I have often said God has ways of bringing good out of things intended for evil.
There is a developing story out of South Carolina where a Christian school, which has fallen on financial difficulties, has been taken to task by atheists who have been mocking them publicly to the press and on social media because of their biblical beliefs.
In an interesting twist, the mockery of the school has gone viral, people are seeing the mockery on the Internet and are sending money to the school.
There is good news from Texas. The Texas State Legislature has passed a bill that will make next Christmas a little more merrier.
While the Texas legislature was acting responsibly on the matter of Christmas, they have also dropped the anti-Christian, anti-American CSCOPE curriculum from Texas public schools.
And a little more good news from a public kindergarten in California, who tried to censor a 5-year-old from performing a Christian song at the school talent show.
Blue Ridge Christian Academy, a small private Christian school in South Carolina, announced they were in deep financial difficulties and may have to close their doors after this year because the parents, board members and other friends and donors have not been able to come up with $200,000 needed to keep the school open.
This was recently reported by American Family Association.
The school teaches basic educational subject materials, but also integrates a Christian worldview into the overall education.
In that spirit they teach the kids evolution and help them to understand it is a theory, not a fact, and the Big Bang theory.
They also teach biblical Creationism, and teach the kids that Creationism is their deeply held belief.
This spring the school has been using Dr. Ken Ham's curriculum, "Answers in Genesis," for a teaching segment on Creationism. This material teaches creation happened as told in the biblical six-day Genesis account.
At the end of this teaching segment the teacher gave a quiz on the subject matter.
Pher Reinman, a local at the time, got a copy of the quiz and posted it on the Internet. From there it went to Facebook and elsewhere, finally becoming viral.
Atheists then adopted the cause and began to post slurs, threats and bullying comments toward the school and the teachers.
One post said, "I went to a school like this in South Carolina. Now I'm a college professor who spends his days trying to undo the damage this rubbish has done."
Another post said, "I feel sorry for this kid once he goes anywhere public and expresses his beliefs and is ridiculed."
The school teachers are being called child abusers, brainwashers and ignorant because of their Creationist beliefs.
One post said they wanted "to chop off Baker's head." Diana Baker is the director of the school.
Another post said they "hoped the teacher would die a horrible death."
As people around the country begin to see this stuff and hear the story, they began to send money to the school.
This past Saturday, USA Today published an article about it. They affirmed some of what AFA was reporting, but clearly did not have any favorable inclination toward the school or the story.
So I personally spoke with a couple of administrators at the school yesterday.
It is true that they are small, Christian and in financial trouble. It is also true that they teach evolution as a theory, the Big Bang as a theory and teach that they believe in the Creation account in Genesis.
And they also told me they have indeed been receiving donations from people across the country, but are not yet near the $200,000 needed to keep the school open.
However, they told me whatever the outcome, they have already seen the hand of God's faithfulness in that they have been able to pay back wages to teachers and take care of current bills.
They shared other miracles and blessings that have come to them individually through this trial.
It is yet to be seen if they will remain open. They told me everyone at the school is committed and wants to continue the mission of helping kids, many of whom are on need based scholarships, coming from very difficult personal circumstances. But whatever the outcome, the public response has been a meaningful blessing to them, they said.
And they told me God is ultimately in control.
The harsh treatment and the violent verbal attacks and bullying is unfortunate but becoming more and more a part of the Christian experience in America.
Today is their last day of school for the year. Major decisions lie ahead.
Please remember them in prayer.
Merry Christmas from Texas.
Each year as Christmas approaches, we hear "there is no war on Christmas" while we watch government run public schools and buildings ban everything from snowflakes, snowmen, snow women, Santa and fir trees, because in December these and other symbols become what could be seen as "religious symbols."
Our words must be carefully censored and considered. "Merry Christmas" or "Happy Hanukkah" is not the expression secularists are looking for in December. After all these symbols and words most likely violate the separation of church and state.
The Texas State Legislature gave Texas and its people an early Christmas present the other day. They passed legislation called the "Merry Christmas Bill" that allows greetings such as "Merry Christmas" and "Happy Hanukkah," even at school.
This should allow the various school districts to relax a little and enjoy themselves at Christmas time, giving them an opportunity to stop being naughty and be nice.
And while the Texas legislature was in the spirit of fixing things in the name of common sense and doing good, they also fixed CSCOPE, the lesson plans used by 78% of the public schools in Texas. They, as others, had become concerned about the anti-American and anti-Christian content in the curriculum.
Earlier this year, the State Senate Education Committee had turned on the lights and examined the materials and its content.
They found the lessons included teaching that the original Boston Tea Party was a terrorist act. They also discovered that the 6th graders were being asked to design a flag for a new socialist country, and Allah was recognized as the God of Abraham.
The legislature has dropped it .
CSCOPE has announced it will no longer be developing lesson plans. The legislature has assured the state education folks that should CSCOPE ever become involved in creating lesson plans, it will be under a very watchful eye.
The legislature said their aim was to see that this outrageous curriculum never enters public schools in Texas again.
And finally, I've got to tell you about a 5-year-old kindergartner at Salt Creek Elementary School in Chula Vista, California.
He entered his school's talent show. When they found that he was planning to play a Christian song on his guitar, they said he couldn't do it. They censored him. Withdrew him from the program.
Brad Dacus, president of Pacific Justice Institute in California, a Christian legal advocacy organization, sent the school a very direct and explicit letter expressing their concern that the school would censor the boy because he was going to play a Christian song at a talent show.
Considering all things, including the past successes of the Pacific Justice Institute, the school changed their mind, decided that performing a Christian song at a talent show does not, after all, constitute the school endorsing a religion.
The 5th grader sang and played "Our God is Mercy" at his talent show last week. And all is well. The school has not become a theocracy.
Have a great weekend.
Be Vigilant. Be Discerning. Be Informed. Be Bold. Be Prayerful. Be Blessed.