Yearly Archives: 2015


Lord Here and Now

Lately I have observed an increasing number of ways that our culture is ignoring, revising, or degrading the celebration of Christmas, and, for that matter, any specifically Christian public affirmation. It seems that our nation has accepted the position (and all the historical revisionism that comes with it) that the only official and publicly allowable religious affirmation in our nation’s public square is either skepticism or outright atheism. Cultural commentators far wiser than I have offered excellent documentation and analysis for this trend. In the midst of it, however, Regents Academy goes against the stream of officially disavowing Christmas in favor of a more acceptable, non-religious holiday or rejecting other public Christian affirmations in favor of a bland neutrality built on a fear of ever offending anyone’s sensibilities. Regents Academy is – and seeks to be, in every sense of the word – a Christian school. Jesus Christ is Lord – Lord of our school, its classes, teachers, curricula, policies, culture, and future.

I’ve been ruminating on a few of the consequences of the Lordship of Christ at our school:

• We will not be having any holiday parties or other holiday celebrations this December. We are having Christmas parties and Christmas celebrations, including Christmas trees, Christmas carols, Christmas presents, Christmas ornaments, Christmas decorations, Christmas sweaters, and Christmas joy. St. Nicholas is one of our heroes. We love celebrating Advent and want to make it one of the most special times of the year. Christmas is a holiday, but we celebrate our holiday because it is a “holy day” and we are followers of Jesus Christ the Holy Lord.

• We are a school, and we one of the main things we do is teach children to read. This we do because we believe that one of (if not the) primary purposes for learning to read is to be able to read the Bible. We put the immense gift of reading to use for a multitude of reasons, but central to them all is the gift of reading and hearing the Word of God. Without this gift, all the other gifts fall apart. We are people of the word because we are people of the Word, who became flesh and dwelt among us.

• We really do believe that prayer is powerful, and we are free to pray without ceasing at our school. This certainly means that we pray together in Morning Assembly each day, our teachers pray with their students at various times throughout the day, and we are each free to pray privately. And we are very happy we have this wonderful freedom. But our praying means that we believe that God is actually present – and welcome – in our halls and classrooms and ball fields. We look to Him and call on Him and rely on Him and implore His favor through prayer. Jesus Christ is not only Lord of all the earth and the far flung galaxies; He is Lord here and now, with us to enable us and guide us. We pray because we believe this.

• We believe that what we have is what we’ve been given. We didn’t make ourselves, and we didn’t give ourselves the riches that we possess and the liberties that we enjoy every day. God is the author of all the blessings that we receive and enjoy at all times. So while we’re not as thankful as we ought to be, we are thankful nonetheless. God is good, all the time, in good times and bad. And thankfulness to God fills the air at our school. In fact, one of our key goals is to cultivate thankfulness in ourselves, to model gratitude before our students, and then to train them to be thankful for what they are being given. We believe we would be failures if we produce smart kids who perform well on tests, go to impressive colleges on big scholarships, and attain success, but who are not humbly thankful.

The Child in the manger rules the world as King and Lord. Our school is His school, and I am so thankful for it.

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Thanksgiving Dress-Up Days

1st grade celebrated Thanksgiving with their Thanksgiving Feast while 5th grade had their yearly Colonial Day. Great costumes, great food, great teachers, and great students!

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Not My Fault

A good word from pastor and author Paul David Tripp:

It’s the one biblical truth that no one believes. In fact, I would go as far as saying that it’s a street-level theological heresy that we’re comfortable to live with as Christians.

“It’s not my fault.”

If you ask the little girl why she hit her brother, she won’t tell you it was because of the sin that’s in her heart. No, she’ll say, “He was bothering me.”

If you ask the teenager why he came in to work so late, he won’t willingly take responsibility. No, he’ll tell you a long story of how there was an accident on the freeway, then a long train he had to wait for, then a water main break that flooded the street he normally drives on.

If you ask the father why he’s so angry all the time, he won’t tell you it’s because of the selfishness and impatience in his heart. No, he’ll blame his kids, or his wife, or his boss; they just make him so angry.

If you ask the single woman why she’s so moody and discontent, she won’t say it’s because of the jealousy and envy that resides in her heart. She’ll point to all the ways that life has been hard and how her friends don’t deserve the good things in life they’ve received.

If you ask the old man why he’s so grumpy and nasty with his words, he won’t tell you it’s because of the bitterness that has captured his heart for decades. No, he’ll talk about all the times in his life when he didn’t get what he knew he deserved.

Now, of course, life in a fallen world is hard. There are terribly evil and seemingly unfair things that happen to us, in little moments and in big. But, our biggest problem in life does not exist outside of us; it exists within.

Jesus devastated this self-atoning perspective on human behavior in the Sermon on the Mount: “You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not murder’ […] But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment […] You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart.” (Matthew 5:21-22, 27-28)

Sin is a matter of the heart before it’s ever an issue of behavior. Sin is a matter of what lurks in us before it’s ever an issue of what happens to us. It’s the evil inside me that connects me to the evil outside me. So we must confess again today that we are our biggest and greatest problem in life.

You and I don’t so much need to be rescued from difficult people, tempting locations and stressful situations. No, we need to be rescued from ourselves. We can alter our circumstances, but we have no ability to purge ourselves from the destructive patterns of sin and selfishness that are in our hearts.

Today, even though life will be hard and people will press your buttons, don’t say, “It’s not my fault.” Instead, pray like David: “Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me.” (Psalm 51:10)

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New NHS Inductees

Congratulations to the sophomores inducted into the Regents Academy chapter of the National Honor Society:

(left to right) Lindley Bryant, Isaiah Bertke, Grace DeKerlegand, Jake Hill, and Avery Griner.

“The fear of the LORD is the instruction of wisdom, and before honor is humility” (Proverbs 15:33).

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Viking Day

The 8th graders celebrated reading Beowulf with Viking Day — costumes, a feast, and a blazing hearth (on the TV).

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Soccer Tournament Champs

Congratulations to the undefeated Regents Academy junior high soccer team, who won the 2015 Christian Schools Athletic Conference tournament on October 15. Pictured below is the team with head coach Michael Hebert and assistant coach Lance Vermillion. Great job!

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Congratulations, Kyla Alders

Congratulations to Regents Academy senior Kyla Alders. Kyla has been named a Commended Student in the 2014 National Merit Scholarship Program.

Today in morning assembly I had the pleasure of presenting Kyla with a Letter of Commendation from Regents Academy and from the National Merit Scholarship Corporation, which conducts the program.

About 34,000 Commended Students throughout the nation are being recognized for their exceptional academic promise. Commended Students placed among the top five percent of more than 1.5 million students who entered the 2014 competition and took the PSAT during their junior year.

For her teachers, her parents and family, and for all those who know Kyla, this honor is certainly no surprise.

Congratulations again, Kyla, and may God bless you!

Pictured below is Kyla with her parents, David and Nicole Alders.

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