Role Modeling for Our Role Models

A reflection by Dr. Christi Williams, Logic School Humanities teacher

For this blog post, I would like to simply share an experience I had this past year that was one of the countless examples to me of what a Christian classical education can and should be. I was reminded of the role parents and teachers have in motivating their children and students to pursue wisdom for the right reasons, in the right way, with the right kind of hearts, and how it is crucial that our children have role-models – older human beings who are daily striving in humility and passion to truly embody all that we teach, in whom love of Christ is central, and who can help us take on this arduous and delightful task of raising and educating our children.

This past year I taught the oldest students currently at Trinity, the seventh graders. Early this spring, the head of our school – a man all the students deeply love and respect (he reads aloud to them at lunch, knows and prays for them all, doesn’t hesitate to express compassion for them individually) – came into my homeroom and sat down to have a short chat with the students. He told them, with warmth, conviction, and earnestness, that he prays for them regularly by name, that as the oldest kids at the school, they have a great privilege and responsibility to be models of Christ. God has implicitly given them the beautiful task, he said, of becoming the kind of human beings all the other students can look up to.

And he said that, more than anything else he could want for them at Trinity, he wants them to experience learning as an act of worship to God – not for self, grades, achievement, temporal recognition, or as a stair-step to “success.” All these things, he added, will actually become great temptations, if they are not already. And he humbly admitted that he struggles with these things, even though he loves learning, loves the Lord, and wants to be in school his whole life.

He told them that if education is not done as an act of worship and for Christ, with purity of heart, it is meaningless (and could even do great harm). Then he prayed for them. And they hung on every word.

This, I believe, is the kind of spirit that can light fires in our children’s and students’ hearts, set them journeying in their pursuit of wisdom, especially and only insofar as it is bathed in humility, supported by prayer, delighted in with genuine joy, and consecrated to Christ, for His glory.