Watchmen on the Schoolyard Walls
School Leader Bible Study
Watchmen on the Schoolyard Walls
Week of September 8, 2019
Most educators relish being a part of a community, and in most communities in our nation, the public school is the center of the community. Our schools either drive or heavily influence the community’s calendar and activities, even for those without any connection to the public school. School mascots often provide local identity; local school competitions define local excellence. Our communities are still mostly family-centric, so as the public school goes, so does the community.
So imagine if all of public schools suddenly disappeared. Cities, towns, and communities would be permanently and drastically altered for public schools. Schools are more than just perfect reflections of their communities, they also influence every aspect of life. Without public schools, our identities as neighborhoods, cities, and a nation are permanently altered. It would not be hyperbole to suggest that public schools are the most influential and most important institutions in our nation. We cannot imagine America without them. Public Schools are at the very center of our nation’s culture.
Maybe this explains why public schools have become ground-zero for social engineers and political agendas. As the children go, the nation goes, so many societal tinkerers focus on the schools. For decades, influencers have utilized our schools to push a multitude of agendas, and unfortunately, many have been very successful. And I do not care which political stripe you paint yourself, both Democrats and Republicans engage in school-based social engineering. Many Christians have disassociated from public schools as a direct result of too many influencers leveraging public schools for their non-educational agendas. Christians who work in public schools see it, too, but they have a different response.
In fact, many of you chose to enter public education for the same reasons that many Christians have distanced themselves from public schools. Instead of surrendering our schools to harmful agendas and influences, however, you have chosen to occupy those same schools. Instead of rushing out, you have rushed in. It reminds me of the Jews who returned to Jerusalem after it had been abandoned for seventy years. In many ways, you have answered the call to be watchmen on the walls (Nehemiah 6:2). You are simultaneously working to strengthen public schools from the inside as well as working to keep out even more destruction. God has strategically placed you inside public schools to be the counterculture of love and hope.
With all that in mind – just imagine public schools without YOU! We know that God sees this world as flavorless and dark without His children. And if Christians are the salt and light of the world, you must be the salt and light for our public schools. You are truly at ground-zero for this nation, placed by God in one of the most strategic places imaginable. You are in the center of public schools, and they are our nation’s heartbeat. I do not exaggerate when I propose that you may be the single most influential group of Christians in our nation today, for you have answered the call in a world so desperate to see God’s grace and love. You are watchmen on the schoolyard walls.
Imagine our communities, our cities, and our nation without YOU dedicating your lives to public education. You have chosen to serve within a system that has been systematically subjected to many harmful influencers. We cannot imagine our communities without their public schools, but we cannot imagine public schools without your presence . . . your influence . . . your love . . . your spirit.
Dear leader: May God strengthen and encourage you this week, for although some Christians cannot comprehend it, you have answered a call from God to serve the children of your community in a public school. You are the men and women whose presence helps balance out “this present darkness” in our nation. (Ephesians 6:12) You may not be called to preach in the classroom, but even better, you are called to love and to let your light shine. Many children would never have experienced the love of Christ without the tender nurturing of a Christian joyfully serving them in a public school.
Many of you were like me, and you would have never come to Christ without the influence of a Christian who served in a public school. In my case, I do not think any of them know the impact they had on me, for I moved too often to even remember their names. I can only imagine how many other lives they touched. I also wonder how many students like me came through your classrooms? None of us can fathom the eternal fruit God can produce because you have answered His call to serve your communities. Keep loving and keep planting seeds, for we can count the apples in a seed, but only God can count the apple trees that sprout from your seeds of faith and professional service.
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