Dec 16 2012
Good News: God is Still Allowed in Public Schools

A listener asked me what I thought of the thought expressed on this t-shirt.

So here goes: Putting it in delicate terms... it's hogwash. 

God isn't "allowed" anywhere. He doesn't need permission. He doesn't need a hall pass from a teacher, and He doesn't need to report to the office on the way in.

We didn't "kick God out" of our public school system. We don't have that kind of power, unless you're such a big fan of the Supreme Court that you think God must first parse a majority decision to determine where He can go.

When Jesus said, "Lo, I am with you always," he didn't leave it subject to court review by our robed lawyers.

Do I think the courts have it right, that they've interpreted the constitution fairly, to allow students religious expression?  No way. They've been all over the map. Incoherent, even. They've overstepped their bounds, in restricting free citizens the very first freedom mentioned in Bill of Rights. That's my opinion.

But they did not kick God out of schools, because... they can't. And God doesn't take on the role of dispassionate observer to prove a point for you.

So don't tell us otherwise. And, because words matter, don't give kids the impression that God waits, sadly, outside, waiting for the final bell, when they can rejoin Him.

God loves little children, and He does not hear their cries from without, and then refuse to be with them. He loves teachers, too, who often feel overwhelmed at their jobs, and thousands call on Him daily. He does not offer a wistful, "I wish I could go in, but..." 

It's true: He does not promise an absence of suffering. In fact, he promises just the opposite. 

But lo, students and teachers, he is with you, always. And when God says He draws near to the broken-hearted, there's no asterisk that says, "Except during homeroom, pending an appeal." When He draws close, He doesn't consult the reigning opinion of the Sante Fe ISD v. Doe decision for boundaries.

Turns out, the Bible doesn't talk about our courts much. It does, however, make it clear that evil precedes the McCollum case of 1948. In fact, it dates back thousands of years, and Jesus' own birth into our world was greeted with unspeakable evil, an infanticide on an unimaginable scale, with a single purpose: Disallowing God.

But you know what? The authorities didn't get to determine where God goes, and where He is. They never do.

There's nothing new about evil. This is our world, as it was, as it is, but not how it shall ever be.

"In this world, you will have trouble," Jesus tells us. "But take heart! I have overcome the world."

Good news, kids! And good news, teachers!

God is in your school. He has not left the building.

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Comments (84) -

12/16/2012 4:09:52 PM
Brendt Waters United States
Brendt Waters
Bravo! Bravo! Author! Author!

(Oh, never mind on that second part.)
12/16/2012 4:12:55 PM
shannon United States
shannon
Thanks for this awesome reminder that God has the ultimate victory.  while we can' t understand the reason for this tragedy we know it can be summarized as evil.  God has defeated evil and He can bring peace. God has not left us or our schools we are the ones turning from Him.
12/16/2012 4:16:31 PM
Cheryl Trusty United States
Cheryl Trusty
I never thought of it that way, before. Thank you, Brant, for this insight.
12/16/2012 4:18:48 PM
melissa carrasco United States
melissa carrasco
Thank you!
12/16/2012 4:37:11 PM
Joy Tomlinson United States
Joy Tomlinson
Hey Brant, that's true of what you wrote, God wasn't kicked out of schools He's always with us. I just feel that it's harder for the students to talk about God in the classroom; course, it depends on the teacher too, and the type of classroom. I do know it's getting closer and closer to Jesus coming soon!
12/16/2012 4:47:01 PM
JacAnn United States
JacAnn
AMEN!!!
12/16/2012 4:47:25 PM
Jennifer United States
Jennifer
Thanks, Brant. You always make me smile, or make me feel better. Even though this is about schools, I converted it into something relevant to me (I am homeschooled, so God is always in my school) Just this morning, I was like, "I need some Brant encouragement." Thanks. I think I will forward this to a friend who goes to a public school. Oh, and, YOU ARE AWESOME! (Sherri is too.)
12/16/2012 4:52:03 PM
Terry United States
Terry
I totally agree! My classroom is covered in prayer and I hope I share His light every single day. There are times I wish I could openly discuss Him, and wish I could pray with my class together every day. But I am thankful for our God who is so big, so holy, so mighty....that there will never be anyone or anything that will keep Him from me ANYWHERE I go.
12/16/2012 5:17:05 PM
Crystal United States
Crystal
I can see both sides of this coin...BUT what I do understand is that ONE person with Jesus is the majority. Just one child walking into a public school with Jesus in their hearts IS the majority and can absolutely change the atmosphere within that school. Just one child sharing the love and light of Christ can change that school...revival could take place...God would be there...IN SPITE of the 'rules'. ~
12/16/2012 5:18:44 PM
JoAnn Stanley United States
JoAnn Stanley
Amen! Thank you for the reminder.
12/16/2012 5:32:05 PM
Julie Chandler Paddock United States
Julie Chandler Paddock
Right, your right. I saw that same picture and while I agreed with it something just did not sit well with me. When I read your blog I realized it was the word "allowed"! Thanks for putting into words just the thoughts I was looking for. Our God is bigger than anything we can think, dream, or imagine, and I am so thankful He is!!
12/16/2012 5:56:20 PM
Amy Philipsen United States
Amy Philipsen
My response when I saw it on FB, was something along the lines of, "That's a lame-ass, embarrassingly self-righteous comment" And then, of course, I felt all smug due to my much greater intellect and theological correctness... Your response is much more mature - good job.
12/16/2012 6:14:38 PM
Derrick United States
Derrick
Accidentally rated three instead of 5 Frown
12/16/2012 6:16:39 PM
Tabby Haefke United States
Tabby Haefke
That's really good! But God does respect our what we call wishes. I mean god doesn't force himself on anybody. When someone tells god go away he doesn't leave, but he may let us have our season of what we want we get whether we really like it in the end. He gave us choice. But when two or three are gathered in his name he's there. And when there is one person calling out to him no one can stop God from coming. I guess I'm putting out there God gave us choices and as a nation we have unfortunately seemed to say we run the world not you God. I'm a Christian and I know there are thousands upon thousands of us, which is awesome! lol But didn't God give the Israelites enough meat to eat and enough to come out of their noses when they wanted it because they were ungrateful for the manna? As Christians we know the power of God and no one can stop him from going anywhere but our nation is allowing and choosing things that are trying to kick God out. We simply need to pray for our nation and spread his love!
12/16/2012 6:25:03 PM
Marc United States
Marc
Brant, All I have to say is that is why you are my favorite person to hear on the radio.  You take things and make them real.  You make us look at things in a whole know light.  I think you took the point of God and make it real.  Thank you for making it real and not being afraid to back down.  I appreciate what you have to say.  Thank you.
12/16/2012 6:37:44 PM
Chris Kimbler United States
Chris Kimbler
Well written with great, thoughtful points. Thank you.
12/16/2012 6:42:36 PM
Cara United States
Cara
Very well said, Brant! And I believe you still have that man point!
12/16/2012 6:54:20 PM
Becky R United States
Becky R
I'm glad I'm not the only person who thought that shirt/image was hogwash.  I just didn't know how to express it.  
12/16/2012 7:22:13 PM
Daddy Dino United States
Daddy Dino
This is very cool.  In 1963 they tried to take prayer out of schools and from then on have tried to limit the mention of God and especially Jesus thru-out our nation.  If we, as Christians, are not careful we will teach our young ones and others that God has somehow become weaker or as the shirt says has left which is so not true!  But more and more people, even Christians believe that God has left.  I commend Brant for his insights and hope we all continue to realize we serve the most powerful, wise, all knowing entity in existence. Let us help the world and each other to BELIEVE and not to doubt.  
12/16/2012 7:24:53 PM
irene United States
irene
Wow that really opened my eyes. Its something you know deep down in your heart that God is always with you, even where evil lays. But sometimes you need a reminder like this to remind you that God never does abandoned you even if all those around you refuses to allow you to have God there, because no one can ever take God from your heartSmile
12/16/2012 7:36:32 PM
Carol Anne Merrill Miller United States
Carol Anne Merrill Miller
When I noticed that quote appearing right after the school tragedy it really rankled me, but I could not discern why...thankful for this clarification.
12/16/2012 7:36:50 PM
Barbara United States
Barbara
That is totally AWESOME! And I'm ashamed that I hadn't figured it out already! He will NEVER leave us or forsake us! Thank You, Jesus!
12/16/2012 8:28:28 PM
Leiani Watson United States
Leiani Watson
I have been saying and thinking the same thing.  AMEN!!!
12/16/2012 9:00:40 PM
delight United States
delight
Absolutely,Brant! Amen!
12/16/2012 9:01:46 PM
MoJo United States
MoJo
I totally agree Brant. We didn't kick God out, he's always been there. Even though we don't know why God didn't stop this, we do know that He is in control and has never left.
12/16/2012 9:39:38 PM
TC United States
TC
While I agree with your post as always, Brant, (and of course I may be wrong) I think the Bible is clear also on what happens when people decide they don't want Him in their lives. He will not intrude where He is not wanted with the wicked, even though He is still of course with those who follow Him.
12/16/2012 9:58:51 PM
aolani United States
aolani
Thank you for your post.  I had previously seen this picture (shirt) on a friend's Facebook post and immediately liked it.  But your post makes me look @ it in a different angle.  You are right.  Who are we?  God is God.  Period.  Amen.  Smile
12/16/2012 11:44:53 PM
Amy United States
Amy
As a public school teacher, I totally agree, Brant!  Just because *I* can't express it verbally to my students during "work hours" doesn't mean I'm not praying "unceasingly".  God hears us regardless of whether we say our prayers out loud or not.  Also, while my "right" to freedom of practicing religion in my classroom may be "harnessed", my students have the right to say ANYTHING they like!  Their freedom of religion is PROTECTED in schools.  So, instead, I encourage my little "Jesus Freaks" to "express their opinion" on the matter.  Smile  I'm more of a "facilitator of conversation" at that point...being sure to allow everyone to have their say.  (It's so much fun!)  Besides, there is another t-shirt/bumper sticker/poster/etc. that says, "As long as there are tests, there will be prayer in schools."  Smile
12/16/2012 11:48:35 PM
Cheese Doodle Bandit United States
Cheese Doodle Bandit
Have you perchance spoken about this on the air?  I think the problem these days is people let fear control them.  They don't want to mention God or pray to Him inside a school because they're afraid they'll get in trouble.  I think a lot of people would benefit from you reading this on the air.  They need a reminder.
12/17/2012 4:46:58 AM
Chuck Petersen United States
Chuck Petersen
I agree with you Brant and also with TC and with Amy. However many school districts don't allow even free speech where it comes to speaking about Jesus even from the students.

God is less prevelant in society today than anytime in the past in this country and our awareness of a Holy and Loving and Righteous God is less and less, but whose fault is that? It is the churchs' as we have failed to do what God has called us to do!
12/17/2012 6:13:47 AM
Amy Philipsen United States
Amy Philipsen
Chuck P, yes, but saying there's violence in schools  because we're not praying in them is like emotional blackmail and saying it right after a shooting like there was is kinda mean.
12/17/2012 6:28:02 AM
Stormy Bishop United States
Stormy Bishop
Well said. I love it
12/17/2012 6:34:44 AM
nancy United States
nancy
While I appreciate that you are a literal thinker , you have missed the point entirely.
12/17/2012 7:59:39 AM
anonymous United States
anonymous
God is in public schools...I send my 3 kids in every day and pray over them. They tell me so many cool stories of how they stand up for what is right. They are lights in this dark world. I went through private Christian school for all my school years, even college, and I admit that I have random fear-filled days where I wonder if I should just home-school like many of my friends do. We can't afford private school. So that is not our personal answer. Just when the fear almost overwhelms me is usually when my kids smiling faces come home with another great story! What I really start to wonder is why are all the Christian families pulling their kids out of public school?? It's what you teach and encourage in your home that matters. Didn't Jesus call us to be light and salt?? Unfortunately I know lots of Christian who are afraid to shine or dirty-up their image. I don't know. Just thinking out loud here but it is nice to be encouraged as a Christian public-school family mom. Thank you for pointing this out--God is here with us! Keep shining your lights Smile
12/17/2012 8:03:24 AM
anonymous United States
anonymous
loved what Crystal had to say "just one kid walking in with Jesus is the majority--can make a difference"~
12/17/2012 9:16:10 AM
Dee United States
Dee
Noone has said that children don't have God in them or God abandoned the public schools.  They have removed God as much as they can daily in schools.  
12/17/2012 10:38:46 AM
Debby United States
Debby
So thankful that someone is finally saying this! I KNOW God goes to public school every day with my kids. During Advent we have the reminder that God came as a Jew in the Roman Empire- as a vulnerable baby when Herod was killing babies and yet still the darkness could not overcome the light!
12/17/2012 10:39:55 AM
brant h United States
brant h

Thanks so much for the comments!

As I wrote, I share the concern about restrictions on student speech (and they continue to exist in graduation speeches, solemnizations before football games, etc.)

This shirt is wrong both literally, and, I think, in spirit.  It seems vaguely triumphalist in the manner it puts words in God's mouth. I'd be reluctant to do that, anyway, but that's me.

Anyway, thanks again for the various thoughts!  
12/17/2012 10:56:40 AM
Zibus United States
Zibus
For once I have to respectfully disagree.

Sure God is omnipresent, I totally get that point, but he is not felt in the public schools. In a really literal sense he is not present. The public schools have become almost totally Godless and not even the influence of one student or teacher can change that.

If you don't believe me watch IndoctriNation and Expelled, two fantastic documentaries that explore how fully God has been thrown out. Teachers are fired for speaking about God at all. Students are marginalized. Guns, drugs, sexual corruption are rampant. Not even the "best" public schools are exempt.

And so, right now, our kids are being taught that there are no such things as right and wrong, that there is no God, that we evolved from goo, that Homosexuality is okay, that there are no real vices just as there are no real virtues. If this is the sort of stuff we fill our kids heads with, then we shouldn't be surprised when things like Columbine or New Town happen. They're just animals fighting the battle for the survival of the fittest. They're acting exactly as we've taught them, so why are we surprised?

We have pushed God out to the best of our abilities. We have ignored Him and pretended he doesn't exist, and these are the consequences. It shouldn't be surprising. That's what this shirt is saying, and it's correct. That's why I would like it on FaceBook, if I had one.

But, of course, that doesn't mean we should despair. God is in the business of redeeming - of turning evil into good. Perhaps good has already come out of it. Perhaps some of the students in the public schools will start waking up, will realize that there is actually evil in a war with actual good. Perhaps people will turn to God and realize that if we want to end these terrible events we must change the way we teach.

We must let God back in.
12/17/2012 11:08:56 AM
brant h United States
brant h
Zibus, thanks for the respectful disagreement!  Love your thoughts and kind tone.

I do wonder about, as I say, European, very secular, schooling, and why they are not beset with in-school violence...?

And I'd say I'm not drily discussing "omnipresence" here, so much as God's heart for children, the vulnerable, and the teachers who do, indeed, pray and bring the body of Christ into schools.  This t-shirt is bizarre, because it communicates God is not there, and would tell a student He's taking a hands-off approach.  What's more, violence happens in Amish schoolrooms and churches, too.  Just feel like this shirt communicates some very wrong things, and with a bit of a sneer.  
12/17/2012 12:57:34 PM
Hans United States
Hans
Perhaps the correct , should I say absolute correct way to know what is true is to say GOD is always there, here and everywhere ! satan can't be!

Hey Brant, Did you here about the dyslexic cult member he gave his soul to Santa !!!!

Love you Man , It's a GOD thang !!
12/17/2012 1:13:16 PM
Stanley United States
Stanley
It is true that a spiritual being  cannot be "not allowed" in school; however, when open  recognition of God through non-sectarian prayer, Bible reading or singing Christmas carols or even using the word "Christmas," is "not allowed," there is a sense in which God is viewed negatively and in effect "not allowed."
12/17/2012 1:44:22 PM
Valrie United States
Valrie
I love ya Brant, but God is a Gentleman.  He is still in the hearts of the students and teachers who love Him, but I do believe that in not being able to mention Him, not being allowed to discuss His precepts, they are shorting children in public schools.  How do you teach the importance of kindness, gentleness, and caring, without mentioning God?  People are like "What if I don't? Who's gonna stop me?" Kids and adults alike can be extremely cruel.  With right and wrong no longer being acknowledged, how are they suppose to know?  So yes, I believe God is still with the people in the schools who love Him, however, in not teaching anything about Him, I believe it ties His hands somewhat in the minds of those who don't know Him already.  This probably made no sense, but honestly, it's an extremely sad situation.
12/17/2012 1:49:26 PM
Angela United States
Angela
I do appreciate this answer Brant. When I firt saw this quote on FB, my initial reaction was how insenstive can we be. We've taken a personal tragedy, personal for so many people and turned it into a way of adding to our existing platforms of contention. We should be extending hope and being light. Even if there were any sense of truth to that statement we should not be using this time to promote a position that essential says "Oh Well.. that's what we get.". Thank you again for your boldness and obedience.
12/17/2012 1:55:25 PM
Jake United States
Jake
well, someone's looking at this completely wrong. it's a fricken protest, pointing out the fact that we seem to be trying to seperate god from the schools. are you really as ignorant as you seem? Please tell me this is not the case.
12/17/2012 1:58:45 PM
Luis Valenzuela United States
Luis Valenzuela
Tottally agree. Here's my wife's take: "THE SO-CALLED GODLESS PUBLIC SCHOOL": livingthecovetedlife.wordpress.com/.../
12/17/2012 2:33:23 PM
Esmeralda United States
Esmeralda
I agree that God cannot be kicked out of any place, however a person can choose to not allow Him in their heart. Maybe this person is the mother and/or father of a child. They do not welcome God into there home and mock God, then something terrible happens and they mock Him more by yelling, "Why did you allow this?"

No matter what, tragedies will happen and terrible things are going to effect us. And when we as a society begin to shun God, when we in our hearts decide to close the doors to him, and instead turn to worldly pleasures are we not then allowing an evil to possess our minds?

More specifically the mind of a young man, who lashed out. They say he had Asperger's Syndrome, but I highly doubt that a neural condition is to blame. I mean these things will occur because evil is real and there are families, full homes that mock God and live a life that they believe has no purpose and wonder why their children have grown up with such hate. Then they use these tragedies as fuel for their anger toward God.

So in regards to the shirt, it doesn't say enough. God is with us when we walk into any building or any crevice on this planet, but when a community begins to shun Him, when people decide to curse and ask Him to leave them alone, When a school teaches that evolution is all there is and we have no further purpose, and teachers mock the faith of students I do not want to hear them cry that God has caused this, and How could God allow such horrific events? I don't want people who want to tear down nativity scenes and who live in direct opposition to God to have the nerve to ask God, "How dare you?" When they have closed and hardened their own hearts to Him.

--
I think I may have gone a little deeper than I intended, sorry for the long comment, I've just been so frustrated with the whole ordeal in Connecticut and the people saying if only he had just killed his mother, or we need to prevent this from ever happening. It's going to happen. We can only live in hope and joy that our Savior is alive and that God has a much bigger plan for us. We can only be an example to others of the peace He gives us, because the more people who give their lives to God the more children who are being raised believing in God So when these things happen we can know that those who have loved God and given their hearts to Him are in Paradise. At least the children are in Paradise, but we need to reach out to adults and teens when given the opportunity.

I'm going to stop now, my comment was supposed to be short. XD
12/17/2012 2:39:13 PM
Andrea Duncan United States
Andrea Duncan
Thank you! This statement has grieved me and those sharing it thinking it gave some reason behind this horrific incident grieves me even more. Thank you for putting into words what my heart has been screaming for days!
12/17/2012 2:52:07 PM
Esmeralda United States
Esmeralda
I just read your response to Zibus (Who I agree with completely)

and Europe has its own problems, www.latimes.com/.../...2-pg,0,2530968.photogallery

Europe has also been on the decline when it comes to Christianity, no?
12/17/2012 3:23:44 PM
Esmeralda United States
Esmeralda
I hope I don't sound hostile in anyway, I like that you have this blog and allow a free discussion and I completely respect your thoughts and I love your show. Just wanted to throw that out there XD
12/17/2012 3:27:08 PM
Zibus United States
Zibus
Brant,

True, it's probably not the best way to say it, but it is catchy and will make people think.

But you see, churches and the Amish aren't immune from the entirely worldly outlook of the culture. Many of us have unconsciously, or consciously sometimes, absorbed this dangerous post-modern worldview. These sorts of events should be wake up calls, reminders that there is a battle that needs to be fought.

And you're doing a great job fighting that fight on air. Love your show!
12/17/2012 3:36:11 PM
Rachael United States
Rachael
Thank you for posting this. I was furious when I saw this circulating on Facebook, and you stated perfectly my thoughts once I was past the initial shock and anger. Good on you!
12/17/2012 3:37:35 PM
Joy Schrock United States
Joy Schrock
Thank you for responding to the message of this shirt.  As a public school teacher's aide and Christian, I totally agree with your post.  Thank you for reminding people that our God is present and that he does tell us that there will be trouble but He has overcome the world. I get very frustrated with the interpretation of the constitution and the people who throw around the separation of church and state to disallow any mention of a Christian religion in our public schools but He is there every day as the students who are Christ ones and teacher's who put their trust in God enter those hallways. As you were even talk about your post on air I was in my kitchen saying Amen preach it brother.
12/17/2012 3:52:59 PM
Mary D United States
Mary D
Well said!  Thank you for putting it so nicely... Smile
12/17/2012 3:54:39 PM
Chaz United States
Chaz
This reminds me of a childhood friend. I once asked him, "Can you imagine what chairs would look like if our knees bent the other way?". He then went on to say how we wouldnt be able to have chairs and physically demonstrated the improbabilty of it. I said, "Dude, you aren't supposed to analyze it. Just take it for what is". Its not to be taken literally. Its just meant to provoke a thought.
In the case of this subject, it would be absurb to think God isnt in the building. Its refering to not allowing the discussion God in a public school. When God, the ten commandments, prayer and the talk of faith were present in schools, the greatest crime was running in the halls and chewing gum in class.
When teen std's and pregnancy is rampant, condoms isnt the answer. When kids are shooting eachother, taking away all the guns isnt the answer. When kids are killing themselves, depressed, expressing anger, drugs and a therapist isnt always the answer. There are situations. But the point is, if we could bring God back into schools as a common denominator, things would change. And if we as Christains stood up for that, even by wearing a t-shirt with a clever phrase to invoke dialog, things would change.
Think outside the box. Not draw out ways why a backward chair wouldnt work.
12/17/2012 3:59:25 PM
Andy Atencio United States
Andy Atencio
So first off I find it interesting that people are replying to this and say they disagree.  I don't have issue with their ability disagree, but how can you?  The country does not keep God out of our schools.  The government does not keep God out of our schools.  Laws don't keep God out of our schools.  Our unwillingness to take God into the schools with us is what decreases God's presence in the schools.  What would have happened to the church if Paul had listened to what the "law" was telling him?  Paul took Christ's word with him in places that got him stoned and beaten and laughed at and almost killed.  There is nothing stopping a teacher from taking God into the classroom with him/her other than themselves.  Nothing stops my kids from taking God to school with them.  They don't have to mention God to live as an example of Christ and to think that the only way God can be in our schools is if we are allowed to teach about him is narrow and not at all what God calls us to do when he tell us to "be a light".  A light shines silently.  He doesn't call us to be a fog horn and shout his name.

As for what our kids are being taught, if your kids are in a school where they are being actively taught there is no right or wrong, there are no bad things to do, that sex and drugs are good, and that you should not follow any laws then maybe you need to get your kids in to a different school (Zibus).  I have been in a number classrooms over the last 14 years and I have never been in a classroom public or private where the kids were told anything and everything is alright for them to do or that carries on it's business with no expectation of acting right versus acting wrong. Ever heard of detention?

Are they given spiritual guidance in school?  NO and I am THANKFUL for that!! I want my kids to be taught and built spiritually by myself, and my wife, and a church that we choose, and youth workers who we know share our understanding of faith and Christ, and by community influences that we choose and influences like Brant and other Christ centered cultural figures.  I don't want them be taught, with no disrespect intended, spiritual beliefs by a different teacher eight times a day who may or may not share my message for my kids.

This warped understanding that the only place kids can possibly learn is during the 6-7 hours a day they spend in the classroom is absurd! The brains God has given my kids don't stop working and learning the minute the leave the school classroom. The idea that the only things that stick with kids are the things they learn in the classroom is so totally wrong.  How much of your 6th grade civics class do you remember?  I can tell you I don't remember much, but I can remember many other influences I had in my life when I was 10.

Can we please stop this whole ludicrous conversation about how God doesn't exist in our schools or in our work places or in our businesses or restaurants or gas stations or parks or whatever.  IF you take God into those places with you and live, act and behave in a Christ-like manner than guess what God is there in the form of the Holy Spirit that is in YOU!
12/17/2012 4:05:12 PM
JMelton United States
JMelton
Well said! Thanks for the perspective and being so bold to share it! This makes up for those lost man points by using "pretty please". God bless you!
12/17/2012 4:34:15 PM
Jayce United States
Jayce
Yes! This is true God was is and always will be with us no matter what and no matter where we are! Thanks for the thoughts Brant great job<3
12/17/2012 4:44:57 PM
Mark United States
Mark
Though I agree with the fact that the t-shirt has a very insensitive message, especially considering the immense pain loved ones are going through, and that The Lord Loves everyone, is near and reaching out to everyone-even those who hate Him, it clearly misrepresents Him, your response to thousands of people should be more biblically balanced. A number of places in scripture reveal The Lord showing that He would not be with people,in certain respects, if He is rejected. Please take a look at Num.14, especially verses:11-13,23,24,34,35,41-43.Ps.91 especially verses: 1-2,9-10. Is.59:1&2 is a good text that shows that The Lord is very near and of course He cares much more than anyone else, but our sin can separate us from God being able to bless us the way He wants to. He has given us free will and will honor our choices to reject Him, which will include many blessings including protection to the degree He would otherwise if we choose to make The Most High our dwelling place. Thanks!
12/17/2012 4:50:47 PM
Sarah United States
Sarah
Thanks for this. As a future teacher I'm often put off by the thought of working in a public school for fear of being required to compromise my values (and it seems even less appealing in the light of the recent shooting). But so many have gotten excited when I tell them my major in school and say "Great, we need more Christian teachers in public school!" and I feel guilty for not wanting to be one of those teachers.
Your article and comments on the air encouraged me a lot.
12/17/2012 4:55:00 PM
AmyL United States
AmyL
Good points Brant!  The truth is, by the time kids get to be school-age, they should already have an understanding of who God is and what it means to do wrong.  

I just wrote a women's Bible devotional regarding the tendency for people to point the finger at schools, political parties or guns.  But the truth is, Satan is still walking around seeking whom he may devour and people are still falling into temptation.  Mankind has always been given free choice to obey or disobey God.  When man chooses to do wrong, the innocent are often caught in the cross-fire.

The key is that the children must be taught from birth about God and morality.  Even back in the OT, people were commanded to teach their children of God and His law both by example (Joshua 4:6) and by teaching (Deuteronomy 4:9.)  Children must be taught that the greatest commandment is to love the Lord our God with all our heart, mind and strength.  And they must also learn that we are to love others as ourselves. How many adults humbly consider others *better* than themselves, much less teach their children to do so (Philippians 2:3)?

Too many children are growing up without discipline and godly guidance in an "I want" society.  They are confused, have no sense of responsiblity and respect for authority.  Our society is eerily similar to the times of the judges when "every man did what was right in his own eyes."

The violence that occurs today is not just because prayer isn't allowed in schools.  It's because families aren't teaching their children about God.  God is still there - in the schools, homes, and everywhere we go.  It is we who have left Him, not the other way around.

We can become depressed and bemoan the current state of affairs, as Elijah did in the cave following Jezebel's death threat. He felt all alone, fighting against evil.  God had to remind him that things were not all lost and that there were in fact 7,000 others just like him who had not bowed to Baal.

Thankfully, there will always be a remnant of godly people, just as there were when the few did not bow down to Nebuchadnezzar's image.  Violence has existed since Cain killed Abel, and we cannot escape it.  Praise the Lord that this is not the end of the story.  

If we die in the Lord we will rest from sorrow, pain and death, comforted in His arms.  Just like the first century Christians who were tortured and killed, we are just sojourners traveling through a dangerous land on the way to our real home in Heaven!

We must live our lives as best we can here, realizing that no matter how much we attempt to safeguard ourselves and our children, evil still exists and bad things happen.  Peace and happiness in this world are not attainable goals 100% of the time.  We have a lifespan for a reason - God does not want us to live forever in this state of pain and sorrow.  That's why He moved the tree of life from earth (Eden) to Heaven (Revelation 2:7.) That is where we will no longer have to fear violence and grief.  

Praise the Lord that our awesome God has given us a bright and wonderful future to which we may look forward in anticipation. Like Job, who lost all of his children in one day, we can know that it is God who is in control and that He will set things right in His time.

Love in Christ!
12/17/2012 5:00:23 PM
David United States
David
This meme has been making me itch, but I haven't had the energy to answer it. This is a good response. I'd also add something about what God "allows". God allows us free will. God doesn't prevent all bad things from happening (even to good people) because we aren't meat puppets. The requirement for or against obligatory prayer in schools is irrelevant.
12/17/2012 6:21:11 PM
anonymous United States
anonymous
Andy, agreed. thx for sharing.
12/17/2012 6:58:18 PM
kim United States
kim
Luis, thx for sharing your wife's blog post--encouraging words to another family letting their "little lights shine" Smile
12/17/2012 7:14:59 PM
Vicki United States
Vicki
Hi - I am an eighth grade language arts teacher.  I may not be able to "preach" God's word - but I teach it each and every day.  My kids know everyone is treated fairly in my classroom by teacher and students.  Each student is treated respectfully - even when they have made poor choices.  They see enough anger and violence in their lives, they don't need to see that in my classroom as well.  I can tell you - God is alive and well in my classroom - and there's nothing anything can do about it - but live with it.  Cool, huh?
12/17/2012 7:17:13 PM
Vicki United States
Vicki
Oops - it should be - there's nothing "anyone" can do about it.
12/17/2012 7:18:55 PM
larry United States
larry
I agree that God is in us if we accepot him, but I still like the shirt and I believe his favor on the institution of the USA and the institution of public school is no longer there. He goes where he wants but he chooses not to go where He is not wanted and where He is not glorified.

This Country has been blessed because of its belief and trust in God. Not some much anymore.

Sorry brant, just the truth.
12/17/2012 8:12:17 PM
Tiff United States
Tiff
I have a hard time with this shirt. They do not disallow teachings of God from schools. They simply don't *require* prayer time or religious teaching.


-If you want to pray, they let you pray.
-If you want to read your Bible, they let you read your Bible. In fact, many school libraries have Bibles.
-If you want to tell your friends about Christ's AMAZING gift, they let you speak.
-Teachers can talk about their faith as long as the students ask first. I knew of many teachers' theological beliefs-Atheists, Catholic, Other Christians, and Zoroastrianists
-Teachers are allowed to show what the Bible says. (they cannot say that it is fact, but they can present its teachings among others)


My opinion, as a freshly graduated high-school student, is that parents need to take on the responsibility they have, from God, to teach their kids (Deuteronomy 6 & 11). If they don't have prayer time at school, pray with them before they leave in the morning. Give them a small Bible to take to school and encourage them to take it. I had one, as does my little sister now. It's about personal responsibility and making a choice to not pass the responsibility on to the government.



--Thanks for the article it was encouraging to be reminded of God's ultimate sovereignty
12/17/2012 11:38:44 PM
Corey United States
Corey
thank you all who've commented, i truly feel i'm learning from all i'm reading and i mean all the posts whether i fully agree or not.


my take on the shirt is it's a rallying cry / wake up call to fight evil, to fight back this oppression and pushing (not God) but our talking of God publicly, openly, courageously, and unapologetically.  i see that as the tshirt author's intent, and i agree with it, but if you've seen any of my posts on Brant's blog you know i'm anti-pascifist when it comes to spirituality.  there are way too many references in the Bible about war, soldier, swords, battles, for me to think we're supposed to accept mistreatment.  what we're supposed to accept is the fact we may die in battle; not accept oppression.

i have always viewed the Bible entry about Peter denying Christ 3 times as a lesson on what we're NOT supposed to do.

The first person to make a particular mistake like that can more easily be forgiven, they had no example to go by;
we won't be judged so softly since we've been given that example.  we as Christians ARE being warred upon, i've never seen anything in America or the world like what's going on today, in all my prior 50 years on this earth.  We are not facing what we faced in 1965, we are not facing what we faced in 1975, what's happening today is new, and it's a big deal.  it's no small wonder many people do suspect we're in or near end times.

i'm also concerned for the longterm affects of pushing -discussion of- God out of our schools (i fully agree, no human can push God out of our schools, it's the humans discussing Him that is squashed).

if the alleged majority in this country is so-called Christian - why are so many afraid?  i'm not.  how about you?  

if 85% of the families with kids in a school call themselves Christian, and they decided to all send their kids to school with Christian-themed tshirts on one day defying some anti-Christian rule - who's going to be capable of stopping them?

this shirt is a warning, and a rallying cry.  if we were a minority i would have more sympathy for the fear; being that we're *supposedly* a majority i'm sorry i'm disgusted, not with "us", with those who are afraid.  

Yes i often get scolded with the "beam in eye" passage because of how i speak but i'm not backing down - i do stand up, i am prepared to die, and i'm not seeing a large percentage of other who speak similarly and that is sad.  

Please know - i only admonish Christians, i'm not wasting my time discussing this with others; they can go to a certain place, and they will.  

if only a few stand up for good, then they will infact be made to suffer greatly.  if many stand up, the evil will cower and say sheepishly "..hehe..just kidding..i didn't mean it..." and slink away.  have you never learned this in life?  

grow, a pear. ;D  <-- not an insult, a rallying cry.  plus pears are delicious :d.

12/18/2012 3:04:32 AM
Lisa Almy United States
Lisa Almy
Hello, I agree that God is sovereign. But, the phrase that is being used, "God is not allowed in school" does not mean that God needs our permission to people who use it. What people are saying is, In order to raise Godly children, who think with a Godly mind and feel with a Godly heart, you have to allow them to learn that they have a God who made them in His image. And therefore, anything you do for or against the body of man is for or against God. Also, it is frustrating when the schools are so ready to shy away from any speaking or teaching about God and when a tradegy like this happens, it's "Why does God allow this?" Hence the catch phrase! The Bible says "Where two or more are gathered God in in their midst". Don't you believe for a minute that when you sin, and when you refuse God that he is going to remian passively by and continue to watch. He cannot look on sin, and we are no longer a Christian nation, Brant. Because he gave us a free-will, if we do not "allow" Him in, he will not come.  
12/18/2012 4:06:36 AM
Lisa Almy United States
Lisa Almy
Sorry! I meant to write"where two or more are gathered in His name, He is in their midst"
12/18/2012 11:01:09 AM
Katherine Osterloh United States
Katherine Osterloh
Thank you. I shall never again 'repost' anything suggesting that God has been taken out of our schools or anywhere else. We can shut him out of our hearts (that is sad when done) but no where else.
12/18/2012 2:39:26 PM
Corey United States
Corey
radio.foxnews.com/.../...-sharing-bible-verse.html

- - - -
On Oct. 12th, Tutka was eating lunch in the cafeteria when the student approached and brought up the Bible verse. So Tutka took out his Bible and showed the student the verse.

At some point the student mentioned that he did not have a Bible.

“Walt basically said, ‘would you like mine?” Imhof said. “The student said yes and so Walt gave him his personal New Testament.”

It’s unclear who reported Tutka to administration officials. But several days later he was summoned to the front office

“The public schools are somewhat scared to death to face the issue that the answer to some of today’s problems is in Scripture,”  
Imhof told Fox News. “They are trying to be so politically correct that they are totally politically ignorant about what is needed to turn the country around.”


In this case, he said Tutka’s Bible was a gift – not the distribution of religious material.

“He’s been persecuted by the school board,” he said. “The teachers locally support him but are not willing to throw their hat into the ring lest they be intimidated and persecuted by the administration.”

Pastor Hussey said the incident should serve as a stark reminder to Christians that there is a war on the culture.

“Christianity is under attack in America,” he said. “It seems our government officials are afraid of Muslims and yet they capitulate to them and any other religious group. But when it comes to Christians – they are completely intolerant of Christians.”

Both Hussey and Imhof also shared what they considered to be a chilling wakeup call for American Christians.

“One of the Gideons in our local camp is from the Soviet Union,” Imhof said. “In most countries overseas we are allowed to go into public schools and give Bibles to students. But since this is America – you can’t do it here.”

“When the Soviet Union fells, Bibles were allowed in the schools, people could pray in the schools,” Hussey said. “It seems we have more persecution in America than they do in Russia.”

- - - -

^this child had not been exposed to the existence of much if any of the Words in our Bible.

"it takes a village to raise a child".  don't sit idly by and think "oh that child will learn about spiritual choice at home" or elsewhere.  they may not.  look at how many arab/muslim children growing up in middle eastern countries are taught only one thing about westerners and Christians - that we are bad.  so many of them believe it, because that's the only they they are allowed to hear.  

we're still a majority, we won't be in one more generation if we keep allowing talk of God to be pushed out.  if you care about others, speak up about God.  once they hear it they can and must make their own choice, but at least give them a chance.  

don't be silent.  

this country was founded largely on the need for stopping religious oppression.  

stop tolerating oppression.  what are you afraid of?  imprisonment?  death?  economic ruin?  Look up examples of such in the Bible and see what lessons you learn from the examples there.

12/18/2012 3:28:12 PM
Todd Pence United States
Todd Pence
According to the Bible, God is a vicious mass murderer on both a genocidal and a provincial scale, a character a million times worse than the psychopath who committed last week's murders. For as long as I draw breath, I will do everything in my power to keep such a monster OUT of our public schools. Can I get an amen?
12/18/2012 11:01:25 PM
Cheese Doodle Bandit United States
Cheese Doodle Bandit
Todd, please read the entire Bible for yourself before you make such accusations.  The WHOLE thing, every word.  Do not skip any pages, passages, or even words.  Do not "speed read".  READ.  Then, and only then, do you have any right to say such a thing.
12/20/2012 10:27:43 PM
kevin jaikeran United States
kevin jaikeran
This authour is right in sense of making god powerful, but you need to understand god will not mix with the ungodly until he or she repent and come to him.

Would you like to mix with people who do drugs and commit crimes. NO you would never.

So therefore if you cannot say the lord prayer in the early morning before classes start you do not ask for his help through out the day.

remember god is holy and will always remain among holy hearts and soul.

It is funny when anything happens they call upon him but then they teach in school everything happens by chance and randomly and there is no creator.
12/21/2012 7:31:13 PM
Cheese Doodle Bandit United States
Cheese Doodle Bandit
Actually, Jesus hung out with prostitutes and tax collectors...
12/26/2012 4:25:22 PM
Randy United States
Randy
A great job helping make the Word relevant and meaningful to our current world!
1/23/2013 1:43:01 PM
concerned United States
concerned
What happens when the shoe is on the other foot. SHe is pressuring him and he had doubts and concerns of what to do biblically. Also when the 2 in question are both divorced and dont know how to address this situation?
1/23/2013 2:01:33 PM
Ted United States
Ted
With my first wife, we were intimate before marriage. It wasn't the act that precipitated our divorce, but it was a series of eroded decision making due to not making a fearless commitment to honor Christ. I compromised waiting for God's best for me. I gave in to neediness and the self-generated belief that I couldn't live with out the relationship.

After one nasty and ugly divorce, I decided to follow God's plan for dating and marriage. Result - got the one God intended for me. Incredible relationship and marriage. We've gone through so much together (false prosecution, disabled child, layoffs, building a business) but we have a blessed and loving marriage.
1/25/2013 8:07:05 AM
Jeff United States
Jeff
Good point in some aspects.  God IS with us always and is not needed in the public schools by some sort of governmental dictum.  
The move to "put God in our schools" is a subterfuge put forth by unthinking and over feeling people.  God is where he belongs, namely everywhere, but in a country where freedom of religious expression is a Constitutional right, religion need not be in schools.  Religion is in our homes, or not, but where it is and is not cannot be successfully inserted in a particular place by government.  That is the ultimate recipe for failure and turmoil.  
The courts have it right, period.  Religious expression is free and guaranteed and everywhere in the U.S.
The courts genius in dealing with this issue has withstood atheist challenges and zealot's crusades.  It is perfect where it is and should not be reworked based on the latest school catastrophe.
2/26/2013 8:46:53 PM
capitalkings#1fan. United States
capitalkings#1fan.
amen so smart.
3/25/2013 1:04:15 PM
Suzan United States
Suzan
Sure, God is everywhere, but denying that God is absent from school is quite untrue. Indeed God is everywhere, but who will accept Him? Yes He is ready, He is near, at the doors, but who will see? And who will listen? God also said, His time is near, but your time is always now. You can't give up and say well leave it to God, indeed everything is in God's hands but he did also say that when He leaves, who will now go to be the light of the world??? Its God's children, its the disciples, and His Apostles from the Bible. We must go out to all the world and kindly but firmly teach God's word. Imagine two thousand years ago if Apostle Paul said," well Jesus spirit is with the Romans I guess I don't have to persuade them, nor the Greeks either. I think that THAT is hogwash. You are dismissing your obligation as a child of God to teach the word. Kids in school are rising by the multitudes acting like the people of sodom. My sister used to be a good child until she came to high school that was densely populated and uncontrolled. She became like the world and not like Christ. Why is it the evolution has such a strong hold on student but God doesn't. If you really believed in the name of God and obeyed His Holy commandments it should be upsetting for you to sea how much power the media has over children. School is a great testing ground between the child and God, to see how they can endure, and to be like righteous Lot, who was tortured everyday from the people of Sodom. The good children will endure and be persecuted and they will have strongth faith in the end and have the testimony of Jesus. Blessed be the God of Israel. Amen. His time is coming, ask yourself, are you ready for God now?

http://bgmp-w.bitgravity.com:1935/content:cdn-live/amazingfacts/live/feed01
3/25/2013 1:29:19 PM
ILuvDeer United States
ILuvDeer

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