Sunday, June 13, 2010

Starting Points. . .Where Our Thinking Begins!

"But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect. . . 1 Peter 3:15 (NIV)

I can't recall a time that I've ever been as excited about a curriculum as I am now about using Cornerstone Curriculum's Starting Points with my dd this year. As I began to inquire and research in an effort to decide between this and Omnibus, I repeatedly felt drawn to Starting Points and found confirmation after confirmation that my prayers were being clearly answered through the sharing and responses I received from others. . .along with the subtle (and sometimes not so subtle) direction of the Holy Spirit.

Learning alongside my child as we strive to strengthen the foundation of our faith is about as exciting as it gets from my viewpoint and I firmly believe that this will be a life-changing and enlightening experience for us. Seeing God at work already keeps me on the edge of my seat with joyful anticipation as we venture forth to find Biblical answers to these seven worldview questions that lead down a path of profound and reflective truth-seeking - and that we as Christians should have a concrete and substantiated response to.

1 - What is God like?

2 - What is man like?

3 - What is the universe like?

4 - What is the cause of evil and suffering?

5 - What is the basis of ethics and morality?

6 - What happens to man at death?

7 - What is the meaning of life and history?

Because we are "living in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation" (Phil. 2:15), it's vital that we base our thinking upon the Biblical Worldview. Scripture is unchanging, yet it's message and words are unique and personal to each of us! Our world today has turned away from absolutes. Principles that once made up the foundation and underpinnings of our country are now floating in a sinking boat somewhere on a vast sea of gray. Thus, rather than surrender to the onslaught of merciless waves with our hands in the air, Starting Points stands out as a life preserver, ardently desiring to provide a fighting chance for ourselves, our youth, and our children to rise above the undercurrents of decline and decay that continue to assault our families, our communities, our country, our world, and our Christian faith!

A spiritual relationship nurtured feebly or built misguidedly on emotional appeal makes for a weak faith that will impede our spiritual growth and hinder our efforts to live the abundant and full life God has for us. Such disadvantages limit our appreciation and grasp of who HE is, but also limit our appreciation and grasp of who WE are in HIM! Developing a Biblical Worldview serves to give one the solid foundation needed to weather the peaks and valleys of life, the questions of good and evil, the questions of life and death, along with the aptitude to discern and reprove the declining moral state around us, the pervasive culture of anything goes, and the insidious one who seeks to destroy and devour.

In the wise words of Charlotte Mason: (CM Original Series)

"But let their zeal be according to knowledge. Lay the foundation of their faith. [Details of individual opinion matter less than] that they should know fully in Whom they believed, and what are the grounds of their belief. Put earnest, intellectual works into their hands. Let them feel the necessity of bracing up every power of mind they have to gain comprehension of the breadth and the depth of the truths they are called to believe.

There is a horror of great darkness abroad, Christianity is on its trial; and more than that, the most elementary belief in, and worship of, Almighty God. The judgement to come, the resurrection of the body, the life everlasting, - these fundamental articles of Christian faith have come to be pooh-poohed; and this, not only among profane persons and ungodly livers, but amongst people of reputation both for goodness and wisdom."

Wow!. . .isn't it amazing that words written so long ago, are yet so relevant and fresh today?

And from Susan Shaeffer Macaulay: (For the Children's Sake)

"The young person should not be left to base his Christian faith on the inadequate foundation of "emotional appeals". On the contrary: our minds can look full into the face of basic questions, and the implications of Christianity can - and do - stand firmly as reasonable. . . .Mind is on our side. It is liberating, wonderful, and produces healthy growth. We don't have to keep our Christianity in a little compartment labeled "faith". If fits reality. There are good answers, good reasons. The light of truth shines brightly."

And finally, I will close with a few more choice words from Charlotte Mason:

"Of the three sorts of knowledge proper to a child, the knowledge of God, of man, and of the universe, - the knowledge of God ranks first in importance, is indispensable and most happy-making."

I hope my enthusiasm for this message and this curriculum is contagious. I hope this posts causes you to think, to question, to measure your time, to rethink your academic goals, to evaluate your own walk, and to carefully consider the quality of the many options you have available to you! What's the eternal value? What will be the measure of success? What's the bottom line goal? What's the main thing?

May we all be diligent in our efforts and responsibility to prayerfully and wholeheartedly reconcile our most important task with the minutes, hours, and days that remain. Remember, children don't wait!

P.S. Now with all that food for thought, should you find Starting Points to be impressed as keenly upon your heart as I have, then I invite you to join us at the new Starting Points Yahoo Group!


Downwritedawn said...

I am considering using Starting Points this next year. We didn't homeschool until this year. My dad will be in 8th grade this year. I've taught 6-12th grade English for years. Are you continuing to use the Worldviews curriculum? I would love to hear about your experience.

Downwritedawn said...
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