I love the sounds I hear when walking the elementary halls: teaching, praising, learning, laughing, creating, correcting, praying, singing, guiding, playing, and so much more. Even more refreshing is the underlying tone—the love of Christ. His love is why we do what we do, and it is the heart of what we want to surround our students with and what we want them to learn.
The other day I turned the corner to head down our back hallway and saw a teacher talking with a student. It was obviously a moment of correction, but what impressed me was the teacher’s tone and expression as she lovingly used Scripture to shine truth on the heart issue and guide the student back to where she needed to be. In that moment the teacher did so much more than just get the student to follow a classroom rule—she planted truth into the child’s heart that can grow and encourage her love for Christ. That happened because the teacher was willing to take time to model Christ’s love for and guidance of us.
First John 4:19 reminds us, “We love him, because he first loved us.” This simple statement leads to a deeper understanding of how the Master Teacher intended us to love—by example. He loved us first and spent His entire earthly ministry showing us how to love others through meeting needs, showing kindness, teaching, offering forgiveness, extending unconditional mercy and grace, and ultimately giving His own life for ours.
Now it’s our turn. BJA’s students, faculty, and staff are focusing on Matthew 5:16 this school year: “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” As we “let our lights shine,” we are following in the footsteps of Christ in illuminating the lives of the people around us with His love. Therein lies the key to “challenging students to love Jesus Christ”—by faithfully shining His love into our students’ lives, we can nurture them in love for Christ and for people.
From the time the first student walks through our doors until the last family pulls out of carline, our day is filled with moments that give opportunities to shine kindness, mercy, forgiveness, grace, and love into the hearts and lives of the children God has given us the privilege of serving. This is why the sounds coming from our classrooms are so beautiful. Every brush stroke in the art room, each note from the music room, the recitation of Scripture, the rhythm of phonics repetition, and the scratching of pencils on math pages represents an opportunity for students to see, feel, and hear the love of Christ and to grow in their love for Him.
Bob Jones Academy exists to assist like-minded Christian parents in challenging students to love Jesus Christ, to embrace God’s truth, to exercise integrity, to pursue excellence, and to serve others.