Over the last few years, I have in different ways been communicating this message to parents and students alike. I have seen these truths come alive in many of their experiences, both positively (when adhered) and negatively (when neglected). They are, I believe, some key ingredients to not only being successful in school, but also a means to continue to grow in your faith in Jesus Christ through your school career, whatever level it may be. Most are in a place of gratitude at this time of year, for being finished school. The reality is that many students and parents alike are already preparing for the next semester, next school year, next school environment. And most importantly, as parents who have a faith in Jesus Christ, we're hoping and praying for more than just a good education. The good news is that even as students we can demonstrate leadership:
1. Honour the Lord
a. Daniel 1:2; 2:28 – Daniel understood God was always in control, even when things were difficult.
b. Daniel 1:8; 3:16-18; 6:20-22 – they had resolved or determined their limits and had a willingness to suffer for making God honouring choices.
2. Honour your parents - Daniel and his friends, made choices of integrity based on how they were prepared (by their family) to enter their new challenges.
a. Deuteronomy 6:1-7 – parents are to teach their children about living faithfully.
b. Exodus 20:12; Eph. 6:1 – the path of blessing is through honour
3. Respect your teachers
a. Daniel 1:12-14 – didn’t complain, but respected the role of those in authority, appealed to their position of authority and was willing to accept the decisions of those in authority.
b. Daniel 6:22 – never complained against he king or undermined the position of the king.
4. Find faith-filled friends
a. Daniel 2:17-18 – pray, support and encouragement of like minded friends. Add to that the importance of participating and serving with a church family; not just attending a church service (Eph. 4:11-16). Allow yourself to be known in a community of faith; get to know others who are growing in their faith in Jesus.
b. Psalm 1; Proverbs 13:20; 1 Corinthians 15:33 – the company you keep influences your thoughts and actions
5. Work hard - when school is in, being a student is your number one priority; apply yourself to it wholeheartedly. Get involved in, in-school activities. Bring your grace-filled perspective to those activities.
a. Daniel 1:4-5, 17 – applied themselves to learning – even stuff that they knew was different or counter to their biblical perspective; the Lord added to their efforts.
b. Colossians 3:17 – in everything, do it all in the name of the Lord.
a. Exodus 20:8 – break from your regular routine; invest in that which replenishes your energy on a daily and weekly basis. The rest is blessed. The work is blessed through the rest.
What were some other keys to developing your faith as a student?