A Time To Teach The Curriculum

A Time To Break Down

“…A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up…” Ecclesiastes 3:3

Once again, my favorite Bible passage is on my mind. It applies to pretty much everything in God’s great plan. Today, I noticed that two wonderful acts, heal and build up, are prefaced by their dark counterpart, kill and break down. But I don’t think God favors killing and destruction, He is recognizing that to establish a good scenario that is pleasing to Him, the bad must be destroyed, burned out, scraped away, ruthlessly dismissed. We have an evil presence that is fully incorporated in our public schools and is poisoning our youth. It is the anti-Scriptural indoctrination that has stealthily crept into the curriculum and policies of even our grade schools.

With the exception of new teachers, who are simply trying to keep their sanity as they learn how to be a teacher, we know the corruption is there. Someone from the outside might hear this and become outraged that we are not already standing against it. But it is complicated, right? Unless you are exceptionally blessed to be in a public school where many are bold about their faith, it can seem like you are alone in your desire to protect the young souls in your care. Even though public schools started out using Scripture as the foundation of their lessons, today a public admission of Christian belief can alienate you from other teachers and bring on false accusations about your character and level of care for your students. In some cases it can even result in a loss of employment. I get it. No one wants to be disliked and mocked, and losing income can be a frightening concept.

But I have a proposal. I propose that every Christian teacher decide right now, this very minute, to say no to all curriculum and policy in their school that is anti-Scriptural and dangerous for the souls of our youth. I think…no, I know this is not an impossible fight to win. We CAN have Christian values in our schools again. We CAN have God as the foundation for our students. It is not impossible! Would it make a difference in your level of confidence and bravery if you had an army of teachers, hundreds or even thousands, by your side? Imagine, crowds of Christian teachers standing firmly together arm in arm to stand up for the spiritual health of our precious students.

Well guess what…there IS an army of Christian teachers. There are so many out there right now who hate the compromises they have made and the things they have ignored in order to keep their jobs and not stand out as a non-conformist. I know because I have done it too. I am ashamed to say that there was a time when I put more value on my bank account and the acceptance of my peers than on the children learning from me every day, watching my every move, and believing what I silently and inadvertently endorsed. But I found out I wasn’t alone. When I finally realized what I was willing to trade for the purity of my students, I was humbled and grieved…and I was done. I was done turning away from red flags and finding ways to justify allowing corruption in my school. I was done perpetuating the cloud of evil and deception. That’s right…by not standing against it I had been endorsing corruption. But no more!

So how did I know I wasn’t alone? When I spoke up, others gained courage to speak up. One by one, they would approach me with the concerns they had been tortured with for years. And every time I speak out, more open up and admit they despise how trapped they feel, how afraid they have been to take action. But if every Christian teacher decided today to say NO! No more! Satan is not welcome here!, imagine how loud our battle cry would be and how quickly the enemy would rush to the shadows to cower. He’s already so afraid of us. Why else would he choose the youngest and most vulnerable of us for his dastardly plans. He knows he is no match for an army of teachers covered by Jesus blood.

We are stronger than most realize and we have a task that must not be delayed. There is no one else waiting to step up and do this for us. If we teachers do not stand up now, our students will be devoured by the enemy. The battle will only get harder the longer we wait to take action. We want Christian values restored in our schools, but first we have to break down a foundation of corruption that has been allowed and established. We cannot build a good school on top of an evil foundation. The way break it down is to refuse to allow even one more corrupt lesson or policy to be presented or followed. We have to get used to saying NO! We have to accept that we will be recipients of hate and anger. But as long as we are saying no with grace and love at all times, God will be faithful and carry us through it all. And we must be careful to say no without any destructive words toward those we are opposing. After all, “A soft answer turns away wrath, But a harsh word stirs up anger.” Proverbs 15:1 We are representing God in this battle, so do it right. We are not against people, but against the evil surrounding our young. We are their rescue plan and the children are counting on us to do what is right.

My dear, sweet, fellow teachers…you can do this. Your voice matters. Christ will give you strength. Trust God’s promises and start saying no to corruption in your school from here on out, without fail and without hesitation. If your job ends, it just means that God has other plans for you. Don’t worry, when you meet God in person some day, He won’t care if you managed to keep your salary and retirement fund. He will only care how you loved others. How much will you love your students today and every day from now on?

“Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, to which you were also called and have confessed the good confession in the presence of many witnesses.”

1 Timothy 6:12

The Curriculum

The Big Whisper

I read an article years ago about symbolism in our dreams and how to decode them. It was just some fun reading and I didn’t put much stock in it at the time. The article said that any snakes in the dream suggested someone in your life was lying to you or would lie to you in the near future. Your reflection could be an angel, but blue eyes could represent yourself. The symbol that stuck out the most to me was the lions. A dark lion represented Satan and a light lion represented God. I don’t know if there is actually any merit to that person’s analysis of dream symbols, but I do believe that God uses dreams as a way to whisper important messages to us. Look at the visions Joseph had in the Old Testament.

Joel 2:28 says, “And it shall come to pass afterward That I will pour out My Spirit on all flesh; your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions.” But the same message reappears in Acts 2:17. God is still using dreams in His plan, so we should certainly pay attention. Warning: God does not like false statements of dreams, so always pray for discernment when hearing one. Ever since my first memory, I have had many vivid dreams. Sometimes the dreams would come daily and would keep me deep in thought the next day, especially when I was a child. I always wanted desperately to make sense of them, but never could. I have written some of them down over the years at the advice of my husband. Lately, I have been hearing more and more testimonies of dear ones around me having dreams and visions. As much as I would like to have an amazing vision to share, I don’t want it unless God sends it.

Well, I finally had a possibly prophetic dream. It wasn’t lengthy and it wasn’t odd or complicated. But before I had the dream, I was invited by my student’s parent to a recent dinner with the Tulsa City Elders. First, let me just say, “Wow!” This group is committed to reclaiming the city for God and carefully guarding the “city gates” with “elders”. I didn’t know such a group existed, but they are great in number and growing in strength. My husband accompanied me to the dinner and we spent the evening praying for our city and meeting brave people from different careers who are standing for God at their work. Rhonda, the parent who invited me, was eager to introduce me to different people who had heard about the letter I wrote about the hidden corruption in our public schools. One of the people Rhonda introduced me to was a lady representing the Republican GOP in Tulsa. She asked for my information and was very interested in hearing more. I look forward to speaking and meeting with her in the near future.

The speakers that night called for courage and action. They pointed out the level of corruption in our country and its exponential growth. They encouraged and empowered us to stand up and fight in God’s army. You know that scene in Coming to America where Eddie Murphy is at the rally and suddenly stands up and yells, “I am so happy to be here!”? I honestly felt like that. Their words were convicting and powerful. I was sitting there becoming more full of purpose by the second. There was this sense of urgency welling up in me, and when they mentioned what is happening to our youth and the influence teachers can have over that, I almost cried. God was calling me loud and clear. One of the final images on their giant screen that night was a beautiful light golden lion, standing majestically and fearlessly. I stared at the image and was full of hope and bravery.

Back to my dream…That night, I dreamed of a blonde lion with a full mane and muscles rippling as he walked slowly and confidently forward across the land. Flanking each side of this lion were several lionesses as beautiful as the lion. They were walking confidently by his side. As I looked at their feet, I noticed that the lionesses were trampling the people in society who represent evil; the greedy, the liars, the murderers, the deceivers. All of these people were being crushed as if they were delicate twigs.

At the City Elders dinner, one speaker had declared that we have not just “awoken a sleeping giant”, but that Christ’s bride (the church) is set to conquer the enemy, and Christ will not be satisfied until the enemy is crushed beneath His bride’s feet. Powerful! Perhaps my dream was simply confirmation that what I heard was valid, but I am confident it was from God. I am also confident that it is time for the church to rise up and walk confidently beside God. It is much harder to trample the enemy sitting down. So rise up! Rise up and join the battle! We already know how it ends!!!

A Time To Teach The Curriculum

The Perfect Parent

I would like to meet the perfect parent. I would truly like to sit down to lunch with them, my treat. I would ask them how they did it…how they duped everyone into believing that there is any such person as the perfect parent. Please forgive my snarky tone, but I am constantly dismayed at the inference from society that the perfect parent is out there somewhere and if you are not striving for it, you are not worthy to be called parent. The pressure is almost unbearable for some and they drive themselves and their children crazy trying to attain that status. We have all seen that parent who seems to have actually gotten there…or at least they would have us believing it. I’m not talking about the parent who loses sleep because they have volunteered for everything at their child’s school, done all the research, attended all the sporting events with the personalized jersey, and carefully chosen a gift for each teacher. No, I am talking about the parent who belittles any other parent who doesn’t work as hard, do as much, or get seen as often as they do.

Grab onto something plastic because this next statement could be quite shocking. (Ahem, a little science humor.) The public school is attempting to become the picture of that perfect parent. What?!?! But Mrs. Cook, you are part of the public school? This is true. However, I am speaking of the worldly part of public school that is not representative of the heart of a teacher…the part driven by politics, bought by the highest bidder for curriculum, and determined to mold your children into a generation of lazy, entitled, God-hating toddlers. Okay, time to take a deep breath before I get carried away. Hhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh………………..Lord may my words be your wisdom and truth and nothing more.

So, what exactly do I mean by that statement? Until this year, when so much truth was revealed to me about the corruption in our public schools, I was honestly under the delusion that schools actually expected parents to take their role seriously. The truth is that more and more public schools are hiding their intentions and curriculum from parents. I know because I have tested it and found it to be true. When something is hidden by humans, you should always wonder why. I always tell my students and my own children that if you have to hide it, you are probably doing something bad. Why would you have to hide it if it is honorable and good? The answer is right there if you look a little deeper. Public schools hide things because they know the content is bad and parents would most likely object. The message this sends to parents is clear and effectively defeating…you are not a good enough parent, so we will just do it for you; we will decide what your student should learn, speak, and think and WE will raise them for you. How many parents receive that message and believe it? How many parents are simply giving up? Even one would be too many.

Let me tell you what God thinks about your parenting skills. Proverbs 1:8-9 says, “Hear, my son, your father’s instruction, and forsake not your mother’s teaching, for they are a graceful garland for your head and pendants for your neck.” It doesn’t say, “…but only if your parent is perfect”. God considers parental teachings to be the mark of a truly beautiful adult. But what happens when we allow someone else to take over our God-given authority over our children?

“Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” Proverbs 22:6 NKJV

I know this is a hard question to answer, but who is training up your child? That’s who your child will default to when they are grown.

You may be sitting there thinking, “Yeah, but she doesn’t understand what it’s like to be a single parent or disabled or uneducated…” I imagine there are many types of parents I can’t relate to. But, every parent has this in common…you were chosen by God to be your child’s parent. In God’s infinite wisdom, He chose you to trust with the upbringing of one of his beloved and precious souls. As if that isn’t enough of a reason to stand tall with confidence, God already knew what kind of person you would be when He chose you. You didn’t surprise Him with your mistakes and bad decisions (by the way, we all do those things often).

“For You formed my inward parts;
You covered me in my mother’s womb.
I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Marvelous are Your works,
And that my soul knows very well.

 My frame was not hidden from You,
When I was made in secret,
And skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.
Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed.
And in Your book they all were written,
The days fashioned for me,
When as yet there were none of them.” Psalm 139:13-16 NKJV

Just like God carefully crafted you, He carefully chose you to carry one of His great designs. YOU are enough! YOU are God’s perfect choice for a parent! And YOU have the highest authority over your child, not the schools or the government or society…YOU! I have met parents who discounted their abilities because they were doing it alone or because they had experienced some failure. Here is your truth, dear parents. If you strive to do better when mistakes are made, if you give your child your very best, if you put your child’s needs above your own, if you teach them to love God you are a good parent and you are just what God wants for your child. One of the best parents I have ever known (and one of my dearest friends) raised a beautiful, respectful, responsible, compassionate boy despite doing it all by herself. She will be the first to admit she made many mistakes and was not able to do half the things she wanted to do for him. But, she gave her very best and that’s exactly what God wanted from her. By the way, I don’t want to leave out one of my favorite categories of parents, adoptive and foster parents. I believe God chose them too. I have had the pleasure of teaching next to one adoptive mother of two little girls. She is not any more perfect than any other parent, but she is God’s perfect choice as their parent. When she talks to them, you can see the pure love pouring out and the girls know who will be there by their side, guiding them through life.

If you are sitting there right now thinking God made a mistake asking you to be a parent, STOP IT RIGHT NOW! God doesn’t make mistakes. You can do this! Do not give up. God will carry you if you accept His help. It will be difficult, messy, and even painful sometimes, but see it through. Your child is counting on you. Trust me, you don’t want to see who is waiting to steal that role from you. Hang on tight and don’t let go. I will leave you with this statement of Truth:

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Philippians 4:3 NKJV