TPCA Nifty News

December 4, 2014

Nifty Instructions for This Issue

This issue has six items of Niftiness, but the first one is kind of longish. Don't be thrown off track - it is a really good piece of news. Then remember to read the rest of the nifty news or you might be left in the gingerbread dust!

Biblical Reasons For Sending Children To A Christian School by Wayne Grudem, Ph. D.

Dr. Wayne Grudem, Research Professor of Bible and Theology at Phoenix Seminary in Phooenix, Arizona, and his wife chose Christian education for their children. He wrote a paper sharing six biblical principles they found very persuasive in support of their conclusion that Scripture directs Christian parents to give their children a Bible-based education whenever they have the opportunity to do so. We want to share his research with you.

Each of the next few issues of Nifty News will include one of the six principles noted by Dr. Grudem. These are often the same thoughts families share with us when moving to Traders, or in other cases in part when leaving Traders for public school. We hope that this series will encourage you in your decision to partner with us in your child's education. Maybe it will also encourage your friends and neighbors who have considered Traders but not yet taken the plunge. Feel free to share Dr. Grudem's thoughts.

Biblical Support of Christian Education Principle #1: All of a child's education should be Bible-centered and God-centered

(written by Dr. Wayne Grudem, Ph. D)

"Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord" Eph 6:4

I'm saddened when Christian parents tell me of the frustration and stress their children experience in secular schools, but I also wonder if the parents aren't doing exactly what Ephesians 6:4 says not to do: putting their children day after day in situations that "provoke them to anger," or to sorrow or frustration.

Training that is not "of the Lord" will do that: the contrast in the verse ("do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord") tells us we should expect children "provoked" to anger from secular education.

But doesn't this verse only apply to home and church?

The single most common objection to Christian schools - and one I used to believe - says that Ephesians 6:4 only applies to home and church. "We do bring our children up in the 'training and instruction of the Lord,'" parents tell me. "We have a Christ-centered family life and we're involved in a sound church with a great youth program. We are obeying Ephesians 6:4."

But are they? Yes, in two of the three major influences in their children's lives (family, church and school). We must be thankful for that.

But parents who say "church and home are enough Christian training" probably haven't realized the tremendous influence school has on all of life. Church training receives 3 to 5 hours per week (3% to 5% of a child's waking hours), whereas school training receives 30 to 40 hours per week (30% to 40% of a child's waking hours) - nearly 10 times as much as church!

I am simply unable to see a valid way to interpret Ephesians 6:4 without applying it to children's schooling. The present-tense Greek verb here (ektrephete) implies continual activity: "keep on bringing them up, continually bring them up, in the training and instruction of the Lord." All of their education, all of their training, is to be "of the Lord."

If we give our children "training and instruction" that excludes God's words 6 hours a day, 5 days a week for 12 formative years, can we honestly say we have continually brought up our children in instruction that is "of the Lord?" We were convinced we could not.

Deuteronomy 6:6-7 speaks of God's commands:

"And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. [7] You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise."

Every part of the day should be "educational" from a biblical perspective. Can we then exclude the most important learning times for 12 years of a child's life and say these should be "secular," empty of biblical teachings? Could Moses have said, "Talk of God's words all day long - except when your children are being educated"? No, I am convinced he could not.

Psalm 1:1-2 says the "blessed man" whom God approves is one who

walks not in the counsel (or advice) of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers," but

"on [God's] law he meditates day and night."

Think of a child in public school. Then think of a child in a Christian school. Then ask yourself: Which part of Psalm 1:1-2 best describes children in public schools? Which part best describes children in Christian schools?

(next issue:Principle #2:Education should be positive and truthful)

It's So Amazing to See God Move to Solve Our Dilemmas

God stirs hearts. You've probably felt it your self. We read about it all the time in Scripture. God also works in mysterious ways to solve problems before we even know they exist. Traders Point has just experienced this in a wonderful way. How?

For some time, our Library/tech teacher, Ms. Mais, had felt unsettled in her current role at Traders Point as Media/Library but still felt called to be part of what is happening here. At the same time, God was preparing to call Mrs. Beiberich, 6th grade teacher, to a new ministry teaching special needs students in IPS. When Mrs. Beiberich was called and offered the IPS position in late November, Ms. Mais applied to take over her 6th grade class.

This was really a perfect match for everyone. Ms. Mais has years of teaching experience, connects very well with that age group, knows our school and students (and they already know and love her) , is fully trained in the PLC methodology we have implemented and her strengths are English Language Arts and Social Studies - just like Mrs. Beiberich. She is the perfect complement to Mr. Cook our other 6th grade teacher!

Likewise, Mrs. Beiberich has a special education background and a heart for helping struggling students to achieve their best. This is a wonderful new ministry for her gifts!

God was working behind the scenes to prepare the way for His servants to move to new areas of ministry before we even knew the need would exist for change. How marvelous and gracious a God we serve! Many blessings to Mrs. Beiberich as she moves December 8th to her new students in IPS, and to Ms. Mais as she moves to her new classroom of 6th graders here at Traders Point. Please join us in praying that the person God has assuredly prepared to replace Ms. Mais in the Media Center will be identified soon.

Want to Enjoy the TPCC Christmas Eve Service but Don't Want to Miss Your Own Church Service? Now You Can!

Traders Point Christian Church has announced a unique schedule for Christmas Eve services this year. They will offer identical services on Tuesday, December 23rd and Wednesday, December 24th held at 5 pm and 6:30 pm both dates. This helps accommodate families who might need to travel on Christmas Eve.

This also gives our school families who do not attend Traders Point the chance to enjoy the TPCC Christmas Eve service on the 23rd and still attend your own church's service on the 24th! And if you do attend TPCC, the 23rd is a great opportunity to invite friends who might also be blessed by the TPCC service. Childcare is available for 36 mos and younger; everyone else is invited to worship together as a family.

Warm the Cockles of Your Heart - Join us for Happy HALLidays Dec 19 @ 8:45

If you've been around here for a while, you probably know what Happy HALLidays is. If you are new or have not joined in, we invite you to take 15 minutes out of your pre-Christmas week to celebrate Christ's birth with your Traders Point family.

On Friday, December 19th at 8:45 am, all of our students, faculty and staff and guests gather in the HALLways of our school to sing Christmas Carols, pray and hear a reading of the Luke 2 version of Jesus' birth. It takes just a few minutes, but what a wonderful way to begin our last day of classes together before break. Younger students in PJ's, families, children filled with anticipation - please be a part with us.

The Best Thing About Finals? Starting With a FEAST!

Early on in the life of our high school program, Mrs. Debbie Byely began a tradition for our older students known as Finals Feast. Before testing begins on the first day of finals (Dec 18 this year), parents and staff set up a bountiful breakfast buffet to fill the students' tummies so they can focus on their tests. Each year there seem to be a few surprises and snacks for them to take along their day. This is such a great tradition for our high school students - thank you to Mrs. Byely and her elves. Make sure your 9th - 12th grader is here by 7:45 am to enjoy! (Their classes don't start until after 8 am so they have plenty of time).

Ye Maids & Masters! Traders Point Madrigal SOLD OUT!

(So why am I telling you about it? Because it is REALLY NIFTY that our students get to do this each year! )

Wikipedia says:

A Madrigal Dinner or Madrigal Feast is an American form of dinner theater often held by schools and church groups during the Christmas season. It is set in the Middle Ages and is generally comedic in nature. The meal is divided into courses, each of which is heralded with a traditional song.

Sounds kind of complicated, but tons of fun, doesn't it? Well, for many years our high school vocal ensemble hast prepared and presented a complete Madrigal Feast for school family and friends. Our 7/8 grader students often join in as musicale servers for the feast guests. Mrs. Gail Powell and our students invest hours during the semester learning Olde English hymns and songs that accompany each course of the multi-course meal (normally catered by our Chef Matt). Masters of this Hall, or Greensleves might grace thine eares. Comedy skits are a key cog in this Renaissance wheel - picture Court Jesters riding on toy hobby horse unicorns and play sword fights between the Knights in defense of their lady's honour.

The great news is this happens each year whilst Christmas is upon us; the not-so-good news if ye don't already have a ticket is it is sold out for this year. So get ye thou tickets early next year (or push demand so maybe the King and Queen might plan multiple performances). Join us in praying for their rousing success on December 6th.

Educational Pun of the Week

What do elves learn in school?

The Elf-abet

Rapid Reminders (things we really want you to remember)

  • Madrigal Dinner (sold out) - Dec 6 @ 6:30 pm
  • K - 6 Christmas Program at TPCC - Dec 15 @ 6 pm
  • 4th - 11th Instrumental Christmas Program at TPCC - Dec 15 @ 7:30 pm
  • Chef Matt's FABULOUS annual Christmas Feast - Tuesday, December 16th
  • Early Childhood Christmas Programs - Dec 16-17
  • High School Finals Feast - Dec 18
  • 7th - 12th Finals - Dec 18-19
  • K-12 Happy HALLidays - Dec 19 @ 8:45
  • All classes resume - Monday, Jan 5
  • Using SCRIP gift cards from TPCA and online shopping at - now through, like, forever