Value number 2: God, Family, Country
Thoughts from Headmaster, Rebekah Hagstrom
Liberty Classical Academy values and encourages love of God, Family and Country. While all three are important, students are encouraged to understand that when emphasized in their proper order—as they appear here—they bring peace and fulfillment in life.
Love of God
Liberty encourages love of God as first and foremost, for when a person has a right relationship with God, they are much more likely to place importance on family and the freedoms we enjoy in this country. Jesus stated in Matthew 6:33, “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be given to you.” So by placing God first, everything else falls into the proper order.
In order to emphasize God first, we seek to model Christ-centered relationships and living throughout the entire organization. Our desire being that seeking God first would permeate every aspect of our students’ lives: from what they choose to read and watch, to how they treat their friends and acquaintances both in person and on social media, how they decide for whom to vote, how they choose to spend their time and with whom, how they spend their money, honoring God with their bodies, etc. If this is to be accomplished, students must be given ample opportunity to question, discuss, and debate all aspects of Christianity and be exposed to other religions and world views in a safe environment, while being directed towards the truth of scripture. They must be given reason for their faith rather than simply being told what to believe. The goal being that our students would avoid compartmentalizing their faith and allow it to penetrate and flourish in every crevice of their heart, soul, mind and life.
Love of Family
Love of Family is second, for it is critically important that families partner with their church and school to emphasize placing God first in their children’s lives. Strong families are essential to society. Healthy families are the best means of providing students the confidence to reach out beyond themselves and to take risks, to provide praise and encouragement to students in their work at school and in the development of their faith. Godly families are necessary to provide a robust model of Godly living.
Love of Country
Love of Country is third, for the name “Liberty” was chosen by the school founders because it represents all types of freedom that are also expressed in our country’s founding documents: political, economic, social and most importantly, religious freedom. The country’s founders recognized that God is the source of rights, not the government, and that all citizens have the right to pursue life, liberty and happiness. These freedoms must be vigilantly and intentionally preserved by the citizens of this country. Therefore, emphasis is placed on responsible citizenship and what is entailed in maintaining the freedoms we enjoy in this country.
God, Family, Country. When each is valued and ordered correctly, freedom in Christ is more likely to reign and endure.
Thoughts from K-12 Director, Jeff Button
Second in line in Liberty Classical Academy’s Body of Values is the recognition of God, Family, Country. Again, these are in numerical order for a reason. God first, always. Like a pair of glasses or contacts, once we place them on our eyes we can see everything else clearly. Without a right vision of God and his standards, we’ll have a skewed and blurred vision of everything else. Through God’s Word and Holy Spirit, we can seek to carry out his principles: “To act justly, to love mercy and to walk humbly before your God” (Micah 6:8b). In the classrooms, at all levels, Liberty staff and teachers encourage and model lives lived unto Christ. Scripture reading and memorization is emphasized throughout the program and personal relationships and friendships are always viewed through the values and principles of the Bible. While far from perfect in execution, we recognize that all are sinners saved by grace alone. Perfection comes only with a heavenly reunion with our perfect Savior.
Love of God
In our school, the love and fear of the Lord is emphasized through discussions, reflections, and studies in all courses of literature and composition, math, history, science, languages, performing arts, rhetoric and debate opportunities, etc. We learn how to disagree with grace and defend our thoughts with kindness, affording all the common humanity given by our Creator. All classes at all levels are viewed from a distinctively Christian worldview. We see the principles of God as central to everything we do in life, both in and outside of school. Each day, Liberty starts with either a Salve Deus “Good morning, God” time for the lower school students or an assembly/house time for the middle and upper school students. These are times for corporate worship, devotionals (both student and teacher led), and prayer. Students serve their community and their world through various service projects and mission trips in the name of Christ; ranging from local food shelf collections, Operation Christmas Child, Feed My Starving Children and Healing Haiti.
Love of Family
Our families too, fall under the authority and lordship of Christ. Families are a creation of God and a gift from God. Children are a blessing from God. At Liberty, we recognize the primary role of parents in the upbringing of their children, and we honor the opportunity to work together in the education of their most precious gifts. Loving families are the very foundation of civil society and the home is the most basic unit of self-government. At Liberty, we acknowledge that all education starts at home and is directed first and foremost from parents. In the classrooms and through the school, parents are always welcome to visit and see the daily operations of the program. In addition to the open-door policy for parents; each year we host Grandparents’ Day, a celebration that is second only to the Christmas concert in size and scope.
Love of Country
Lastly, we want to foster an understanding of, appreciation for, and love of our great nation. Acknowledging that God is above all nations, empires, and kingdoms helps to orient ourselves rightly as Americans. We study, know, and appreciate the foundation of Western Civilization and our own country. We see that God is the source of our liberties and not government. While not perfect, we understand that the United States of America is and continues to be, "…the last best hope for a mankind plagued by tyranny and deprivation."
Out of respect for our nation, we say the pledge of allegiance as a school. We recognize our country as unique, as special, as a rare gem in the course of human history. We teach our students the difference between various forms of government, showing that government must be limited to ensure the conditions for human flourishing. We learn all the major forms of governmental and economic systems, showing the strengths, weaknesses, and pitfalls of each. We study and appreciate the workings of our own constitution, its origins, and implementation. Students that have come through the government class at Liberty have read every word of the United States Constitution, something very few of their peers (or adults) have done. Furthermore, they understand the principles laid out therein and the duties needed to maintain it.
At the lower school level, our students learn first-hand experience in public service as they run for class president and vice-president. Students learn the skills of campaigning, stump speaking, service to constituents, and upholding campaign promises. Upper school students too, display leadership and active citizenship by participating in student council, selflessly serving those around them for the betterment of all.
At Liberty, we are working each day to build up the next generation of moral leaders. Leaders who are engaged in their communities, who are aware and active in the responsibilities and duties of citizenship. Who understand the responsibilities and duties of maintaining the proud title of American. Who uphold their God-given rights and protect them for others. Who love and serve not only their families, but their communities and their country. Leaders who can successfully be passed the torch of freedom and protect it for their children and grandchildren. We do this out of love for God, our families, and our fellow man. We know that, “America is no stronger than its people – and that means you and me.” God, Family, Country.
Quotations adapted from: Ronald Reagan, given May 6, 1983. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project. http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/?pid=41289.