2015 and Beyond
"What does God's model for a training school look like"? "How can it be achieved in the 21st century Australia"? These and similar questions have been on our minds, as we re-look at the opportunities, strengths, weaknesses and resources available at Eastward. I'll be the first to admit to not having all the answers.
Just this morning, I was reading Patriarchs and Prophets chapter 58 on the schools of the prophets. Here were some interesting excerpts that caught my attention:
"The schools of the prophets were founded by Samuel to serve as a barrier against the widespread corruption, to provide for the moral and spiritual welfare of the youth, and to promote the future prosperity of the nation by furnishing it with men qualified to act in the fear of God as leaders and counselors.
The pupils of these schools sustained themselves by their own labor in tilling the soil or in some mechanical employment.
The chief subjects of study in these schools were the law of God, with the instructions given to Moses, sacred history, sacred music, and poetry. The manner of instruction was far different from that in the theological schools of the present day, from which many students graduate with less real knowledge of God and religious truth than when they entered.
A spirit of devotion was cherished.
Music was made to serve a holy purpose, to lift the thoughts to that which is pure, noble, and elevating"
How wide the difference between those schools taught by the prophets of God and our modern institutions of learning! How few schools are to be found that are not governed by the maxims and customs of the world!" - Patriarchs and Prophets, Chapter 58
Do you think Australia needs a school of this nature? Absolutely! And while the way things were done in Bible times have drastcially changed compared to today, the principles, the problems and the needs, remain the same. Throughout the lapse of civilisations, a few things have never changed; human nature, and the God of love. God still longs to save people from sin. Schools of true-education are still powerful tools in God's hand to do that.
How can such a school be established? Well, thankfully we can look to God's counsels and wisdom to begin understanding those steps. The most important part for us to play is faithfulness. Faithful in using our abilities and resources in furthering the object of the school. Whether that be in industry, teaching or practical ministry. Also we need to study and obey God's instructions given to ancient Israel and given through the pen of Ellen White.
As we do this, I am confident that the providence of God will open the way to providing the right staff and students. It may not be in the manner or time we want, but it will be for the best.
So, 2015 and beyond? We remain wholly committed to this goal! By God's grace we will continue to learn, adapt and grow towards becoming the institution God wants this place to be.
Through struggles the butterfly is born, the pearl is perfected, and the character of man is developed.