Tuesday, February 28, 2017
Schools of Doubt. . .
Children who should be looking with awe and wonder at the world around them are taught to look inside and wonder about sexual feelings and identity they know nothing about. They are led like lambs to the slaughter to be sacrificed on the high altar of unproven ideas and suspect truth. So instead of encouraging children to be inquisitive or even allowing them to be silly, they are urged to ponder the adult ideas that have captured the wandering minds of a people captive to their fickle feelings about desire and happiness and fulfillment. It is the ultimate betrayal of their youth by those who think they know better.
It is no different when they graduate and some well meaning speaker encourages them to trust nothing but their feelings and to let nothing stand in the way of their dreams. They have little knowledge of history and have learned only that their truth is subjective and transitory. Then they head to institutions of higher learning filled with instructors who value novelty above all. If it is not new, it cannot be true and truth is an antiquated category anyway. They are urged again to trust feelings more than anything else and to be suspicious of anyone (except those who mouth the party line).
If some of them end up thinking of religion, it will not take long before the same skepticism about authority and truth will raise questions about whether the Jesus of creed and confession is the Jesus of Scripture or the Jesus of history -- as if anyone could ever know any Jesus very well. Absent the facts of creation, sin, redemption, and resurrection, they will learn that it is all really about spirituality (one that is present in bits and pieces in every religion) and a morality built upon the shifting sands of what is right right now.
Though the Lutheran elementary school is under threat from shrinking finances and a pool of students, it is needed now more than ever. Though the Lutheran high school is becoming an endangered species, it is needed now more than ever. Though the Lutheran university faces enemies all around and skyrocketing costs that make it harder than ever to justify for church and student, it is needed now more than ever. And part of that reason is that parents are either struggling with or have given up on trying to teach the faith to their children to counter the secularization and uncertainty fed to their children by educational institutions and the media alike. I applaud those parents who believe that the best they can give their children is to raise them in the faith but I know the pressures they are under and the factors against them. Now more than ever the Lutheran school is needed to support and encourage the noble task.