It can be really frustrating living in the Bible Belt. There is no shortage of churches; there’s practically one on every street corner. Just not one you would want to attend– that is, if you’re looking for balanced Christianity. It seems it’s always a choice of either/or. You can have a very conservative church that believes in the power of the Holy Spirit, evangelism, personal relationship with Christ, and the inerrancy and literal interpretation of Scripture; or a very liberal church that cares for the poor, stands for justice and peace, encourages thought but has also become unmoored from the Bible. Seems as Christians we either hate the world so much we build high walls to keep it out, or we love it so much that we become too much like it. Jesus loved the world so much he laid down his life for it. For God so loved the world… He also called his disciples to be in the world but not of the world. Do not love the world or the things in the world…
Searching for a church to attend has been discouraging enough. Now we are looking for a new school for our daughter. Again it’s a choice of either/or. You can have a secular school that is very strong academically but offers no spiritual nurture, or a Christian school that teaches God’s Word but little else. Frankly, I don’t want my child taught that science is of the devil and evolution a lie, that the earth is only six thousand years old and cavemen rode on the backs of dinosaurs.
Yes, spiritual nurture is primarily the responsibility of parents, but in the absence of a strong children’s program at the church we attend, our daughter needs at least a few Christian friends. She currently attends a secular school with a high academic rating. She is developing beautifully from an intellectual standpoint. Yet the schoolmates who are influencing her now are not Christian, and she is bringing home behaviors that do not belong in our home. Of course, there is always homeschooling, but neither my wife nor I feel qualified to teach pre-K.
So it comes down to this: Do I want to expand my child’s mind or her spirit? What kind of beschissen choice is that? I want to teach her to be a thinking Christian. In the end it will probably be easier to help her to develop a biblical Weltbild at home, rather than having to undo much of what she would be taught in a fundamentalist Christian environment.