by Adam Kronberger / Head of School
The nightly “tuck-in” bedtime routine probably needs a different name in our house. More often our children must first be “untucked” from our bed, or a comfortable couch, before any bedtime routine can commence. As much as I often am exhausted and want the bedtime routine to complete quickly, there is much value in investing time into the process. Something curious always seems to happen after about 7 minutes of being present with one of my children around bedtime. Comfortable silence or simple chit chat soon develops into meaningful conversation. When a child is in a safe environment built on trust, love, and good will, it is easy to move from shallow to deeper waters.
At the recent high school retreat, close to 100 students and staff were gathered around a campfire the final night. A very simple but strategic decision had been made to give room for the aforementioned safe environment. True transformation often does not come in the contained classrooms or scripted chapels. Transformation begins in the heart and is fully realized in community. It takes time. Unscripted opportunities where a child and a parent or mentor are simply present and engaged is at the heart of the discipleship process.
Much like a bedtime routine, when the high school students were asked to share a word of encouragement you could hear the crickets chirping (literally). As the campfire crackled and the minutes passed by, a few courageous students slowly began to volunteer an encouraging word or a thankful comment. It began slowly with teachers often leading the way. And while it was certainly past my bedtime, space and time continued to be given as students entered deeper waters. The result was a group of believers who put aside the things of the flesh in order to walk in accordance with the Spirit. Pride was replaced with humility, discontentment with gratefulness, and discord with forgiveness.
It was a great reminder to take those moments in time, whether around bedtime or a campfire, and intentionally engage your child with open-ended questions.
– Adam Kronberger / Head of School