A Letter to Christian Schools in the Crosshairs:

If you missed the media implosion over Coventry Catholic School students last week, you also may have missed the tweet by New York Times reporter Dan Levin seeking dirt on Christian schools (#exposechristianschools).  Or, maybe the Karen Pence controversy because she teaches at a Christian school outside of Washington.  

Last week, I took a call from a member school in California that was rejected as a paying tenant in a church building.  Why?  Because they had a statement of faith that included the sanctity of marriage.  

The past two weeks have revealed the convergence of identity politics and LGBT radicals as they fire wildly at any type of institution that dares to practice faithful Christianity.  And we are increasingly in their sights.  Beyond the attacks, I’m concerned that our schools may react in fear rather than confidence.  "For God has not given us a spirit of fear or timidity, but of power and love and discipline.”  2 Timothy 1:7

As classical Christian schools, public attacks are likely to be a reality for all of us soon.  Of course, there are preparations you can make-- with PR firms and pre-prepared statements.  
The reality is that these activities might delay, but not diffuse the attacks.   We will have to bear to hear the truth we’ve spoken twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools.  And many fools will call us out.  Many parents may respond in fear.
So what are we to do?  
First, I suggest we look to the books of Corinthians, Ephesians, Titus, and Timothy because they speak to a pre-Christian culture in a part of Asia Minor similar to our growing post-Christian culture today.  Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 5: 9-13 that we are not to associate with any "so-called brother" inside our Christian communities if he is advocating immoral behavior.  But, he also says that we should leave judging outsiders to God.  Our schools operate in Christian community.  
We are to keep our student and parent communities protected from these dangerous ideologies. If Christians espouse this type of identity politic, we must be firm in our rejection of those Christians.   At the same time, we are called to show grace and love to outsiders (unbelievers) who are LGBT advocates.  But, we must not confuse the two communities, or the two purposes.  Read Corinthians 5.  It’s clear Paul sees two worlds— a tight Christian community and outsiders.  We should heed this distinction.  
Secondly, we should fear God more than we fear man. I get calls from schools fretting over the attacks.  We know that God will honor our work, though we may face trials.   "Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness.”  James 1:2-4.  
While many people, possibly even a majority, may be taken in by the false rhetoric when that unflattering news story runs, a few of the faithful will see your faithfulness and be attracted to your school.  When we take a stand, winsomely but firmly, potential new “insider” parents see this too.  It acts like a filter to refine our applicants.  And, while in the moment, it may seem as if the nightmare news story will never end, God and His true followers will honor the stand.  That school in California was given a greater building at a lower price because their faithfulness was observed by like-minded Christians.  God is not mocked.  Faithfulness will eventually be rewarded.  We must Keep our heads when all around you are losing theirs.
Thirdly, we should remember who the enemy is.  It can be tempting to distance ourselves from other Christians who are demonized by the left.  This is what they want.  Shame works this way. “Neither foes nor loving friends can hurt us if all men should count with us, but none too much.”  
By affixing labels like xenophobe, racist, or hate to Christians who take a stand, we are made a pariah.  These social warriors will stop at nothing, including deception, to break up Christian resolve.  When we hear of a church, a pastor, or another school under attack, we should run toward them, not distance ourselves.  
Stand boldly.  Act wisely.  Pray daily.  Fear God, not fools.  
David Goodwin 
P.S.  One of our own, Steve Turley, recently addressed this on his video channel.  At times like this, I like to return to Rudyard Kipling’s “If”

David Goodwin is the President of the Association of Classical Christian Schools. 
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Topics: Classical Christian Education

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