Modern conservatives have been shocked to find out that by thoughtlessly sowing their kids into government schools, they’ve reaped a harvest of godless statists. But there is a warning here for us. By and large, recent generations have abdicated their parental duty to educate their children due to disengaged & distant parenting. In a community committed to families providing a Christian education for their children, there’s a lurking danger to think that what happened to a generation of Government educated children can’t happen here.
If you mail in your parental duty to educate, discipline, and train up your children, you can expect to harvest what you’ve sown. You sow in disengaged parenting, you reap resentful & rebellious children. Auto-pilot parenting not only happens amongst the unbelieving, but it can also appear here in the church; and when it does the results are worse by far. You shouldn’t scorn unbelievers for reaping what they’ve sown, if you’re sowing the seeds in your own children for spiritual apathy, uncontrolled passions, and covenantal apostasy.
The blessing of Christian education isn’t an automatic blessing. It will descend into hypocrisy, powerlessness, and compromise the moment that Christian parents think that their duty to raise up their children to love and fear the Lord can be done by others. This temptation is present regardless of the educational choice you make.
We bemoan the fruits of government education, and it deserves all the scorn we can heap upon it. But you must not be deceived. You can’t raise faithful Christian children just by being in proximity to other Christians. Christian community in the form of Christian schools or homeschool co-ops are an aid to raising them, but it cannot replace firm and loving discipline from joyful fathers and mothers who faithfully teach their children to love the Lord their God.
As one Scottish pastor once put it, “gunpowder doesn’t grow immune to sparks.” Neither do we grow immune to compromise, temptation, and unfaithfulness. A long life is but a vapor, and that means the time which we as parents have to train up our children in faithfulness is even more of a fleeting wisp. We must take stock and evaluate the ways in which we’ve exported our duties as parents to others, expecting a good outcome simply by being near Christian community. More broadly, we as Christians have wagged our heads at the crumbling of western civilization around us, all while neglecting Scripture, entertaining secret sin, telling ourselves lies about our sin, and presuming that we deserve Your blessing. All of this should drive us to turn to God for forgiveness for this indifference. May He grant that we might be renewed by grace to follow hard after Him, even as His right hand upholds us.