If you have been paying attention to the news recently, you likely have seen stories about Karen Pence, the wife of Vice President Mike Pence, who has returned to the teaching staff of a Christian school at which she taught for 12 years. Her notoriety as the Second Lady brought much greater attention to her return. You may have also seen much criticism about her serving at a Christian school, because Christian schools adhere to God’s biblical blueprint for marriage and sexuality. This launched, in the saturated social media age within which we now live, a hashtag, #exposeChristianSchools, the purpose of which has been to point out negative issues that relate to attending or working for such an institution.
Let’s acknowledge here and now that Christian schools are populated by the same people who populate non-Christian schools: sinners. Or, to use a more secularly acceptable term, imperfect people. So it should be no surprise that one can find a situation having occurred in a Christian school that would be deemed troubling. Our society is permeated with efforts to find negative things about people or organizations that have set high goals and standards for behavioral adherence.
What many people don’t often hear about is how attending a Christian school and hearing the simple message of what Christ has done for the world can impact and change hearts. Such was the case at our school three years ago. One of our 5th grade students at the time was having some behavioral issues. His teacher had shared with his mother concerns over his conduct.
“This Christian Thing”
After a bible lesson in class one day, this student asked his teacher about being a Christian. She recalls his being troubled but also how he seemed to be seeking a way to find some kind of peace in his life. In that classroom, later that day, he gave his heart to Christ. A few weeks later, his mom asked to meet with our Administrator. During that meeting, she asked about “this Christian thing” that her son was now espousing. When asked what she was concerned about, she said, “He has changed. He has become more obedient. He is not back-talking like he used to.” [Is this not the proverbial “answer to prayer” that parents seek?] The Administrator said, “Isn’t this a good thing?” Naturally a rhetorical question. Her eyes welled up with tears. She had been battling with her son for a long time. And Someone else entered his life to bring about what she could not.
If people are going to expose Christian schools, let’s also be sure to expose those miracle moments when hearts and minds are changing one at a time by the Person for whom the school is called. Such changes are priceless and immeasurable in their long-term impact. So yes, expose Christian schools and be prepared to look for the good that only Christ can bring.