Several years ago, one of our high- school Bible teachers became well-known for challenging our students to “hug your mama” as frequently as possible. It may have seemed like a silly suggestion, but his admonition held profound meaning. Showing an act of affection to one’s mother, and doing it often, would bring indescribable joy to Mom–and in some cases, absolute shock!
But what was the point? Randomly embracing mom is a voluntary act of love that speaks volumes to the one receiving the affection. So it is when we act in the same manner to our God. Jesus’ ultimate act of love (John 3:16) was His demonstration of love at Calvary, “while we were yet sinners,” that has freed us from all guilt and sin.
We often embrace what we love. Here at BJA, we conscientiously challenge students to “embrace God’s truth.” To have an affection for or figuratively “hug” God’s truth demonstrates our love for Christ. Students collectively embrace God’s truth when they participate in evangelistic outreach, such as ministering at the Greenville Rescue Mission or witnessing on the New York Mission Trip. Sowing the seed of the gospel is what we encourage students to do wherever they are—letting their “light so shine before men” (Matt. 5:16).
Opportunities for edification—building up of one another—also abound. We encourage our middle- school students to minister to the elderly on Wednesday afternoon outreaches. Our chapel programs challenge students to practice God’s truths in their areas of influence: school, work, sports, and neighborhoods.
Embracing God’s truth is often demonstrated here at school as well. Students serve their classmates as class officers, spirit squad members, student body officers, and many more service-oriented positions. Using musical talents in chapel, whether it be playing the piano or singing in the choir, testifies of a love for God’s truth.
God notices even the most unassuming, subtle acts of love. Students who give up their seats at lunch or pick up litter that is not theirs show their willingness to defer to others. It is also a blessing to hear testimonies of their renewed relationships with Christ and God’s making right broken relationships with parents or other students. Treating others the way we would want to be treated as well as restoring relationships demonstrate students’ affection for Scriptural truths.
We will continue to challenge students to embrace God’s truth. A student’s vibrant love for biblical truth is infectious conduct that rapidly spreads God’s love. Affectionately “hugging” God’s truths is spiritually healthy and pleasing to God.
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.