Dear Heritage parents,
What an incredible day at Heritage! Our two campuses were filled with captivating and compelling events and we celebrated the hard work of the students, faculty, and staff. Thank you grandparents for coming out to support your grandchildren. Many of you asked to share in writing my remarks from Grandparents Day this morning:
Welcome to Heritage Preparatory School’s Grandparents Day 2023. We are so excited to have you here with us this morning to celebrate the incredibly hard work all of our lower school students have put in over the last few weeks in preparation for your arrival. I know they are excited to be able to perform for you this morning. Thank you for making the effort to honor that hard work. I know you will be impressed and encouraged by what you see and hear this morning. We are honored to have you with us and hope you walk away encouraged to know your grandchildren are being prepared for the life God has called them to.
When I first began in education some 28 years ago, I always admired the amount of effort and investment you – grandparents – make in the lives of your children and grandchildren. Today, I stand before you as a fellow grandparent with a much more acute understanding of that effort and investment. And probably a little of the frustration. I’m confident many of you can relate to a common statement my wife and I make about our daughter and son-in-law and how they are raising their children. Excuse me, I mean OUR grandchildren:
“If we could have them for a week, we could get this straightened out!”
To be fair, our children are raising our grandchildren in a very different world today. It would be easy to give into fear and spend our time worrying about how they are going to be able to resist the temptations and the siren calls of a culture and society that is moving further and further away from the Gospel. It’s not that we have been a Gospel-centered culture in a long, long time, but the animus towards Christianity and a transcendent Truth has grown exponentially over the past decade. Make no mistake that we are engaged in a battle for the souls of our children, your grandchildren.
There was a TV show back in the ’60s called “Lost in Space.” I’m sure many of you either remember the show itself or caught the reruns. I have vague memories of the actual show, but I remember with clarity one of the characters: the Robot. The Robot – that was his name, by the way (really creative!) – had superhuman strength and all of this futuristic weaponry and gadgetry. His main job was to protect the youngest member of the crew, Will Robinson. Robot had two catchphrases that I still use today at times, which are usually met with a blank stare from my kids:
“It does not compute.”
“Danger, Will Robinson!” (cue the arms flailing around!)
I cannot think of two more appropriate phrases to be used in response to most of what is happening in our world today.
Gender dysphoria, sexual confusion, preferred pronouns, victim mentality, elevation of individual feelings…the list is endless. Everywhere you turn there is another attempt to marginalize God and elevate self. And I find myself saying,
“It does not compute.”
Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; who put darkness for light, and light for darkness; who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter! (Isaiah 5:20)
Is that not apropos? Have we not, as Paul states in Romans, exchanged the incorruptible for the corruptible? And we don’t do it out of ignorance. This is no innocent mistake. No, he makes it very clear that this is on us:
For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse. (Romans 1:20)
“It does not compute.”
All of this stuff that’s going on around us doesn’t square with this: God’s Word. It makes me want to stand up and shout from the rooftops:
“Danger, Will Robinson!”
We live in a confused world. But please hear me when I say this, Heritage Preparatory School is not confused. We are not confused with who we are, and we’re not confused about Who we serve.
Let your eyes look straight ahead, and your eyelids look right before you. Ponder the path of your feet, and let your ways be established. Do not turn to the right or the left; remove your foot from evil. (Proverbs 4:25-27)
We stand firm on the foundation of the revealed Word of God. We do not turn to the right or to the left. In this book, we find the Truth that transcends time and generations and philosophies and cultural movements and the ideas and feeble attempts of man to usurp his God.
We have a destination to which we are heading. There is no equivocation, no doubting, and no relenting. We are going to link arms with your children, with you, and with each other to raise up a generation who…
Think with Excellence
Believe with Confidence
Live with Character
For 25 years, God has upheld this school through His faithfulness, provision, and timing. For 25 years, His hand has guided this school. There have been tough times; some really tough times. There were times when we didn’t know if we would be able to continue; times when we didn’t know what to do and had to simply fall to our knees and beg Him to show us, to somehow provide a way. And we got to see God move in incredible ways.
We look forward to seeing what He will do over the next 25 years with this little school in the heart of Atlanta that seeks to be obedient to His calling and to be light and salt to this city.
Now is not the time to retreat from the world. We need you, grandparents, more than ever. To provide encouragement, support, and perspective. The battle is too fierce, it is too important, and the stakes are too high. Our children and our grandchildren need us.
As Joshua prepared to take the nation of Israel across the Jordan into the promised land, he gave these words:
Only be strong and very courageous, that you may observe to do according to all the law which Moses My servant commanded you; do not turn from it to the right hand or to the left, that you may prosper wherever you go. (Joshua 1:7)
It will take strength and it will take courage to step into this world and engage it in a winsome way that leads others to discover Truth.
Robot had it right.
The world today does not compute and there is danger everywhere.
But in the midst of all the confusion, there is hope. I pray you walk away today with hope, knowing that your grandchildren are not being taught that truth is dependent upon them discovering it within themselves, but that Truth is revealed to them by a loving Father, who sent His Son to live a life we could not live, to die a death we would not die, and to raise again to provide a salvation we do not deserve.
And that Truth is Jesus Christ.
Matthew H. Skinner