“And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and man”—Luke 2:52. It is an incredible thought that Jesus not only grew physically, but mentally, as well. He didn’t come to earth pre-programmed with knowledge of the scriptures and His rescue mission. He learned, just as we do. Mary and Joseph had the distinct privilege of schooling the Son of God. Can you imagine that responsibility? The Father did not leave them without help, though. “In the sanctuary of the home, Jesus received His education, not merely from His parents, but from His heavenly Father. As He grew older, God opened to Him more and more of the great work before Him”—The Youth’s Instructor, August 22, 1901.
Parents, your child’s education, especially that of the scriptures and mission of our movement, starts with you. You have been made a steward of a son or daughter of God. The Father will not leave you without help. He will guide you and your children, through the power of the Holy Spirit, into all truth. Seventh-day Adventist education exists to support and emphasize the work that you have started. Together, along with our local churches, we will fulfill the command that calls each of us to “teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and thou risest up”—Deuteronomy 6:7. You should expect nothing less from our schools.
The education of our children was a priority for God’s people long before this church existed. Consider this statement: “From the earliest times the faithful in Israel had given much care to the education of the youth. The Lord had directed that even from babyhood the children should be taught of His goodness and His greatness, especially as revealed in His law, and shown in the history of Israel. . . . In the days of Christ the town or city that did not provide for the religious instruction of the young was regarded as under the curse of God”—The Desire of Ages, p. 69. How much more should we value the instruction of our youth, knowing that we are in the eleventh hour of earth’s history? Take some time and continue to read the quote in its full context. You’ll see that tradition and worthless material supplanted the aim of true education. We can’t afford to make the same mistake.
Our commitment to you is to reveal the character of God each hour of each day to our children. We will do this through prayer, Bible study, and service activities. This commitment also includes helping our children understand and take part in the mission of our movement. I ask that you pray for revival and reformation among our administrators, teachers, and students. Pray that our students will see Christ in us as we prepare them for this world and for the world to come.
Trevor Schlisner is the Northern New England Conference superintendent of schools.