Saturday, September 04, 2010

Place for a Christian School

"You said what?!" I plopped down on the chair next to her bed, and let out a frustrated moan.  My dear mom had always been outspoken like her father, C.J. Plett, and I was used to that, but now in the last days of her life, her thinking process had become slightly befuddled, and we were never quite sure what she would come out with.

It was right at the time when we were preparing to set up an ACE school  to help our older daughter, Susy.  She had been homeschooling since the oldest of her three had reached kindergarten age, but she was starting to burn out and we were afraid that, without help, she would have to send them to the public school.

My brother Ben had been at the funeral party and Dad's funeral, and had been talking to us about his ACE school.  He told us that every one of the students who had stayed with them right through the twelfth grade was successful in life and ministry.  It was an impressive record for a school that had been operating for twenty years.

We prayed about it and decided to give Accelerated Christian Education a try.  We knew that there were several families in the area that had expressed an interest in having a Christian school and we wanted to help them.  We also wanted to help our own family.

Our daughter, Susy, was willing to be a teacher.  All we needed was to take some training, sign up the students, and find a place for the school.  We booked our training in Texas, and started contacting families.  It looked like we would be starting with twenty students.

All was going well except for one thing.  We could not find a suitable building to house the school.  Every place we tried was either too expencive, or was just not suitable.  Finally we checked with the church where we were attending.  The pastor was enthusiastic.  He didn't see a problem.  The Sunday School rooms were only being used one hour a week, and a school would be a ministry extension. It would also provide a small suplimentary income for the church. He would bring it up at the next board meeting.

But before the meeting could take place, my mom met the wife of the head deacon.  The church ladies were doing a service in the nursing home, and this sweet sister went to invite Mom to the recreation hall, but my mother decided that this was not for her. 

"No, I could never fellowship with you," she said, and then proceeded to tell this shocked deacon's wife that her church doctrines were all wrong.  The lady asked politely if Bruce and I felt the same way, and my dear Mom assured her that we did.

When Mom told us what she had said, it shook me up.  I wanted to crawl into a hole and hide.  How could Mom say such a thing?  We were not surprised, soon after, when the board met and voted unanimous against giving us permission to use the Sunday School rooms for a school.

It took a bit of effort to remind ourselves that no matter what happened, God was still in control.

But our problem still remained.  We still felt we needed to start a school, and we still had no facility.

We proceeded with our plan and headed for Texas for a week of intensive training.  (It was during this time that Love Story part 2 took place.) Meanwhile Susy was working from her end in Paisley.  Partway through our training week she called.  We were loosing students.  We weren't sure we would have any other than our own family by the time we got back, and yet Bruce felt that the Lord was telling us to continue on, that we would have a school and we would have eight students.

It took a little longer before we realized that God had already given us the facility to house the school.  We were living in it.  The Lord hadn't given us this beautiful board and batten home just to fix up for ourselves to be comfortable in.  The grand sized living room with the open staircase was the perfect place for a learning center, and the 10' x 10' downstairs bedroom that Anita was vacating to get married, would make a cozy sitting room that could double as a kindergarten classroom.

We had eight students, and we had a wonderful little school in our home.  The kindergarteners  felt comfortable sitting with this old Grandma in the comfort of her home.  The atmosphere was beautiful, and the Lord accomplished good things in that school.  If we had rented the church Sunday School rooms, we would not have been able to make ends meet with the number of students we had,  but for eight students our house was ideal.  My mom had unknowingly saved us from making a big mistake.

Isn't it special how God can even use a deteriorating befuddled mind for his purpose?

For the previous posts see:  Love Story part 1 and 2

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