Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Good and Bad (05/07/09)
TITLE: The Company You Keep
By Kathy Davidson
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I have been an educator for the past twenty-six years. When I started to college in 1976 it was not to be a teacher. My heart was set on being a doctor, but my deficiency in organic chemistry changed my path to a Psychology major. After spending a summer as a counselor for high risk children in a camp setting, I decided that my life’s path was headed toward education.
In all of the years I have been involved in the education of children in elementary, middle, and high school, I can attest to the fact that the company one keeps good or bad heavily influences the behavior of children. Peer pressure and self esteem were the catch phrases when I began teaching school in the 80’s. Much attention was focused on the building of self esteem and establishing positive peer pressure. We had classes on assertive discipline, attended seminars on peer pressure, and had numerous lectures on the value of using behavior modification techniques. In the decade of the 90’s we faced accelerated incidences of bullying and harassment, with addition of sexual harassment. Sexual harassment had to be defined in disciplinary and faculty handbooks for the protection and identification for students and or teacher involvement. And today we are witnesses to school shootings, lockdowns, and what to say and do with bomb threats. The disciplinary problems listed for the classroom of the 1950’s included chewing gum as one of the major infractions. Today infractions are defined like police reports, with Class I, II, or III offenses ranging from disrespect to violence.
I was privileged the last nineteen years to be an educator at a Christian school. I cannot say that all the children we had wore halos and floated down the halls, they did not. We all have the Adamic nature, and not all Christian school students are Christians, nor are their parents. But what we did have was the “good book”, God’s Word and the ability to use its precepts and principles in our daily walk down the halls of the school, in the classrooms, in the principal’s office.
Today’s classrooms across the nation are keeping “bad company”. A lot of public school curriculum is written by those who want to rewrite this nation’s history removing God from His rightful place as the reason and source for America the Beautiful. Children are influenced more by MTV, popular music, and movies with themes that glorify the dark, the dangerous, the forbidden, than ideals and themes which promote wholesome values and living in the “light”. Just look at the popularity of the “Twilight” series. Visit a middle or high school and look at the “costumes” that students wear to school, complete with eye make-up that depicts the dark side look.
In Corinthians 15:23 Paul addresses the Corinthians with these words, "Let us eat and drink for tomorrow we die."[a] 33Do not be misled: "Bad company corrupts good character." 34Come back to your senses as you ought, and stop sinning; for there are some who are ignorant of God—I say this to your shame.”
“Bad company corrupts good character,” so many of our youth are engaged, entertained, and enamored of the bad, the dark, the sinful, and see it as good. And each day we lose them, to the world, the roaring lion is devouring them and the causality list grows with the number of our youth who keep the company of the bad things of this world and leave it or live it not knowing the beauty of a life lived in the Light.
Christian fight the good fight for “whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any moral excellence, and if there is any praise dwell on these things.” Whatever, a favorite response of the teen, let’s change whatever’s of this world, to those of the living God.
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