When we think of the word “launch” our minds drift to a rocket gently rising from the surface of the earth, followed by weightlessness “show and tell.” That is how it appears for a spectator. From the astronaut’s perspective, nothing but years of training and an army of support technicians could prepare an astronaut for the violence of being launched into space—deafening sound, intense g-forces—hurtling thousands of miles an hour away from home. Should one of the hundreds of systems that make the journey possible malfunction, the result could be (and has been) disastrous.
An astronaut is almost completely dependent upon systems that are mostly beyond his control. He may turn a knob, open a valve, or push a button, but in reality he is only manipulating systems and processes designed by a team of scientists; the sum total of whom are much greater than the astronaut himself. In the same way, we may fancy that we have control, but in reality we are part of a team that determines our trajectory. The question is—where is the rocket going?
NWC has a mission that expands beyond space into eternity. It is to prepare students for a lifetime of God-glorifying ministry, regardless of where our students find themselves. What an incredible opportunity! As the mission we have is much greater than space, the resources we must use to accomplish this mission must be equally greater. To Prepare Minds and Transform Hearts we depend on resources that are not of this world. Nothing but the grace of God, the Word of God, and the strength of the Holy Spirit will enable us to accomplish God’s mission. We may develop systems and strategies to fulfill His mission, but even those are dependent upon His grace.
So what are the systems for NWC that are critical to launch our students?
First, we are training our students to think Biblically. In every class we begin with the Word of God as our ultimate platform for truth, teaching our students to place each and every fact, concept, and process within a Biblical context. From Science to History, from English to Mathematics, our students are not only learning their three “R’s,” but are learning them within the overall context of Biblical truth.
The next critical system at NWC is to foster relationships as a means of helping our students to know and love Christ. We come alongside our students and families in rich mentoring relationships in hope that they will do likewise as they “launch” into the world. They will lovingly engage culture because we daily lovingly engage our students with a Biblical worldview. Again the source of strength to love our students in such a way as to draw them to Christ does not originate from us, but from God:
Now concerning brotherly love you have no need for anyone to write to you, for you yourselves have been taught by God to love one another. 1 Thessalonians 4:9
Finally, NWC is developing vibrant programs to meet the needs of our students. A new program called the Leadership Academy will not only provide our students with tools and experiences that will help them find careers, but also give them a platform to engage our culture in a way that brings God glory. Our students will be receiving specific training to impact the world, not only from a career perspective, but in such a way as to draw many to faith in Christ.
Though not as spectacular as a rocket launching into space, our teachers, by faith see from an eternal perspective that the work they do with young people has an eternal impact. They understand the strategies NWC has developed to Prepare Minds and Transform Hearts: thinking Biblically, fostering relationships, and developing vibrant programs. Yet at the same time they understand the unquestionable truth that their work is in vain unless the Lord is at work (Psalm 127:1).
In January of 2015, Terry Meyer, a long-time NWC educator took on a new leading role in our Development Department. Terry is spearheading initiatives like the Leadership Academy and others. Please contact him to learn how you can be vitally involved with NWCS and impact student lives.