This week I am beginning a series of brief posts explaining the Essential Elements of Classical, Christian, and Covenantal Education. What are the truths we assume as we teach your children week after week? What are the theological, philosophical, and educational ideas that inform and shape how we teach and learn at Veritas Academy?
To understand these “essential elements” you’ll need to hit pause on your frenzied schedule and think with me for a few minutes. Some of these elements are a bit abstract and may seem irrelevant or just “out there” but I promise that all are essential. While two schools can each teach math, literature, and writing and may appear similar in their approach on the surface, what lies hidden beneath their instructional methods can make all the difference in shaping a child’s worldview.
The first Essential Element of Classical, Christian, and Covenantal Education is Faith is at the Core of Human Identity. To explain this, we will break it into two parts.
1) What you believe about God has everything to do with what you believe
about everything else. Faith is not some little compartment of your mind where you tuck away religious assumptions. It is not just feelings and hopes you have during religious observances. Faith is far more comprehensive than we assume. Every thought you have is saturated with faith -some sort of faith in some sort of object. Faith is interwoven and interconnected with every thought you have and every decision you make. Faith is at the core of who you are. The object of your faith, be it the God of the Scriptures, the god of a false religion, the god of self, or godless god of materialism, shapes how you see the world, how you perceive reality, and how you raise your children.
2) Because God really, actually, truly exists (believe it or not!) and because this
True and Living God really, actually, truly made us in His image, we have an undeniable sense of the transcendent. We know at the very core of our being that there is creation and there is God, that there are things seen and things not seen, that there is our earthly reality which we can see and touch and there is a reality that transcends what we can see and touch. We –all humans, all people, everywhere, in all ages– possess a sense of the transcendent. We look up in the sky at night and know there is something beyond us and our little cluster of earthly concerns. We imagine and wonder. We long to love and be loved. We seek to know and understand. A sense of faith abides with us and within us. Faith is at the core of our existence. Faith is at the Core of Human Identity.
Much of contemporary education assumes that faith is only a compartment of private beliefs that are essentially irrelevant to our daily lives. It also fails to see the importance of transcendent, eternal realities and educates merely for the earthly, temporal concerns of jobs, career, and material success. At Veritas Academy we look at our students as children made in the image of God who live lives filled with faith. We aim to guide their faith so that its object is the true and living God of the Scriptures. We recognize transcendent realities and aim to cultivate their sense of realities beyond their material existence. We aim to educate them for more than jobs and earthly prosperity. We aim to nurture their souls, feed their faith, and strengthen their grasp of all those things that transcend the temporal and physical -of love, virtue, wisdom, eternity, and God’s glorious Kingdom.