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Thursday, 03 August 2017
By Chaplain (Capt.) Keith Ferrell
Special to GUIDON

It’s that time of year again.

 In fact, if you pause and listen closely, you can almost hear the melancholy of children and the giddiness of parents.  Yes, it’s back to school time once again, and that means shopping for new school clothes, shoes, supplies and all the other necessities often requested by the school system.  

According to the National Center for Educational Statistics, the U.S. had a little more than 55 million students in grades kindergarten through 12 in 2016, with the average Family spending a little more than $300 per student for supplies alone.  

Although I was never a math major, it’s easy to see this equates to several billion dollars each year just to send our kids to school. It’s right about now that some of us may grasp the cost of education and where our giddiness may turn to melancholy as well.

Although we recognize the cost, we also understand that a quality education can set a child up for future success.  Like most parents, we want to make sure that our children have that competitive edge and opportunity.  

Sadly, however, we often overlook the most profound education of all, and one that only costs us our time. In the book of Proverbs the wise man writes, “Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.” (Proverbs 22:6, NKJV)  

The education that  will last a lifetime, is that one only a parent can give through Godly example.  

Over the years I have seen both the success and failures of my influence and teaching with my own children and I am convinced that every parent will, at some point, see both as well.  But one thing I can rest easy on is that there was, and I pray still is, a holy inspiration that leads our children beyond the normal education of numbers and letters.  One may advance you in this life while the other for eternity.

Be encouraged this new school year that your children are receiving a quality education within our fine school systems, but also take to heart that who and what they become in life comes more from us than books.

(Editor’s note: Ferrell is the 43rd Adjutant  General Battalion  chaplain.)
Last Updated ( Wednesday, 16 August 2017 )