The Review and Herald


April 21, 1904

Co-operation Between the School and the Home


The work of the teachers in our schools is a part of the work of the Lord for this time. Church-school teachers must not lightly regard the responsibilities of their work. The influence is an important factor in the formation of the characters of the children and youth under their care. If they will strive diligently to keep the way of the Lord, they will be a blessing and a help to their pupils, aiding them to form characters that will stand in the day of judgment. RH April 21, 1904, par. 1

The character of the work done in our church-schools should be of the very highest order. Great care should be shown in selecting teachers. Wise men, who can discern character, should make the selection; for the very best talent is needed to educate and mold the minds of the children and youth, and to carry on successfully the many kinds of work that will need to be done by the teachers in our church-schools. No one of an inferior or narrow cast of mind should ever be placed in charge of one of these schools. Do not place over the children young and inexperienced teachers, who have no managing ability; for their efforts will tend to disorganization, and every school should in this respect be a model of heaven. RH April 21, 1904, par. 2

The teachers chosen should have the true missionary spirit; for the children placed in their charge are to be trained to become missionaries. The teachers are to learn constantly in the school of Christ. Unless they have learned to obey God's requirements, how can they teach their pupils to obey? Unless they have learned to be patient, they are not prepared to meet the many trials and annoyances of the schoolroom. RH April 21, 1904, par. 3

In their work our church-school teachers will find many perplexities. They will have to contend against the prejudices of parents who have incorrect ideas of the characters which their children should form; for there are many parents who, though professing to believe the Bible, fail of bringing its principles into the home life. But if the teachers are constant learners in the school of Christ, these circumstances will never conquer them. RH April 21, 1904, par. 4

Unjust Criticism

The teachers should not be left to carry alone the burden of their work. They need the sympathy, the kindness, the co-operation, and the love of every church-member. But there are church-members who have been quick to catch up unkind suppositions, and to speak disparagingly of the teacher before other church-members, and even in the presence of the children. Some have talked freely and bitterly concerning a teacher, though not clearly understanding the difficulty of which they were speaking. RH April 21, 1904, par. 5

This should not be. Let the one who thinks that a teacher has done wrong, follow the directions that Christ has given. He says, “If thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone.” Until you have done this, you are not justified in telling others of your brother's mistakes. RH April 21, 1904, par. 6

Let the church-members in places where schools are established, keep their own souls in the love of God, lest they become channels through which Satan will communicate evil surmisings and false accusations. Let all rally to the support of the teacher. A spirit of disunion, cherished by a few, will communicate itself to others, and will undo the influence for good that might otherwise be exerted by the school. Let church-members close the windows of the heart against the poisonous malaria of complaint and fault-finding, and open them heavenward to the healing rays of Christ's righteousness. RH April 21, 1904, par. 7

The Parents’ Responsibility

We are not to concern ourselves so much about the course that others are following, as about the course that we ourselves are following. If the children attending a church-school do not improve in manners, the parents should not unduly blame the teacher. They should, rather, closely examine themselves, to see if in the home they are such teachers as God can approve. In many cases the children are greatly neglected in the home, and are more disorderly there than they are in the school. If children who for years have been neglected in the home are not led by the teacher to live Christian lives, shall the parents, because of this, set in circulation unkind criticisms regarding the teacher? Let them rather blame themselves for their own neglect. RH April 21, 1904, par. 8

Parents have a very important part to act in making the school a success. When they faithfully act their part in the home, the work of the teacher will be greatly lightened. His courage and hope will be increased. But by a failure to govern their households, parents make the work of the teacher hard and discouraging. Parents whose hearts are filled with the love of Christ will refrain from finding fault, and will do all in their power to encourage and help the one whom they have chosen as a teacher for their children. They will be willing to believe that he is just as conscientious in his work as they are in theirs. They will encourage him by showing him that they appreciate his efforts. They will not say nor do anything that will foster insubordination in their children. RH April 21, 1904, par. 9

I am instructed to say to parents. Raise the standard of behavior in your own homes. Teach your children to obey. Rule them by the combined influence of affection and Christlike authority. Let your lives be such that of you may be spoken the words of commendation spoken of Cornelius, of whom it is said that he “feared God with all his house.” RH April 21, 1904, par. 10

A Reformation Needed

A reformation is needed among our children. Let there be co-operation between parents and teachers. Let a righteous influence be exerted in the home and in the school. Parents need to take an advance step. Let them remember that everything which brings discord is the work of the enemy of souls. Let them carefully refrain from criticizing the teacher, and begin to do practical missionary work in their own homes. RH April 21, 1904, par. 11

Parents, shall your children be lost because of your lack of faithfulness? Neither you nor they will prosper in any other path than the path of obedience. If you have failed in your duty to your family, confess your sins before God. Gather your children about you, and acknowledge your neglect. Tell them that you desire to bring about a reformation in the home, and ask them to help you to make the home what it ought to be. Read to them the directions found in the Word of God. Pray with them; and ask God to spare their lives, and to help them to prepare for a home in his kingdom. Thus you may begin and continue a work of true reform. RH April 21, 1904, par. 12

Be pleasant in the home. Restrain every word that would arouse unholy temper. “Fathers, provoke not your children to wrath,” is a divine injunction. Remember that your children are young in years and experience. In controlling and disciplining them, be firm, but kind. Encourage them to do their duty as members of the family firm. Express your appreciation of the efforts they put forth to conquer their inclinations to wrong. Let the Word of God be your rule, and ever keep in mind the responsibilities for which in the great day of judgment you must give account. RH April 21, 1904, par. 13

Of the patriarch Abraham, the Omniscient One said, “I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the Lord, to do justice and judgment.” RH April 21, 1904, par. 14

Abraham's household comprised more than a thousand souls. Those who were led by his teachings to worship the true God found a home in his encampment; and here, as in a school, they received such instruction as would prepare them to be representatives of the truth. RH April 21, 1904, par. 15

Abraham's affection for his children and his household led him to guard their religious faith, to impart to them a knowledge of the divine statutes, as the most precious legacy he could transmit to them, and through them to the world. All were taught that they were under the rule of the God of heaven. There was to be no oppression on the part of parents, and no disobedience on the part of children. God's law had appointed to each his duties, and only in obedience could any secure happiness and prosperity. RH April 21, 1904, par. 16

His own example, the silent influence of his daily life, was a constant lesson. The unswerving integrity, the benevolence, and unselfish courtesy which had won the admiration of kings, were displayed in the home. There was a fragrance about the life, a nobility and loveliness of character, which revealed to all that he was connected with heaven. He did not neglect the soul of the humblest servant. In his household there was not one law for the master, and one for the servant; a royal way for the rich, and another for the poor. All were treated with justice and compassion, as inheritors with him of the grace of life. RH April 21, 1904, par. 17

He “will command his household.” There would be no sinful neglect to restrain the evil propensities of his children, no weak, unwise, indulgent favoritism, no yielding of his conviction of duty to the claims of mistaken affection. Abraham would not only give right instruction, but he would maintain the authority of just and righteous laws. RH April 21, 1904, par. 18

How few there are in our day who follow this example. On the part of too many parents there is a blind and selfish sentimentalism, which is manifested in leaving children, with their unformed judgment and undisciplined passions, to the control of their own will. This is the worst cruelty to the youth, and a great wrong to the world. Parental indulgence causes disorder in families and in society. It confirms in the young a desire to follow inclination, instead of submitting to the divine requirements. Thus they grow up with hearts averse to doing God's will, and they transmit their irreligious, insubordinate spirit to their children, and their children's children. Like Abraham, parents should command their households after them. Let obedience to parental authority be taught and enforced as the first step in obedience to the authority of God. RH April 21, 1904, par. 19

The Lord is our Creator, and we are his children, subject to his rule. God's method of government is an example of how parents are to train their children. There is no oppression in the Lord's service, and there is to be no oppression in the home. Parents and guardians are to treat those under their care even as God treats his earthly children, with kindness and love. RH April 21, 1904, par. 20

In the home and in the school there is to be strict and faithful discipline. Neither parents nor teacher are to allow disregard of their authority to go unnoticed. They are to make immediate efforts to lead the offender into right paths. Should they neglect to correct the children when they do wrong, God would hold them accountable for the results of their neglect. But let them be sparing of censure. Let kindness be the law of the home and of the school. Let children be taught to keep the law of the Lord, and let a firm, loving influence restrain them from evil. RH April 21, 1904, par. 21

Parents, humble your own hearts before God. Begin a thorough work with your children. Plead with the Lord to forgive your disregard of his work in neglecting to train your children in the way they should go. Ask for light and guidance, for a tender conscience, and for clear discernment, that you may see your mistakes and failures. God will hear such prayers. RH April 21, 1904, par. 22

The world is watching, and it will take notice of every defect in the lives of Christ's followers. Let our words and acts be such that our lives shall not dishonor the Master. May God help fathers and mothers to purify their souls, that they may stand before him and before the world as those who are keeping the way of the Lord. RH April 21, 1904, par. 23