Well, with two weeks under our belt, the 2012-2013 school year is off to an encouraging start! The Lord has really blessed us with a wonderful student body, a dedicated staff, and a great community. Last year, our theme focused on Building Foundations and establishing a great framework to build on. This year, we believed that a natural progression revolved around the opportunity to “GROW”. Many times we can think in terms of numeric growth, and we are very thankful that the Lord has blessed our school in that area by adding 90 students to our student body over the past two years. However, we also believe that there are many other important areas in which we can seek to GROW!
Luke 2:52 states, “And Jesus kept increasing in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men”. I think it is interesting that the text says that Jesus “kept” increasing….even though Jesus is the Son of God, He kept growing in all areas of life. What an amazing thought, and what a tremendous encouragement for each of us!
So, what are some specific areas that we can GROW in as a school? Let me take time to mention several, using the word GROW as an acrostic:
G = Gratitude. It can be so easy to take God’s goodness and faithfulness for granted– much like the 10 lepers that were cleansed with only 1 returning to give Him thanks. We want to “be the one” and work hard at growing our gratitude. I am very thankful for the facility that God has given us. I am also very thankful for the staff that has been assembled here at Faith. Our teachers are great people. They love teaching; they love Christ; and they love their students. What a great combination!
R = Respect. Respecting one another is a very important component in GROWING! I am making it a point to try to listen more to students and parents when they come to my office to discuss a particular topic or concern. I want to communicate through my words, facial expressions, and body language that I value them, and that I really respect what they have to say. Meeting deadlines, not jamming others up, and meeting others’ needs are all ways that I am seeking to show respect to the folks that the Lord brings into my life.
O = Orderliness. I enjoy working in a facility that is clean and neat. I am challenging all of our staff to maintain a neat and orderly classroom environment because I believe it communicates a lot to our students and parents. I believe that a neat and clean environment shows that we are seeking to be good stewards of all that God has given us. I believe that a neat work environment can carry over into other areas of discipline, and I believe it raises the levels of expectations in our students as well.
W = Welcoming. I don’t know about you, but it can be so easy to have blinders on as I go through my day. To go from one thing to the next without paying attention to those around us seems like the norm in our hectic pace and lifestyle. John MacArthur has painted a picture of “Jesus walking slowly through the crowd” seeking to whom He might minister. I love that! I’m really seeking practical ways to talk to parents when I see them. If I don’t know their name, I am trying to be committed to introducing myself to them and welcome them to our school. I also try to ask at least one student each day how I can pray for them, ask them specifically how their day is going, and ask if there is anything that I can help with. I think that it catches some people off guard when a welcoming smile or word is directed at them, and I want Faith Christian School to be a welcoming place for families who want to partner with us in the goals and dreams that we have for our students.
As we begin our 16th year, I’m encouraged by the opportunities that the Lord continues to give us. I’m looking forward to a GREAT year as we seek to GROW in many practical areas and to seek ways of getting to a better place. Our ultimate goal would be to GROW “in favor with God and men” as we seek to please Him and meet the needs of others!