We are living in both troubling and exciting times.  With recent events in our nation, I have discovered that many people are angry, afraid and feel like something needs to change.  On both sides people are afraid of tyranny and the loss of freedom. On one side we have people who are concerned that the liberal left is promoting a Marxist agenda that will silence all opposing voices and lead to a loss of freedom and will destroy the Republic. On the other side people believe Trump is a tyrant who knows that he lost the election and is manipulating people to keep in power and will destroy the Republic.  It seems to me that the immediate danger to our Republic is the growing root of bitterness that is destroying brotherly love and leading to a civil war rather than civil dialogue.  Forget the “elites” and the “fringe,” most people are committed to their positions because they want to be good, loving and to help people.  Regardless of people’s perspectives, it seems that God has broken the apathy and complacency of almost all Americans.  I believe this creates an incredible opportunity for the church to shine like a light, provide godly leadership and bring in a harvest if we will fix our eyes on Jesus and be a people of hope and faith.

One of the problems we are facing is insecurity.  In a cold world governed by chance where life is ultimately meaningless, there is no genuine security.  Thankfully that world does not exist, but instead we were created by God with purpose and significance.  Indeed, all of history is being guided by His sovereignty to deliver us from the power of sin and death through the gospel into His kingdom where there will one day be no more pain, sorrow, or death.  In addition, when we study history, we see that no matter what people have faced on earth, God’s grace and presence has always been with His people and many times the church has overcome the very wrath of hell itself and brough light and liberty to the world. Once we rest in that truth, we are no longer afraid of what the future may bring.  That is why my prayer for our community is: “Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit” (Romans 15:13, NKJV).

When the world sees our faith, hope, love, and the security we have in Christ we will be a light in the midst of a world in turmoil.  Yet, we also need to have a strategy to heal the nation and to pass on the blessings of Christ to our children and grandchildren.  Before I go into that strategy, I will mention that one of the messages of the book of judges is that when the Israelites worshipped Canaanite gods, God handed them over to suffer under Canaanite culture.  When they cried to God, He delivered them.  The principle is that worship precedes cultural change.  Change who we worship, and we will eventually change our culture.  That is why, after God delivered Israel from the oppression of Egypt, He gave them His law.  The purpose was to preserve and pass on true liberty to future generations.  The strategy is revealed in Deuteronomy:

“Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one! You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. “And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates” (Deuteronomy 6:4–9, NKJV).

The first part of the strategy has to do with us, our love and worship of Christ.  The second part is to teach our children to walk in the fear of the Lord. While that includes the statutes and decrees of God, the first thing He tells us to do is to tell them about the mighty saving deeds of God in history and by implication, those we have personally experienced.  Remembering God’s saving deeds causes us to trust God even when it seems like the world is falling apart.  Throughout scripture, when people either trusted or cried out to God, the Lord worked mighty deliverances that defied natural human strategy.  The challenge of faith is the same today, do we really believe God can bring salvation in the midst of a seemingly impossible situation?  Whenever people believe God and turn to Him with their whole heart, they find He is mighty to save.  God can save individuals from fear, anger, frustration, and bitterness in our hearts and He can save our nation as well if we turn back to Him and follow His strategy for cultural transformation through the gospel.

With all that in mind, at Fortis Academy we are committed to teaching our children the fear of the Lord and to trust in Christ with their whole hearts.  While I believe the majority of people who are concerned about our society want to help people, the problem is that there are few who truly look to the wisdom of God revealed in scripture to structure society to be a blessing.  Good intentions to save the world that are contrary to Christ and His word create hell rather than heaven on earth. Human utopian dreams always turn into nightmares. Not only do we need the right ethics and structures for society, we need the right people to implement them.  There are few who have walked with God through the refining fire so that they have grown mature in Christ and are able to do what is right in the midst of pressure and temptation.  One of the goals of Fortis Academy and of classical Christian education is to train people in the wisdom of God and to develop the character and virtue necessary to lead people and nations into the purposes of Christ.   I am grateful to be a part of an educational community that is committed to a strategy to heal the nations through investing in the next generation.