Trinitas Blog

Where We Went Wrong

Posted by Ron Gilley on Oct 19, 2020 9:50:33 AM

It is a not uncommon occurrence: a mother slowly shakes her head and says to the father, “I just don’t know where we went wrong.” Something her child has done provokes the lament, and the provocation can range from bed-wetting to grand theft auto. The good news is that more children are guilty of something on the bed-wetting end of the spectrum than the grand theft auto end of it, and so things may not be as bad as they appear in the moment. The bad news is that they are sometimes just as bad as they appear—or even worse—and it is just for the parents to reflect on their work.

Before you get depressed and stop reading, trust me. My goal here is not to make you feel like a terrible parent but to encourage you from the Word and from my own experience with a lot of children and parents over the years—not to mention more than a little hindsight from raising my own children. Learn from where we (and others) went wrong, and maybe there will be fewer woeful sighs ahead in your parenting.

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Topics: Blog Posts, Parenting, Christian Living

Where Art Thou, O Courage?

Posted by Ron Gilley on Oct 13, 2020 12:24:31 PM

One virtue (If only it were the only!) that is conspicuously absent among good people these days is courage. Oh, I don’t mean to say it has totally disappeared. It crops up from time-to-time, and often just in the nick of time, in some surprisingly stout-hearted person who does the right thing regardless of the repercussions, who takes a stand for everything that is good and right when others who could and should do the same stand shame-faced, head-hung in the background.

But why? Why is courage so hard to come by? One reason may be that we think about courage all wrong. Courage does not come with being tall or strong or dense; it comes with practice. Winston Churchill is credited as saying, “Fear is a reaction. Courage is a decision.” Like any other virtue, then, courage is something that we must, to borrow from the Apostle Paul, “put on.” We must first decide that we wish to be courageous, and then we must practice courage.

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Topics: Blog Posts, Parenting, Christian Living

Who’s Your Role Model?

Posted by Ron Gilley on Oct 6, 2020 7:40:03 AM

With increasing frequency I find myself consoling acquaintances whom I find shaking their heads and muttering about the world “going to hell in a handbasket.” In many ways I sympathize with these frustrated folk—look at politics, the media, the government, our Darwinian capitalist machine. One can hardly help wringing one’s hands over the state of the country, even the state of the world. But Christians have been given some instructions about the world, instructions along the lines of taking dominion and baptizing the nations and teaching them to obey Jesus. So let’s dispense with the handwringing, shall we, and get on with the business at hand.

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Topics: Blog Posts, Parenting, True Education, Parent Involvement, Social Issues

The Value of Struggle

Posted by Ron Gilley on Sep 28, 2020 9:44:20 AM

Struggle is among the most important elements in the learning process. Learning a new thing—whether Greek, knitting, or fly-tying—is hard work and requires some pain if it is to be done well. Think of it this way: after learning something new, one is not the same person he was before he learned the new thing; he has undergone a metamorphosis. That process of change necessarily comes with some struggle and pain.

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Topics: Blog Posts, School Life, Parenting, Classical Languages

Vipers in Diapers

Posted by James Cowart on Sep 21, 2020 12:07:45 PM

As a father of five children, I have some experience with parenting toddlers. When my eldest son was a toddler, I recall being puzzled by behaviors he exhibited that he did not learn from my wife and me (as opposed to the behavior that he did learn from us). To the best of my knowledge, neither of us ever sat down with our toddler and said, “Son, here is the proper way to pitch a fit” or “Son, this is how you disobey mommy and daddy”. Such is the reality that leads me to consider my children’s sin and my response to it.

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Topics: Blog Posts, Parenting

How to Rule a Kingdom

Posted by Ron Gilley on Sep 13, 2020 6:46:12 PM

I am often asked to describe the difference between classical education and what we might call a progressive or modern education. Elements of classical education can come across as impractical while modern education sometimes seems more, well, practical. Perhaps a story best explains the importance of the impractical. This story is based on one told at this year’s Trinitas Convocation ceremony.

This is the story of a fantastical social experiment. It all began with two young men, Johann and Ned. Johann was brought up in a royal palace and Ned in a lawless slum. Johann was cared for from his birth by a loving family. He was taught from an early age that he would someday rule the kingdom. In preparation for his rule, Johann was given an education that went beyond training for an occupation. He learned to paint, to sing, to play the violin. He read the Greek philosophers and studied geometry and calculus. He learned to speak and write well and to debate important issues. Johann learned etiquette, that is, he learned how to treat other people in a way that dignified their humanity and made them feel loved and respected. He was held to a high standard of character and integrity. His conduct was expected to be honorable, a model for others to aspire to, and it was.

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Topics: Blog Posts, Classical Education, True Education, Social Issues

Education Fit for a King

Posted by Ron Gilley on Aug 29, 2020 6:56:33 PM

The Apostle Peter probably shocked his contemporary audience when he declared them “a royal priesthood” in 1 Peter 2:9. Can you imagine his converted Gentile audience, who had known only the rule of kings for their entire lives, now hearing themselves described as royalty for the first time? They must have thought, Huh? You talking to me? But then, maybe we react the same way to Peter’s message today. Just like those Gentile converts, we too are royalty. We are kings and queens in the kingdom of God, serving under the True King, Jesus.

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Topics: Blog Posts, Christian Education, True Education, Christian Living

Hope Causes Change

Posted by Ron Gilley on Aug 24, 2020 9:29:36 AM

The Christian faith is not based on karma or coercion. It is instead a faith of hope. Faith in Christ is the knowledge of and belief in the truth and effectiveness of His death, burial, resurrection, and ascension. The knowledge of these things and belief in them give us hope for our own resurrection and ascension that we might spend eternity with God. Hope. Faith in Christ gives us hope, and that hope should change us.

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