Education today is all about marketing the latest ideologies to your children, like a constant stream of infomercials. You, however, can take the very things intended to subvert and use them to train your child in the way they should go. Be alert, for your enemy is looking for whom he can devour (1 Peter 5:8).
My son came home from kinder holding a glitter and water mixture in a jar. He held it reverently and took it everywhere as he told me it would help him feel peaceful when he is upset. I asked how it would do this. Such was the influence of his teachers that it took days of gentle persuasion to remind him that we already have Jesus to go to and Jesus can actually do something to help us. We eventually got to the idea that perhaps we need to say sorry to God for turning to our glitter jar instead of Him, the King of the universe. And this is a child who loves God and loves to talk to Him.
But the battle for minds and souls is unremitting.
With our teens, we have to be engaged in the culture wars or we will lose them. The enemy of their souls does not want them to know the truth about anything and our education system keeps them in ignorance on purpose. Take the issue of abortion. If you have teens, do they know it is murder and indeed torture? Have they seen The Procedure or its equivalent, watched Lifemark or attended a March for the Babies event to hear the other perspectives on this issue?
Have you read your child’s English books? You need to. (Being in a Christian school serves as no safeguard from our experience – nor do Christian schools deconstruct the texts from a Christian worldview. Even those schools that can articulate the creation-fall-redemption paradigm for worldview seem unable to apply it and very often push the same WOKE agenda that’s in secular schools).
I write a letter to my children for each of their books discussing the worldview – whether it is the Marxist deliberate tearing down of each institution or authority figure, the idea that romantic love conquers all and justifies every sin, the normalising of every kind of perverted sex, the anti-humanism (which can be as subtle as describing every character in terms of their bottom or thighs – yes, The Dressmaker) or the spiritism (usually indigenous – yes, Tim Winton).
We talk about the power of words and images and, with their permission, I black out the worst elements of the sex scenes as we discuss holding onto moral purity. (And for the naysayers who ask why I unfairly target sex – that’s because that is what most of these books feature).
We leave the children in our churches defenceless so often. There are teens in our congregations who are the only ones of 2-3 students in their class who don’t identify as LGBTQI+. (Full disclosure: All the examples here are real instances and I have left out some of the more extreme.). Have you prepared your child for what to do if they are required to stand and applaud people for coming out? Do they know that they have your permission and instruction to walk out when they are being taught racist critical race theory or how to use a sex toy? The silence in our churches on so many of these things leaves the lambs without a shepherd.
And we must not leave it at just the ‘Christian’ issues. We have to teach critical thinking at every turn. If your child fully believes that the greatest threat to humanity is Climate Change, that virtue consists in being an activist in the cause and that ‘climate deniers’ are worse than unbelievers – then you have lost them just as surely as if they denied Christ. Why? Because that is a false religion. The greatest threat to humanity is God, the world will end when he returns, and no one is righteous not one.
We are all homeschoolers now so be upfront with your kids that they are children of royalty and their training has to be more challenging to be prepared for that career. Following Christ is not for the cowardly (Rev. 21:8) or lazy (Heb 6: 11). Education is the goal and not ticking the boxes for school assignments. We memorise Scripture together. For every essay, we challenge them to find the other point of view and to really understand it before raising objections. This is no longer part of mainstream education because truth itself is no longer valued. And if all this gets too time-consuming, ditch the school and homeschool so they can get an education.
Propaganda has been atomised and integrated into every subject so that it is pervasive and unavoidable. In a post-Christian world where truth is regularly sacrificed on the altar of the latest ‘good cause,’ we have to help our children identify and deconstruct the hidden messaging. You are the God-provided defender to prevent the Trojan horses from capturing the city.