A Letter to Wesleyan FamiliesContinuing our theme of Unity in Christ, with full transparency, Wesleyan has always operated as a conservative Christian institution and our standards and beliefs are publicly stated and taught. As a religious 501(c)3 corporation, we do not endorse particular candidates or parties, however, we are allowed and have often taken a stand to support specific legislation that is obviously in alignment with our values such as pro-life, pro-families, pro-religious liberties and expression, and pro-school-choice.
Over the years, our leadership has worked with care to honor the Lord as we seek to provide excellence in Christian education through our focus on academic distinction, servant leadership, Christian community and a solid biblical foundation. By God's grace, He has maintained our witness as a Christ-centered academy, created and united for His purposes. As we shared in last week's message, we have all been thrust into operating and responding to the calamities of COVID-19, cultural unrest, and political vitriol; as followers of Christ, we seek to remain obedient to Christ's calling to unity under His supremacy.
Preserving Our Unity
Below, the Apostle Paul shares his desire for the Ephesians to seek and protect their unity as followers of Jesus Christ …
"I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, entreat you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, showing forbearance to one another in love, being diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as also you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all who is over all and through all and in all."
- Ephesians 4:1-3
Wesleyan's leadership continuously works to encourage and protect the unity that God has graciously provided the Wesleyan community. Not surprisingly, this can be challenging when there are differences of opinions or beliefs, even amongst followers of Christ.
When faced with differences of opinion or beliefs within a body of Christ followers, our approach is very different from that of the world where differences in beliefs are often a matter of the heart—frequently rooted in pride or fear. That said, because we are living in a culture that functions far from respectful discourse and problem-solving, it's difficult not to be influenced by it.
Many of us are bombarded daily by disparaging dialogue via social media and a 24- hour news cycle. Much of this dialogue is instigated by today's media, public and private corporations, politicians, and even professional sports figures. But as followers of Jesus Christ, it is our personal and institutional responsibility to guard our words, messages, and hearts against those things that would divide us.
With this spirit of unity in mind, Wesleyan has always asked students to refrain from promoting political causes or candidates, waving banners or wearing potentially contentious statements that can unnecessarily create discord and be counterintuitive to the unity and positive family culture found at Wesleyan. By doing this, we hope to teach our students to value others above themselves as God's Word exhorts us in Philippians, and to encourage healthy discussions around age-appropriate questions without allowing the tone of the world to impact our thoughts or actions, as we noted with the questions in last week's letter.
In Proverbs 6:16-19, we are reminded that God said it is detestable for a man "who stirs up dissension among brothers." This important truth—and conviction—has served and guided our school's leadership, faculty, and student body for generations. And as challenging as it can be to enforce this value, our school, staff, parents, and students have enjoyed the full blessing of adhering to this truth.
The Unity of the Gospel
It is our desire as a school to align ourselves with the authority of God's Word in all things, and that the body of believers at Wesleyan Christian Academy will set our hearts on the unity of the Gospel as we partner together in the upbringing of your children. We are strengthened and encouraged knowing that in our mutual identification in Christ, there is great hope for our children as they begin to understand the beauty and power of Christian unity.
At a time when moral and social decline seems to overwhelm the church, Christians can often be vilified. While recognizing real pain and suffering in various communities, our desire is to navigate through these complex issues and teach our children how to love one another with the love of Christ, even when we disagree. We believe that learning these valuable theological lessons is vital to each child's walk of faith—and to our 50-year-strong mission to partner with parents to equip students to impact the world for Christ.
Unity as Wesleyan's 2020-2021 Spiritual Life Focus
In our weekly chapels over these past several weeks, we have expanded on God's command to Christian unity and have delved into the fundamental truths of the Christian faith. As part of this focus during weekly chapels, devotionals, and discussions, our students have reflected on the best ways to work through potentially divisive issues.
We are encouraged to see our students find answers to these difficult issues through God's Word. Although much of the world can quickly assign blame and create discord, we can find answers, purpose, and hope. In the coming weeks, during Middle and High School Chapels, we look forward to exploring more topics with Pastor Deon Parker, our Principals, local pastors and myself including:
- United with Christ
- United Against Division
- United under God's Authority
- United in Repentance
- United against Racism
- United Against Idolatry
- United by Grace
- United in Celebration
- United for God's Glory
- United to Worship
- United for Empathy
- United by God's Call
Additionally, Elementary Chapel themes will focus on values important to unity such as forgiveness, wisdom, thanksgiving, generosity, determination, contentment, honesty, obedience, and orderliness. We are thrilled to provide our students with a better understanding of who God is and His desire for us as the body of Christ.
A Word About The 2020 Election
As we approach the upcoming presidential and state elections, we know only one candidate or party can prevail in each office, and some people may be disappointed with the results. Thankfully, as believers, we can encourage one another to remain hopeful no matter the end result because God is sovereign no matter who wins (Job 42:2). We are hopeful also because we are a community built around unity, humility, love, service, and the centrality of the Gospel message. This will not change, no matter who wins.
Wesleyan, we are confident that together we can help lead the way to encourage and witness to a hurting and lost world who needs to know the same hope of eternity that we do.
Serving our families, for His Glory,
Dr. Rob Brown,
Head of School