School bullying is reaching epidemic proportions because discipline is outdated in public schools. With no consequences to fear, juvenile delinquents feel free to boldly do the devil's
dirty work for him. Today even teachers are being attacked, both verbally and physically. Many suffer such psychological distress
from uncontrollable pupils they finally give up and leave the profession. For them, school is nothing but a zoo full of wild
One TV "child developmental expert" gives advice on child-raising.
You are told never to "smack" (spank) your children, just hold them to
restrain them till the tantrum is over. Then you are supposed to send the child
to a special place for "time-out" till he or she is ready to behave and apologize for the rude behavior. That advice is to
be applied even to the most aggressive, foul-mouthed brats. I was horrified to
watch four-and-five-year olds curse at their mother and call her degrading names when they didn't get their way. I would have faced a whirlwind of wrath if I'd dared treat any adult that way when I was a kid.
One TV show depicts weepy, helpless, parents who stand helplessly by as their own kids viciously insult
them and trash the house for good measure. But oh, no, there's no such thing as bad children, only inadequate parents. Mom and Dad are forbidden to lay a hand
on verbally abusive kids to correct them.
One day I saw a tantrum-throwing brat at the mall who plainly did not want to go grocery shopping with
his father. The father pinned the boy's flailing arms to his side as they went along. Helplessly the beleaguered man pleaded
with his son to behave and quiet down. The boy's legs dragged the floor as his dad half-carried him toward the supermarket.
What made my mouth hang open in shock was this: The kid couldn't have been younger than ten. He wasn't much shorter than his
dad. He looked almost as tall as myself! What an outlandish sight, a pre-teen kicking up a whiny fuss like a tiny toddler
going through his terrible two's! Society might be sliding down to hell in a supermarket cart because it has rejected the
Word of God, but everyday reality is getting to be more bizarre than fiction!
Only problem with holding a supermarket-trashing toddler to restrain him instead of giving him a quick
swat on the seat is this: What do you do when the kid no longer looks up to you, but has stretched out so much his feet drags
the floor and you break your back just trying to pick all 160 pounds of him up? If
a sixteen-year-old has never learned respect for authority, he would only laugh if you told him to go sit in a corner. If
you tried to ground him, he'd just hop into his car and drive off laughing. Once your feisty little toddler is well into his
teens, he's big and strong enough to hog-tie you and invite the whole gang over
for a beer party.
Bud Gives Old Dad The Business
Just imagine Bud Jr. interacting with Big Bud, his dad. In
the first scenario Big Bud puts into practice the diplomacy he’s learned at his local parenting class.
Big Bud to Bud Jr.: I hate to sound critical, but your room is a bit unhygenic and malodorous. Pretty please, Bud Jr., won’t you rectify the situation? Come, show me how creative we can be in applying the old elbow grease.
I’ll even go fetch the Ajax for you, to lend you a hand.
Bud Jr. knows he’s three inches higher than his dad. He
sneers down at him as if he were pond scum and says: "Shove off, you old $*&@! It’s
Big Bud loses his rag: "Shut up, you stupid punk! I’m
the one who pays the rent to keep this roof over your head, so I get to make the rules. And if you don’t like it you
can pack up all your stinking clothes in a garbage bag and go can go sleep in the gutter!"
Bud Jr. glares at him and goes up to his room, cursing.
Big Bud is a lost sinner. He’s physically too small
to discipline Bud Jr. His status as breadwinner of the home is the only weapon
he has at his disposal. Bud Jr. gave in to avoid being thrown out into the street,
but the air is supercharged with hostility and tension. How would Big Bud have
handled the crisis had he been a Christian?
Big Bud to Bud Jr., who is fresh from school.: "Son, I don’t want to sound unkind, but I can smell
your track shoes and sweat shirts all the way down here. Please go straighten
Bud Jr.: "($%@#! off, you old *%&$#! It’s MY
Big Bud: "Hey, where did you learn THAT kind of talk? You didn’t learn it from me!"
Bud Jr.: "None of your &%#$@ business. Shut up!"
Big Bud, calmly: "Son, it may be your room, but the Lord has placed me in authority over this home as
its head, and I am to be respected. Now you apologize to me and then I’ll decide your punishment for swearing at me."
Bud Jr.: "&$#*&!! I’m sick of the way you’re always shoving religion down my throat. Don’t ever preach at me again, you little worm."
Big Bud applies a bit of tough love: "Son, go pack your things.
If you can’t abide by my rules, you can’t stay here anymore! I
won’t have you acting that way around little Ruthie and Jamie."
Bud Jr.: "Fine, I’ll stay with Gary Bradley. His
dad’s real cool. He lets Gary drive his car and drink out of his liquor
Big Bud: "If you go over there, you'll STILL be under my rules, because I hold legal jurisdiction over
you. You take one sip out of Mr. Bradley's liquor cabinet and I'll swear out
a warrant on him for serving liquor to a minor."
Bud Jr.: "Christians aren't supposed to get anybody into trouble!"
Big Bud: "All I know is, son, if you don't apologize right now to your dad and take your punishment
like a man, you be in big trouble with MY Dad, because I'm gonna tell him all about you and ask Him to deal with you Himself
in ways that I can't. In the Bible, God always assigns the hardest cases of judgment
to the highest authorities. And if you think I'M hard on you, you ain't seen nothin’ yet."
Bud Jr. doesn't shout hallelujah but mumbles an apology He
accepts a six-month sentence of curtailed social life and extra household chores, along with a can of Ajax.
Rights And Responsibilities Go Hand-In-Hand
Today, children claim the same rights as adults. If that's
so, then adult responsibilities should go hand-in-hand with adult rights. One person's rights end where someone else's rights
are infringed on. Delinquents should take the same consequences as adults would for defacing property and destroying someone
else’s car. No, not jail. That's a disgusting, degrading place, even for
adults. The best idea, I think, would be a Christian boot camp which would instill
discipline into them and teach them good citizenship. They should have a drill
sergeant figure overseeing their rehabilitation, who would make them snap to attention in formation and say "Yes, Sir!" In
the ideal delinquent camp, all junk food would be cut out. It only makes kids
hyper. Instead, wholegrain bread, fresh fruit and vegetables would be served. Devotions would be read and chapel attendance
required. Bedtime would be strictly observed. Vigorous chores would be assigned
to every able-bodied kid each day, rain or shine. The kids would be paid piecework wages, which would go toward compensating
their victims for the damage they caused. Nothing like good old-fashioned physical work to wear out mischief makers so that
they're too tired to create chaos. Demerits would be issued whenever trash was thrown around or fights started.
Corporal punishment has a built-in problem in that some individuals find it hard to draw the line between
what's reasonable and what isn't. If spanking isn't an option, there are other strict ways to discipline offenders who insist on being treated like adults. Those who
break the rules of the camp's code of conduct would be isolated from the other inmates until they decided to buckle down and
learn a few manners.
In certain countries it's illegal to tap your kid's Seat of Education to calm his histrionics when you
refuse to buy him candy in the supermarket. And if your kid cusses you out for
asking him to go to bed, think twice before fetching the fly swatter. Your child might be "taken into care", (put in a foster home) and you might never get him back (though some defeated parents might count that
Today's kids are legal experts. If they cause chaos in
a neighborhood or assault the neighbors, they know their rights. If you use physical
force to protect yourself from burglars who have broken into your home to harm you or your family, it's YOU who are liable
to get into trouble with the law! In poverty-ridden neighborhoods, kids feel
it’s their right to set fire to a new car someone else has worked and sweated
their guts out to earn. Wild teens often wear hoods to conceal their identity
from surveillance cameras. But even if caught and tried, they usually get a slap-on-the-wrist sentence while the hapless property
owner is left holding the bag for the damages.
Many Christian parents have seen the light and are now home schooling their children to prevent them
from picking up the bad habits of the "cool crowd" which calls the shots in secular
high schools. These parents have invested far too much love and prayer
in their precious children to allow them to be contaminated by the degenerate filth infesting
today's public schools. My heart goes out to poorer parents who MUST work full-time, and can't possibly afford to home-school
or send their kids to private Christian academies.
A No-Win Situation
It's a vicious circle. The cost of living is way out of
sight. Both parents in the majority of homes must work, not for luxuries, but
to cover basic costs of existence. In the worst case scenario, a child is left
to strangers to raise, and when he gets older, he virtually raises himself. Instead
of one big happy family interacting around the dinner table, you have a teenager nuking a frozen burrito in the microwave
if he bothers to eat at home at all. By the time he sees his parents, they're way too frazzled to interact much with him.
All they want to do is collapse in front of the TV before getting ready to tackle yet another hard working day.
The vacuum left by the parents’ absence must be filled.
If the parents aren't there to instill basic moral values into their kids, who will?
There's the TV, the Internet, the movies, and the kid's school pals. They
don't know right from wrong either because no one was around to teach them. That's a big part of the reason so many kids are
causing trouble today. They never were taught the reality of sin, or their need
for salvation in Jesus Christ.
The worst thing of all is, millions of mothers would love to be home with their children to raise them
themselves, at least in their formative years. But this perverse economy demands
that both parents must work to provide the basics. And even those women who are lucky enough to be financially able to stay
home with their children are made to feel ashamed for doing so. That's how little the tough job of parenting is valued by
today's modern materialistic society! That's saying that it is of no importance to instill good character traits into the
next generation, so that they become well-adjusted, loving adults! Even horse breeders and dog trainers are shown more respect
than full-time mothers, just because they earn good money making their animals the best that they can be. The ugly truth is: Money doesn't just talk, it swears! In this fallen world money can buy you just about
anything, even love and respect. And every worthwhile thing can be measured in dollars and cents! After all, you can't buy a BMW with love!
The Perils Of Puppy Love
Speaking of dog trainers, let's imagine this scenario: Roger, who lives alone and has just adopted a
baby St. Bernard from the animal shelter, must go off on business for six months. Roger doesn't want to shell out hard cash to pay a qualified dog trainer to care for the
puppy and train him in his absence. Instead, a kind neighbor will just drop by periodically to refill his food and water bowls.
Then the man will simply leave the house and let the dog go about his business. Roger sincerely believes that firm training
is psychologically harmful to animals as well as people. Freedom to do as one
pleases is far better. Surely as the dog grows older he will automatically grow up to be a well-mannered pooch. Besides, the
neighbor will leave the TV on for the dog to watch so he will learn proper social skills.
Six months pass. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to guess what months of neglect have done to the
dog. When Roger comes home, he is overpowered by the stench left by a dog who
has never been paper-trained. All the stuffing has been ripped out of Roger's
leather furniture. The dog has made mincemeat out of his moccasins. Every table
lamp is in shards. Total devastation.
Roger goes ballistic. He swats the 150-pound puppy with
a copy of the Wall Street Journal. "Bad dog!" he scolds. He goes over to the TV and kicks it. "I blame YOU for corrupting
my dog!" he shouts. "If only this stupid dog hadn't learned disorderly behavior
from YOU instead of how to live together in harmony!"
Roger orders his dog to sit. Instead, the dog jumps up
on Roger and tries to grab the Twinkie out of his hand. When Roger tries to take it back, his "cute little puppy" bites him.
A far-fetched scenario? Yes it is, because you would seldom,
if ever, hear of such neglect on the part of a man who paid hundreds of dollars to buy a purebred St. Bernard. Most likely, the dog would have received the best of training and care because the owner had invested so
much in him. Roger's St. Bernard has become a wild animal instead of a domesticated
pet due to Roger's own indifference and refusal to make sacrifices to train him.
A similar thing is happening to precious children worldwide, just because their parents are unwilling
(or unable) to spend time with them to raise them in the fear of the Lord. And
by the fear of the Lord, I mean reverential respect, not being so afraid of God that you're afraid to get to know Him and
love Him. That dog had no reverential fear toward his owner because no one had
been there to properly train the dog to know any better. So he reverted to his natural wild nature. Today in Britain a new
phenomenon has arisen: what is referred to as "feral" (wild) children. Children of countless poor homes have been left to
fend for themselves and figure out for themselves what is acceptable and what isn't. They are never taught about a Living
Christ Who longs to transform their lives and show them a higher way to live. Christ has been kicked out of public schools
except as a brief mention in courses like "Comparative Religions". According to this lost generation, anything goes, so long
as it ain't you who gets hurt. Because they fear no consequences for breaking
it, rebellious kids could care less about the Golden Rule: Do unto others and you would have them do unto you. Their only
rule is: "If it feels good, do it."
God wants parents to spend quality time (and as much quantity time as possible) with their children,
and to teach them the solid truths of His Holy Word from an early age. As the sapling is bent, so grows the tree. In Ephesians 6:4, Paul seems to be cautioning fathers not to be harsh with their children as they properly
train their children. The verse says: And ye fathers, provoke not your children
to wrath, but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. Even though children need a proper spiritual upbringing,
they must also be treated with loving consideration as fellow human beings.
Ephesians 6:4: Proverbs 22:6 makes a rock-solid promise: Train up a child in the way he should go, and
when he is old, he will not depart from it. A child raised in a Christian home might have his contrary moments as all kids
do, but deep down he will know the truth, because he received it at your knee as a small child. And if such a child should
ever stray from that truth, it behooves a godly parent to stand in the gap for him in trusting faith that he will eventually
awaken to a close relationship with Jesus, Who is the Way, the Truth and the Life.
Turned Off By Hypocrites
It isn’t just non-Christians who devote their lives to crass consumerism, to the spiritual detriment
of their children. Nominal churchgoers also pledge allegiance to the god of materialism. Why? So they won’t get ostracized by others they look up to. My, but religious folks amused my family. There was a gigantic church just across the street from us. It had several imposing
Roman columns and took up half a city block. I’d often wonder: Is God really
impressed by all the big money which went into building that big castle? Does He really live there?
On Sundays we’d gawk out the windows and watch what I called the “Peacock Parade”.
With studied gallantry, sharp-suited men in spit-and-polish shoes would exit their brand new cars and go open the doors for
their wives, all resplendent in beauty-shop coiffures and fine fashions. Out
the back seat tumbled two or three kids. The little girls, their shining tresses
all ribboned and curled, invariably wore lacy, flowery dresses and black patent leather shoes with lacy socks. Even the most
rambunctious little boys chafing in their little suits would remember that dreaded “hickory” Daddy could twist
off the big oak tree in the churchyard. So they’d put on their finest Sunday
manners and walk sedately beside their fathers. Hand in hand, the picture-perfect
family would smile sweetly and make their grand entrance into the awesome temple which would have been the envy of Julius
I remember my dad grinning and saying, “How much would those folks love Jesus if they had to go
to church wearing burlap sacks and driving an old junk car?” Spying out the window, he’d observed more than one
heated spat taking place in those fancy cars. But once husband and wife got out
to greet their church friends, they’d smile like angels, as if on cue. After
all, they were people of good breeding and must play the part, especially when they were in the public eye.
Increasingly, I saw the shallowness of typical modern-day churchianity.
It was just so much refined, pretty cotton candy that quickly dissolves to nothingness in your mouth.
It was near impossible to get my dad to set foot in a church. All his supervisors were fine upstanding members of the most popular denominations. But their manner of life belied their
profession of faith in Christ. One of the few exceptions was Red, one of Dad’s
buddies at work. This man, Dad said, had once gotten down on his knees in front
of a belligerent enemy, and prayed for him, rather than seeking vengeance.
Red pastored a small country church, one which boasted neither refined manners nor Roman columns. One
Sunday Dad took me out there to hear him preach. No soft-spun beating around the bush with that man. Red believed in forgiveness,
but he still knew a fiery hell awaited unrepentant sinners. Red could preach a
roof-raising sermon on hellfire and brimstone that kept people from dozing off. Dad
said, “I can’t go with all that screaming.” But at least Red
wasn’t a hypocrite, and his sermons were much more thrilling than the airbrushed fluff which passes for gospel preaching
Sadly, my dad got turned off by his pretentious church-going bosses, although he was friends with one
man who “walked his talk”. It’s a shame that hypocrites claim
to represent the humble Christ of the Bible. Dad knew religious folks who worshipped
their WASP Jesus on Sunday, but badmouthed black folks on Monday. How ironic
that most of those fine churches had foreign mission boards intent on reaching “darkest Africa” for Jesus! And it would have mortified all those gentlefolk to learn that Jesus was not a right-wing
WASP, at all, but a Jew whose teachings were so revolutionary they rattled the Establishment of His day.
One family friend, a minister and piano dealer, often bragged about his shady business dealings. He just couldn’t show Dad the Light. At
work, Dad’s supervisors would come by and watch him toiling away at his
manual labor and say, “C....., if only you’d join the RIGHT clubs, go to the RIGHT parties to meet the RIGHT people,
and join the RIGHT church, you’d get promoted to a nice desk position in a hurry, and your life could be so much NICER!” So, church was merely a means to an end.
Before daily devotions in public schools were outlawed by the U.S. Supreme Court (and for a while thereafter),
a brief Scripture passage would be read and the Lord’s Prayer recited by a student volunteer ( I never did volunteer). I’d just scowl and sit in the back of the room as the others rose and bowed
their heads. I thought, What a waste of time! If God exists at all, He isn’t
impacting THEIR lives very much. Most of these kids hate blacks, and even the Ku klux Klan claims to be Christian! I,
who had been saved at the age of twelve, had grown so hostile toward religion
I even admired Madalyn Murray O’Hair, the woman who fought to take prayer out of the schools.
I knew that most of those kids were forced to go to church every Sunday at the “right” denominations
(in each locality one would be more acceptable than the other). The idea was
this: Warm a padded pew for two hours on Sunday, and God will look the other
way as you raise hell the rest of the week.
Those hypocrites saw salvation as a one-dose inoculation against going to hell. “Once-saved-always-saved” was their passport to an easy life of unbridled compromise
with this world of sin. I recall a crowd of kids spilling out of school on that fateful November afternoon in 1963. They’d
just heard some news that really made their day. President Kennedy had just been shot.
The delirious cheering rose up to heaven and grieved the heart of
God. Why were they so happy? Because
they hated blacks, and Kennedy had treated them like real human beings. So I reasoned,
How can I possibly believe God is good when all those churchgoers act like the
Care must be taken by preachers to ensure that ALL conversions are genuine, that people have not responded
to altar calls out of peer pressure. A superficial “decision for Christ”
is NOT the same as deep, daily surrender, accompanied by the “washing of
regeneration (newness of life) and renewing of the Holy Ghost” spoken of in Titus
3:5 . Salvation is contingent upon repentance toward God and faith
toward the Lord Jesus Christ (Acts 20:21).
This is an individual experience. No one is ever automatically saved by being brought up in church, or christened as an infant!
Even genuine believers can fall away from Christ unto perdition. I recall one young Christian brother
back in the early 70’s, during the height of the “Jesus Revolution”.
He was full of zeal and raring to go for Jesus. He married a deeply spiritual
woman who was utterly devoted to him. In his middle years he repaid her by turning
from Christ and adopting such an indecent lifestyle she had no choice but to divorce him.
The happy-go-lucky reprobate took off like a shot, leaving his poor wife with three kids to raise on
her own. She didn’t receive a dime from that bum. Perhaps “once-saved-always-saved” emboldened him to behave like this. He
had been an avid student of the Bible in his youth. He must have overlooked I Timothy 5:8: But if anyone doesn’t
provide for his own family, especially those of his own house, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.
Now I believe that eternal security in Christ hinges upon four principles. For easier recollection, I suggest you remember the acronym LORD.
1. A believer must WANT to remain under the covering of
the Blood of Jesus. It is
possible to cast off your own faith (see I Timothy 5:12).
The apostle Peter warns: For if after they have escaped the pollutions
of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, and are once again entangled in them and overcome
by them, the end of those people is worse than the beginning. For it would have been better for them NOT to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they had known it, to turn from God’s holy commandment. But it has happened to them
just as the proverb says: The dog has returned to his own vomit, and the sow that
was washed to her wallowing in the mud (II Peter 2: 20-22). Jesus says in John
14:15: If ye love me keep My Commandments.
And again, in verse 23: If a man love me, he will keep my words.
2. So long as the believer walks in an attitude of reverent
dependence upon Christ and obedience to His Lordship, and is careful not to turn
the grace of God into a license to commit sin, he remains justified by faith and acceptable to God the Father. We stand by faith, and must not provoke Him. For if God didn’t spare the natural branches (unbelieving Israel), take
heed to your ways, lest he also not spare you. Consider the goodness and the
severity of God: on those who apostatized, severity.; but toward you, goodness,
IF you continue in His goodness: otherwise you also shall be CUT OFF (Romans
11:21-22). Jesus says in Revelation 3:5: He who overcomes shall be clothed in white garments; AND I WILL
NOT BLOT HIS NAME OUT OF THE BOOK OF LIFE, but I will acknowledge his name before
the Father and His angels. The clear inference here is that it impossible
to have your name blotted out of His Book if you repudiate His Lordship over your life and make the things of this world your
god. This is rebellion and idolatry, the two things which, unrepented of, will
take a believer out from under the covering of the Blood of Christ. When that
happens, God sees our sins instead of the righteousness of Christ.
Remain in Christ by Faith
3. In order to maintain our spiritual lives, we must remain in Christ,
ever-conscious that He is our only goodness. In John chapter 15, Christ is likened to a grape vine, and his disciples to branches. If we refuse to submit to His Lordship, turn away from Him, and cut off communication with Him, the precious
sap of His Life no longer flows into our innermost being to nourish us, and we wither (see John 15:6). So long as an infant receives milk from its mother, it will live and grow.
It it stops eating, it dies. For optimum spiritual health the soul must be nourished on God’s Word, the Bible. Only then can grow into the likeness of Christ
(Romans 8:29). God already sees true believers as righteous in Christ,
although the unperfected soul of the believer is still growing in grace and maturing in the knowledge if Him (II Peter 3:18).
Daily Check in with God
4. Daily touch base with God. Repent of all known sins or
bad attitudes, as soon as God alerts your conscience to them. While we still live
in our mortal body, we all, at times, sin and fall short of the Glory
of God. Even after conversion it is imperative to daily abide in an attitude
of repentant faith. Notice in I John I: 8-9: If WE (John includes himself here) say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the Truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive our sins, and to cleanse
us from all unrighteousness.
Unconditional eternal security is indeed a shaky doctrine. Romans
12:2 admonishes every believer: Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed
(into Christ’s likeness) by the renewing of your mind. This is the daily
process of the sanctification of the soul. The soul must be cultivated like a
garden. You don’t get a good harvest by tossing a few seeds onto a patch
of dirt and forgetting to weed and water it. In Philippians 2:12-13, the apostle
Paul says: Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. For it is God Who is working in you according to His own good pleasure.
Passive Bullying-Satan’s Cold War
Evidently those kids at my school had never had these unpopular truths expounded to them from their
lukewarm church pulpits. If they did hear them, they either didn’t sink
in or the power to live by these principles was absent from their souls. II Timothy
3:5 declares that in the latter days religious people will possess a form of godliness, but will reject the power of true
godliness ( that of the Holy Spirit).
Having benefited little from the anemic preaching at their
churches, the kids made conformity to the “cool crowd” their real religion.
Apathetic churchgoers, as well as aggressive bullies, are driven solely by the need to be liked by the “right”
people. Keeping quiet and doing nothing to befriend bullied students is always
the safest policy to follow. So I was subjected to passive, as well as active
bullying. Kids find it safest to “go with the flow” and not to “make waves”. But even sewage goes with the flow down into the toilet. Compromisers
who fear men rather than God will not only make waves, they’ll land in hell make a big splash, rejected by God as cowards
The goals of passive bullying: To make the school scapegoat
feel unwanted, to rob him of affirmation as a worthwhile person, and to rip away his veil of basic human dignity by exposing
him to glaring scorn. For me, it took the form of deliberate petty meanness.
At lunch time, almost no one would condescend to sit with me. I usually
munched my peanut butter sandwich alone. In gym class, I was always the last
one chosen for teams. Now I know I surf the Web instead of the waves, but there
were others just as unathletic as myself.
In Art Class (my favorite),
one boy would whisper out loud to his friend about how I must have the mange and must be full of maggots. He’d sneer at me out the corner of his serpentine eyes.
Bad Billy just went on and on, inspecting me like a piece of diseased meat, even slamming me for the way I walked. He knocked
me as being an example of looking “graceful”. His sarcastic comment
reflected the popular prejudice against any girl who wasn’t a tiny doll with toothpick arms. Billy’s lanky, goofy sidekick was less malicious, but
he went along with his vicious buddy, just because he idolized him and wanted
his approval. That snake Billy was one to talk about grace. He lacked the only
kind of grace that could get him into heaven, the Grace of God.
I detested high school, though I got good grades. I wouldn’t relive my teens for all of Bill Gates’
billions. I wish I could purge a few ugly faces out of my memory, just like I can
flush unwanted data out of my computer by dragging it down to the “trash”
icon. One advantage of being in my 50’s is I’m that much closer to meeting my Lord face-to-face and asking Him
why so much evil is permitted in this world.
I hated school assemblies, regardless of their content. I
had to attend, or my absence would have been reported. I’d always sit at
the end of a row and slump down in the dark, wishing I could make myself invisible.
Only one other girl (a genius I.Q.) would ever deign to sit with me. Everyone
else gave me plenty of room, some tittering and saying, “There’s a seat over there!” Tiny paper wads would fly in my direction, just small enough to annoy me without getting the teacher’s
attention. Only one girl ever admitted to being a Christian
and tried to “walk her talk”. But I knew that in the Bible Belt, it was a statistical improbability that only
one born-again Christian attended Wormwood High.
Nominal Christians, like unbelievers, live for the moment, and only when they get older or contract
a terminal illness will they reflect upon their duties toward their Creator. How many professing Christian teenagers have got the guts to actually live out the love of Jesus Christ when popularity with
their peer group is on the line? I honestly feel for kids of today, the way they’re
forever under pressure to conform to every indecent trend the devil sends along, and nothing is ever right or wrong, it’s
only how you look at things. High school is a much worse place to be now than when I served time in one, because now teachers and principals are too scared to even scold rotten punks who make their own lives a misery. They’re afraid of getting sued for bringing an alleged troublemaker
to book for allegedly threatening some alleged harm to some alleged victim. Mustn’t ever quash the bully’s constitutional right to express himself.
You might even get fired if your
personal belief system isn’t warm and fuzzy enough to let him off with a sweet smile.
My heart goes out to every Christian student who is making a courageous stand for Christ in today’s
godless secular schools, which are often little more than dumping grounds for
undisciplined, neglected kids. It’s tough to mean business for Jesus when you have to mix every day with hard, hostile peers. Christian nonconformists are rare. I admire these unsung heroes for being on the front lines every school day and defending godliness in an
ungodly environment. Although I sure don’t miss my teenage years, the way
satan’s servants singled me out to sacrifice to their god of hatred!
I know it can’t be easy to be a lone light in the midst of gross darkness. It is a miracle of
God’s grace, that the light within you can go on burning when satan’s vast army
threatens to snuff it out.
Christian teenager, I’m proud of you. Shine for Jesus. I know the pressure’s on, but dare
to be different. Jesus wasn’t ashamed to die for you. Let Christ live His Life in and through you. Your life is the only Bible some of your peers will ever read.
Be a courageous soldier of righteousness. Don’t ever hide your light under a basket (Matt. 5:15-16). You have no reason
to be embarrassed for being a believer. It’s the sinner who ought to be
Do what Jesus would do. Spread the good news of His Love. If you see your Christian brother or sister
getting discouraged, be a bright candle for Christ and help to rekindle that other candle which feels like it’s about to go out. Make somebody else
feel like a valuable human being, especially someone whose heart is broken by
rejection. You could make a lasting, loyal friend who will one day fellowship
with you in the Paradise of God. If you’re thankful for Jesus’ love,
just pass it on.