It seems like it was yesterday when you could hear the last school bell ring letting you know that summer had officially begun. You trade in your backpacks full of books for suitcases full of swimsuits and sunglasses. The sun’s been out and the weather has been hot, even if it was for a short while. VBS and summer vacations have come and gone. But we’ve reached the time of year where it starts getting darker earlier, the leaves will start changing colors and the heat will turn into cool, crisp air. And all this can only mean one thing: school is back in session. Many of the young people are already back in classes, while some will start in the coming weeks. Moms and dads may be done with school, but the thought of sending a child off to their first day of middle school, high school, or even college can be very frightening. Schools today are a battleground of sins and temptations. Will they remember everything we’ve taught them about friends, relationships, drinking, etc.?
Message to the kids/teens: This is a new year. A time to start fresh and start over. It’s easy to get sucked into all the temptations that can be found on a college or high school campus. Satan is prowling like a lion ready to devour you (1 Peter 5:8). But remember who you are. Remember that you wear the name of Christ proudly. Paul wrote in 1 Cor. 11:1 to “imitate me, just as I also imitate Christ.” Remember that our attitude and our personality should always imitate Christ’s attitude. There will be times where it will be hard to do the right thing and you’ll find yourselves between a rock and a hard place, but just remember “if God is for us, who can be against us?” (Rom. 8:31). Remember that you have a family of Christians that are here for you whenever you need them. Don’t be afraid to admit you need help.
Message to the parents: It’s impossible to know everything that goes on while your child is at school. But the best thing you can do is give them a daily reminder of the Lord they serve. Pray with your children each morning before school. Read scriptures with them about temptations and how to overcome them. Write a scripture on a piece of paper or a napkin and put it in their lunch. If their mind is constantly on the Lord, guess who will be on their mind when a problem arises.
Message to the congregation: It is not just the parent’s responsibility to raise these children in the “training and admonition of the Lord” (Eph. 6:4). As a flock of God’s people we are to look after each other. We are to all set an example in “word, in conduct, in love, in spirit, in faith, in purity” (1 Tim. 4:12). Let us all take the responsibility to make sure that everyone continues to grow spiritually. It takes a village to raise a child. Whether you want to admit it or not, every child in this congregation is your own. Remember what it was like to be young? Do whatever you can to help these students succeed.
~Via Kevin Harrington