“And all thy children shall be taught of the Lord, and great shall be the peace of thy children (Isaiah 54:13).
Adventist education in places is at a critical crossroad of rising costs and declining enrollments. Yet, we are in the investment business of arriving to learn, and departing to serve, for transformation and restoration to wholeness–redemption. This process has produced the oft-heralded maxim, “the work of education and redemption are one” and maintains that true education is more than “the perusal of a certain course of study”, calling for a strategic re-thinking of how we operate. If we are a people with a flair for speaking, then technology can deliver digital, oral and visual evangelism in real-time bytes to untouched neighborhoods. There should be centralized “digital studios” where students can serve to incorporate social media into spiritual output for community witness. If our intent is to witness through service, should we not operate collaborative work-study centers? Might we not be strategically deliberate and purposefully different, so that our strategy drives our operations, and we are not caught in repetitive activity traps? Every student should know the Word within a career-driven context, and be prepared to deliver that Word creatively.
Education in our schools and churches should consist of a substantive, differentiating program that produces leaders for apocalyptic witness. We follow professional careers not to merely get great jobs but to reach people. The degrees and diplomas are simply a means to an end, to enable us to serve as embedded gospel messengers. It is the glorious outcome, the end in mind, that should drive the curriculum. If vision is “where we are going, then mission must be what we are doing, for “where we are going is what we are doing, and what we are doing is where we are going”. Jesus accepted into his school an ignorant foul-mouthed fisherman, boisterous sons of thunder, a well-heeled Judas, and kept them for three years, full-well knowing that one would betray him, that the other would cut a man’s ear off, and that yet another, a converted Paul, would have been a prior accessory and an accomplice to the crime of conspiracy in stoning Deacon Stephen to death. Jesus started with the outcome—he saw people as they could become. It was the same Peter that wrote the books of Peter, and ministered to the Gentles, and the same Paul that wrote large parts of the New Testament and ministered to both Jew and Gentile. These men entered to learn, departed to served and became transformed for redemption. What is your duty today? Reach out to a student. [http://Wintley%20Phipps]Wintley Phipps – I Give you My Life
Sylvan A. Lashley, MA, MBA, Ed.D., J.D.
Principal, Greater Atlanta Adventist Senior & Berean Christian Junior Academies
An Early Academy/College Institution
401 Hamilton E. Holmes Drive NW, Atlanta, GA 30318
(404) 799-0337; (470) 725-0486, cell; www.gaaaschool.org