Back to School
The sweet sounds of laughter from children being drowned out by the exuberant sounds of parents celebrating can only mean one thing - summer vacation is ending and the beginning of the school year is here!
Having a proper education is critical to one's success. Without an education, one cannot obtain the necessary skills to hold a job, think critically or discern fact from fiction. However, as Dr. King stated, "intelligence is not enough." To be effective, education must combine intelligence with character so that you establish a set of morals for which to stand. The word of God says in Proverbs 8: 12, "I, wisdom, dwell together with prudence; I possess knowledge and discretion (NIV)." "Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding (Proverbs 4:7)." That is why it is vitally important that we as parents stay and encourage our children to stay connected to the kingdom as the 2015 - 2016 academic year begins.
The Apostle Paul wrote in 1 Timothy 4: 12, "don't let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, and in purity (NIV)." Though this was a letter to encourage Timothy in his ministry with elder Christians, there are many concepts that we can draw to encourage our children in school and in life. Through consistent exercise of faith, discipline, hard work, honesty and clean speech, we gain authority and become respected and valued leaders.
Throughout school, our children will be faced with various fears. School can be challenging, especially to those entering new schools and progressing to greater degrees of study. There will also be exams, standardized testing and college preparation and applications. During these times, feelings of anxiety and inadequacy may try to invade the minds of our children. Yet fear not for the word of God declares, "We are more than conquerors through Him who loved us" (Romans 8: 37, KJV) and that we can do all things through Christ who gives us strength. When faced with uncertainty or overwhelmed, turn to God who encourages us to be strong and courageous, never afraid, or discouraged for He is with us wherever we go (Joshua 1: 9).
Fitting in is an important aspect of our children's growth and development. It contributes to their character through the development of friendships and builds confidence and self-esteem A child feels good and important when they feel that they belong. Therefore, we must encourage our children to establish fruitful and pleasant friendships with their peers. Proverbs 27:17 states, "Iron sharpens iron and one man sharpens another." Likewise, Proverbs also cautions us not to become friends with those given to anger or wrath because we will soon find ourselves doing the same. Echoing this verse, the great African American leader Marcus Garvey once said, "Never keep the constant company of anybody who you cannot learn something or reciprocate your learning because constant association with such a person will unconsciously cause you to drift into the peculiar culture or ignorance of that person. Contact with cultured persons and with books is the best companionship you can have and keep."
I pray God's grace will cover and keep our children and that they will have a successful academic year. I speak high grades and commendations, scholarships, and opportunities to broaden their experiences over them. To the parents, I pray that you will have strength and patience throughout the year and speak joyous celebrations over the success of your children. To everyone, may you find peace and comfort in the word of God.
"If You Need a Covering, Meet Me At The Oak."
Pastor Douglas Simmons