So we're doing it. The decision has been made. Our son, Caleb, is going to 2nd grade at public school in the fall. For a couple who grew up public school all the way it should be a no brainer, right? I never knew any differently. When I was growing up I don't even think I knew there were Christian schools other than catholic school. But God led us to Penn Christian Academy in East Norriton, PA and Caleb attended for kindergarten and is now finishing 1st grade there. It's been a great experience. He has thrived there. And now, with a tear in my eye, we are counting down the days until his last day of school. And when he gears up for school in the fall, he will be going to our local public elementary school instead. It will be fine, I keep telling myself. Everyone walks a different path. What's right for one may not be right for the other and every child is different. Christian school is just so expensive and a choice had to be made.
Today Ellie and I went to a speech meet at his school. The 1st thru 5th graders had to memorize either a poem or scripture. There were suggestions and guidelines based on their ages, but they are expected to memorize something and then stand up front in the auditorium and speak their "speech" into the microphone, loud and clear. Amazing what we ask our kids to do! Anyway, these last few visits to the school have been emotional for me. I love that they pray before every activity. I love that they talk freely about God and that He is part of their day. I digress. I thought I'd share what Caleb memorized, learned, and recited this morning. I'm so proud of him! And I ask that you pray with me for my son as he bravely changes schools and leaves the "safety" of Penn Christian. I know this is the right thing. And I pray that this is the right time. Because all I ever want is to do what's best for my kids (even though I know I will fall short). And if I trust what God says, that He will be with us, that He will never leave us, then I have to know and trust that God will be with him no matter what school he goes to.
You may not understand. You may think, what's the big deal? But I want to protect my kids from this world for as long as I can. I want them to have their innocence because what's wrong with that? I don't want them to live in a bubble, but I know the world will invade eventually. We can't keep that from happening. And it's important to learn how to live and function in this world. It's just another trust thing, I guess. And just because I fear something doesn't mean it shouldn't be done. Just because I was uncomfortable with heights didn't mean that I shouldn't work at an outdoor ropes course hanging in the trees (what was I thinking?). Our fears should not stop us from living. What a shame when our fears keep us from experiencing life to its fullest.
"Hello, my name is Caleb Willard and I will be saying Matthew 22:37-40. 'Jesus replied, Love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it, Love your neighbor as yourself. All the law and the prophets hang on these two commandments.' This scripture tells us two of God's most important rules, to love Him and to love each other."
Caleb will carry these words, these years and these amazing routines (prayer/daily thoughtfullness/etc.) in his heart wherever he goes. You've set an amazing foundation already. Congratulations and good luck!
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