A Glorious Day

Last Monday night we held an Informational Meeting for Evangel Classical School. Not everyone made it in time for my welcome and I thought I’d share my excitement here anyway.

ECS

Announcement day was a glorious day. It was glorious not because the school is big and every detail is set and every ideal has been made possible. It was a glorious day by faith. We are trusting that God is going to take our investment of dollars and minutes and multiply them by His grace into a community of students and teachers and families who see all of life with His Son as the center and Sustainer.

We are talking about worldview (or Weltanschauung as Abraham Kuyper called it). We are talking about opening a comprehensive worldview umbrella that covers all things made by Him. We are talking about framing minds with the eternal categories that shape our perspective for every discipline of study and for any given task. We are talking about education that loves to celebrate how everything fits together from Christ, through Christ, and to Christ. We are talking about people who will be ruined, so to speak, against any explanations or responsibilities that don’t provide meaningful, divine image-bearing joy.

It was a glorious day as we look forward to being worn out for sake of our kids, for our kids’ friends, for our kids’ kids many years from now. What else would be rather be exhausted by than helping to shape a gospel people, an evangel people, with confidence in God and courage to serve Him doing anything in any place in His world?

We have much to do. There are many things still to think about and work toward. But how we gather the tools to train our children may be as important as the tools themselves. We want them to think and that means that we can’t merely give them a book, we’ve got to think ourselves. We want them to work hard and that means that we can’t simply give them assignments, we’ve got to do the same. We want them to be glad, well-informed worshippers, so we must show them how. If we do, by God’s grace, we’ll have lives that are contagious and we will grow into a people who rejoice that:

There is not a square inch in the whole domain of our human existence over which Christ, who is Sovereign over all, does not cry: “Mine!” (Abraham Kuyper)

A Soft Heart Gathers No Plaque

Hardheartedness is a signal sin in the Bible. As Jonathan Edwards described,

Now by a hard heart is plainly meant an unaffected heart, or a heart that is not easy to be moved with virtuous affections, like a stone, insensible, stupid, unmoved, and hard to be impressed. (Religious Affections, 46)

A hard heart isn’t necessarily missing truth; gathering up more truth often makes a heart more stiff, not more soft. A hard heart is unteachable, unmovable, and often unashamed about it. Maybe worst of all, a hard heart is unaware of its condition–it has no sensitivity to its own hardness. Here is a short list of other dangers that come with hardheartedness.

First, hardheartedness prohibits love for God. There can be no warmth from a stone, no affections from a brick. Yet without love for God, there can be no relationship with Him. Hard hearts are dead cold.

Second, hardheartedness prevents teachability. There can be no interest from a calcified heart, no curiosity from old concrete. Yet without teachability, there can be no humility and no learning about Him, His requirements, or His way of salvation. Hard hearts are oblivious.

Finally, hardheartedness rejects God’s kindness and stores up wrath. The apostle Paul wrote about those who judge others but who disobey themselves. They don’t know that God’s kindness and patience and forbearance is meant to lead to repentance,

But because of your hard and impenitent (that is, without shame) heart you are storing up wrath for yourself on the day of wrath when God’s righteous judgment will be revealed. (Romans 2:5, ESV)

Though we gather to worship as Christians, as those gifted with new hearts, we diagnose some of the same sins clogging up the arteries of our hearts and threatening to smother our loves, to block our learning, to take our very lives. In order to keep our hearts from gathering plaque, we must confess our sins and seek His Spirit’s tenderizing work through the Word.