Surrendering Schools

By Julie Roys

I fear American Christians have surrendered their communities to the enemy. As Coach Dave Daubenmire, president of Pass the Salt Ministries, writes, “We have failed to realize that the Spiritual War and the Cultural War (are) one and the same. . . . Content to focus on the ‘saving of souls’ we have neglected Jesus’ admonition to ‘occupy until He comes.’ As evil (has) flourished, the Church (has) retreated. . . . We have yielded the earth and submitted to evil.”
These are strong words. Yet, as I’ve joined with other parents advocating for a return to traditional values in our public school, I can’t help but think Coach Daubenmire is right. As one parent mused at our last school board meeting, “How did we get here? At one time, parents and educators partnered together in the common best interests of their students. . . . Parents’ input was welcome at the discussion table . . . Not so . . . anymore. You see, we (parents) suspect that our views will be welcome only if they are free of moral values, absolute truth, and personal accountability. . . ”

I suspect I know how we got here. Parents dropped out. We got busy at church, busy at work, busy at home – and those with more zeal filled the spaces we vacated. The activists, many with agendas opposed to Christianity, simply took over.

I’m ashamed to admit the first school board meeting I’ve ever attended was three months ago. Articles in the student newspaper describing hooking up among co-eds at our school shocked me – and a number of other parents – into action. Then, we discovered the required reading at the school actually promotes casual sex. It also includes graphic sexual descriptions, incredibly mature themes, and profanity. We learned Judeo-Christian values are assaulted in class. A parent disclosed her son was called an idiot for believing in creation. So now, we are engaged. But, we’re wondering – what took us so long? Why were we sitting on our hands while our kids were being fed to the lions?

I confess I don’t have a good answer to that question. But, I do have some suggestions for those of you who may now feel compelled to engage with your school.

First, don’t engage alone. Administrators are notorious for dismissing complaints with the assertion that you’re the only one who’s ever complained about the perceived problem. Second, as much as possible, engage positively. Many teachers, administrators, and school board members – even those who are very liberal – care about kids and are open to reasoned arguments. Third, fight battles you can win. For example, don’t ask for the removal of teaching contraception in health class. That probably won’t fly. Rather, ask for the inclusion of information on the benefits of reserving sex for marriage and on the devastation caused by casual sex. And last, commit to the process for the long haul and engage years before your child arrives at a school. Change takes time. And, I suspect we often lose because those who oppose our influence simply outlast us.

By all means, though, let’s engage. Let’s take back some of the ground we’ve lost. We may not be able to save the world. But, we can use whatever sphere of influence God’s given us to bring some light.

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1 thought on “Surrendering Schools”

  1. Julie’s observation is certainly true that Christians have by default yielded the public square and the public schools to the extremists on the Left. We must now play the role of salt and light in a declining culture. It is not enough to simply show up at meetings. We must also learn to defend the faith in a rational way. My experience has been that a calm reasoned response is the best way to defeat the name-calling and hysteria typical of the Left.

    Consider the case of the child who was called an idiot for believing in creation. Given the latest data, the universe is so poorly understood by scientists that a good rational case can be made for creation. The visible matter in the universe such as stars represents only a small fraction (about 5 percent) of all the matter. Most of the matter is poorly understood “dark matter.” Also, it has been discovered that not only is the universe expanding, but the expansion is accelerating! No one in the scientific community expected that result. The expansion is driven by a mysterious unknown force that has been dubbed “dark energy.”

    The scientific case for creation by God has been spelled out by Lee Strobel in his book The Case for a Creator. A purely scientific book that discusses such issues lucidly is Einstein’s Telescope (The Hunt for Dark Matter and Dark Energy in the Universe) by Evalyn Gates. The point is not that all Christian’s should become scientists, but that it is vitally important to stay informed. There are more scientists who are Christians than one might expect. It is becoming difficult to find an atheist in the hard science departments at most universities. One needs to go over to the philosophy department.

    The critical point is that Christian ideas have stood the test of time over centuries. Christian ideas can be defended, but most Christians have not been taught how. In stark contrast modern leftist ideas led from disaster to catastrophe in the Twentieth Century and continue to blight the world today. One strong indicator is that leftists keep changing their own label. “Liberal” now has such a bad reputation that the leftists have started calling themselves “progressives.”

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