“Dream big. Aim high. Reach for the stars.” After I wrote these words, I discovered that there is an actual inspirational website that uses these words as its URL. “The sky’s the limit” would also fit into this well-worn cliché category, and it seems there are a lot of people challenging others to go beyond what is expected or believed. And what they’re finding out is this: if people are challenged to exceed expectations, you’ll sometimes be pleasantly surprised—they actually do.
We here at BJA have known for a long time that if our students know what is expected of them, they often exceed those requirements. It is a culture established long ago by wise, hard-working, sold-out servants of Jesus Christ who set the example in a most Christlike way. These teachers who were “an example of the believers” (1 Tim. 4:12) to their students sent a strong and powerful message in their decades of service: pursuing excellence is pursuing Christ.
We observe here on a daily basis the rejection of mediocrity in every academic discipline and every extracurricular endeavor. Generally speaking, our students love to excel. They understand the connection between pursuing excellence and pursuing Christ. What a privilege it is to serve alongside them and sense their desire to do their very best for Christ.
In 1902 at age 51, a man named Howard Grose wrote the hymn “Give of Your Best to the Master,” which captures the essence of excellence:
Give of your best to the Master; give of the strength of your youth;
Throw your soul’s fresh, glowing ardor into the battle for truth.
Jesus has set the example, dauntless was He, young and brave;
Give Him your loyal devotion; give Him the best that you have.
Additionally, our own Dr. Bob Sr. was absolutely right when he stated, “It is a sin to do less than your best.” We are blessed to have teachers and students who understand the pursuit of excellence in the context of Christlikeness.
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.