Our mission statement says a lot about our school. It is a statement that was carefully crafted and each word has a wealth of meaning. There are five words or phrases on which I would like to expand, to give a clearer picture of what we want to do here at Bracken Christian School.
The first word is assist. Bracken Christian School is here to assist, not replace, the parents. God has given each of you as parents the responsibility to educate your child. It is not the school's responsibility, it's yours. God holds you accountable for this most serious responsibility. Granted, Bracken will provide you with a great deal of support, but it is still your responsibility. This does not absolve us of our responsibility. We are still accountable for the job we do and how we do it. We have been given an awesome privilege to come along side you and assist you and we take that privilege very seriously. But your child was given to you, not to Bracken. Practically, this means that you must get involved in your child's education. Checking homework, assisting with projects, reading with your child, making sure they get enough rest, making sure they have a healthy diet, getting them here on time, communicating with them and their teachers are all expected of our parents here at Bracken.
The next word that stands out in our mission statement is Christian. Bracken Christian School is not a reform school. We do not exist to take problem children in and try to reform them. While this is certainly a worthwhile purpose for some schools, it is not the purpose of Bracken. Also, we accept students into our school based on a profession of faith from at least one parent. Bracken Christian School does not exist to evangelize children primarily. There are many schools out there whose sole purpose is to accept the unsaved child and introduce them to Jesus Christ. We applaud and support those schools in their mission. However, that is not why we exist. We are what is called a covenant school. We covenant with Christian families to provide an environment where they can bring their children and have them educated in a manner consistent with their beliefs.
Next, Bracken Christian School will provide an excellent education. When a student graduates from Bracken Christian School, they will be able to attend the college of their choice provided they have put forth the effort necessary to learn. Our academics are structured to provide a well-rounded education for each student. Students will be challenged to think critically and assess the events that surround them through the lens of Scripture. But more about that in a moment. Our graduates attend a diverse group of universities and colleges and have proven capable of the challenge. Are we going to provide the crème de la crème of academics? No. Obviously, we are not equipped to provide the best education money can buy. There are schools that may have a stronger academic program. However, you have our assurance that when your child graduates from Bracken Christian School, they will be prepared to succeed in college and in life.
Seeing events of life through the lens of Scripture is called a biblical worldview. This is the fulcrum upon which all of our programs hinge. Without a thorough understanding of what God thinks about certain issues, we are left to interpret the events of life based on how we feel, a sorely inadequate foundation from which to work. A biblical worldview enables a person to set an anchor in life. We are no longer tossed here and there by every contemporary cultural wind. We stand on a rock while the remainder of the world continues to sink in the sand of relativism. We are not arrogant when we say that we have the truth. We state that fact with all humility, knowing that it is not our intellect that has brought us to the truth, but the grace of a holy God. The Bible stands as our lighthouse, constantly providing a reference point and direction for our lives. Teaching our students to think biblically and assess life biblically is of primary importance. Without that mindset, the mind of Christ, a student will be lost in a world that is increasingly hostile to the things of God.
What is the end result? What do we want our graduates to be? That is the final phrase in our mission statement. Our desire is to produce a student that will impact their culture for Christ. Our world desperately needs it. If we have students graduate from Bracken Christian School with a head full of knowledge yet lack the ability to integrate that knowledge into their everyday lives through the empowerment of the Holy Spirit, we have failed. God does not leave us here on earth to be spectators. He desires for us to serve our brothers and sisters in love, with humility, just as Christ has served us. There has to be a practical outworking of our faith in Christ. Faith without works is dead (James 2:17). We desire more than anything else...more than high test scores, more than championship trophies, more than happy children, to train young men and women to be committed followers of Jesus Christ. Christ demands nothing less.
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