Faith in Education Choices

16 Jan

I read something on a blog a few months ago and it has literally drove me crazy ever since.  It just keeps crossing my mind over and over and frustrating me to no end.  Since I have no desire to go back and comment on the blog entry and “debate” with this person, I’m going to express my opinion here if for no other reason, than to clear my mind.

The post was on “debating” the different options of homeschooling, private Christian school and public school for Christian families today.

At one point the author wrote something along the lines of “Sending your kids to public school proves you have more faith as a Christian.” It went on to describe that it takes more faith to trust God to protect your children and exercises your growth as a Christian.

I absolutely could not disagree more with this statement.

Let me start by saying – this entry is NOT a plug for home school and private Christian school to say that if you are sending your children to public school that you are doing anything wrong or sinful, because I am not debating that issue and I’m not claiming that to be true.

What I AM going to address is the shallow understanding of scripture to boldly tell someone they have less faith than you if they send their kids to private school or home school them.

Scripture says “Train up a child in the way he should go, Even when he is old he will not depart from it.” Proverbs 22:6

How are you training up your child in Christ if they are away from you for 8 hours a day in an environment surrounded by unbelievers and scoffers, or even Christians who are refused to talk faith with your child, as well as teach them LIES against scripture (like the Earth being billions of years old and that we came from apes.) ?

It’s not “faith” that brings up a child – it’s TRAINING!!!

A parent can have all the faith they want to have, but if they exercise that faith by putting trust in God to protect their child from the world just because they’re faithful….they are going to one day regret that choice. They have to be a WISE part of the process.

Faith is being sure of what is hoped for and certain of what is unseen. (Hebrews 11:1)

WISDOM – is exercising choices that align with scripture and trusting that God’s INSTRUCTIONS to us (from the Bible) were given to us so when we follow them and we see the reliable results, our faith would increase in believing, HE IS REAL, HE IS WHO HE SAYS HE IS,  HE IS GOD and HE IS GOOD, even when we can’t physically see Him.

Take these two examples:

In Malachi 3:10 we learn that God wants us to test Him according to His promise to us. “Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the Lord Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it.”

On the contrary, we see in Matthew 4:5-7 that we are not to go jump off a cliff and say “I have faith God will save me” and put God to the test.  ”

5 Then the devil took him to the holy city and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. 6 “If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down. For it is written: “‘He will command his angels concerning you, and they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.’”  Jesus answered him, “It is also written: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’

Wisdom says jumping off a cliff will kill you. And God has never commanded us to jump off a cliff.  So, doing so would be testing God to see if He’ll save you.

I’m not saying that we can’t trust God to have our children’s best interest at heart.  We CAN!! And we should!! But – and this is big – allowing them to intentionally walk in harm’s way and then saying “OK God, You take care of them” sounds a lot like testing God to me.

Doing our part to be obedient to scripture but then trusting God to be sovereign over the children He’s loaned to us is TOTALLY DIFFERENT than doing a minimum and “testing God” disguised as “faith” to cover what we choose to willfully lack.

How can your unsaved child, or at best immature in their faith child, make WISE choices from God’s Word when they are JUST learning it themselves? How can they share the light in them if they are yet to be born again?

Your school choice should not be a matter of how much FAITH you have that God is real or can protect us,  but rather because of the WISDOM He gives for your situation through prayer and scripture.

Wouldn’t I be able to say that those who home school or send their child to private school have *more faith* because they have faith that God will give them everything they need to teach at home and/or provide the finances to afford tuition?

Practical Application:

Be extremely cautious of judging someone elses behavior with condemnation for the sole purpose of trying to justify a choice you’re making. (I feel that is the SOLE reason someone made a statement like that.)

Protect and lead your heart away from being deceived that any of us can be the judge of how strong someone’s faith really is and leave that up to the Lord. (Scripture says we can judge the  fruit, but the amount of faith??? Can that really be measured by humans?  And how disappointing for us to waste time cutting each other up with trying.)

*stepping off soapbox*  Sorry for the frustration tonight friends.

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4 Responses to “Faith in Education Choices”

  1. Stephanie January 16, 2013 at 8:16 pm #

    Amen.

  2. joyfullysubmitted January 17, 2013 at 12:16 am #

    LOVE this post!!! SO many of my thoughts (once again) voiced here… God is faithful, and in that faithfulness will lead us as we seek to follow him.

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