
Help your child navigate the difficult & treacherous terrain of peer pressure. Warn your kids; prepare them for the temptations; stress wisdom & discernment. Train them how to be kind & considerate even when they disagree with others. Prepare them to be tolerant of the diversity of those who don’t share their biblical worldview or values, while not approving of their confused or deviant behaviors. Teach them not to join in mocking or bullying, even if it’s done to them. But also instill in them the courage to stand their ground for what’s true, right & good — to go against the flow & be unafraid to honor God. Tell them to respect the position of teachers when they can’t respect the person.
No matter what kind of schooling option you choose, you are still the primary teacher. Parents are responsible for the mental & spiritual training of their children. Absolutely bring them to church every week! But don’t rely on the church to do your job. We’re actually going to have some fantastic new resources to help you disciple your own kids very soon.
Don’t let all this negativity numb you into despairing indifference. We’re not called to be anxious or fearful, but to call on the Lord as our strength & shield. Get on your knees & pray for your children; for teachers to lead well; for Christian teachers to witness well; for a positive, safe, orderly environment; for this generation to rise up to reject the world system & its values.
Approach this new school year with faith & pass that hope on to your kids!