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Truth, Beauty, and Goodness: Seeking to Repair, Heal, & Restore

December 14, 2016
By Andi McClurkin

{Written by Mrs. Andi McClurkin, Grammar School Teacher, 2nd Grade}

As a grammar teacher, I am afforded the beautiful opportunity to hear profound truths from my Grammar students in a precious, fresh, and simple way. As Grammar students contemplate the phrase truth, beauty, and goodness, the conversations are priceless. I am thankful to be a part of these conversations. May I share some examples with you?

Once, beauty looked like this. We walked around our campus and examined beauty drawn by students and displayed on the walls. On the way up the stairs, through the form of broken crayons beautifully presented, we observed the re-creation of Vincent van Gogh’s Starry Night by our Rhetoric art students. We studied Morgan’s beautiful drawing of a heart displayed in our foyer. We looked outside from the upstairs, big window and saw lovely clouds, the sky, the trees and discussed the beauty of God’s creation. I especially love that the children observed beauty, however, in the form of broken crayons in Starry Night. This is significant as it mirrors us: broken people. Why is this important? Why is brokenness essential in what we do here at Providence Christian School? Because we seek Truth in the beauty and brokenness of a world that whispers His name.

In Ecclesiastes 3:11(ESV), Scripture attests, "He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also, he has put eternity into man's heart, yet so that he cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to the end.”

Do you see that? God makes everything beautiful in its time. He has made my life beautiful through brokenness, and through the healing power of the Gospel (Truth). Have you experienced personal brokenness? A realization that life is not about you or me, but about someone bigger than both of us? Brokenness comes from an incompleteness, a longing, for that which we are created for -- eternity. The chief end of man is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever. Beauty is encountered in what God makes, and in His time, as He makes it beautiful.

So, what makes something beautiful? A helpful quote from educator Andrew Kern.

“Beauty, therefore, is one of the most important ideas in existence. And it seems to be, as I said above, a quality in an object that is most easily perceived when the object is whole, balanced, and radiant, and when the observer has “eyes to see.” One final thought: the Greek word for beauty is Kalos, which can also be translated: the good, the noble, the fitting, etc. Very interesting.”

Beauty occurs when an object is whole, balanced, and radiant. How do we then go from brokenness to beauty? Well, it is ALL through resting in the finished work on the cross. Which is how we view all of life and certainly our learning. We contemplate a broken world, full of broken people, and we look through the lens of Truth, which points us to Beauty, enabling us to behold ultimate Beauty, to see the end for which something was designed, to be imitators of Christ, goodness personified. Truth, Beauty, and Goodness serve believers as a lens through which we view our very selves, but most importantly, the way in which we view our Lord.

“And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, and the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent. For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.” Colossians 1:18-20 (ESV)

I posed this essential question in my classroom in the Grammar school: “Where do we believe we can find Truth and why is it important to know and understand truth?” I was truly elated with the answers as my Grammar students articulated truth that resonated with my own heart. One child said, “The Truth in the Bible is what fits everything together. It fits like a puzzle piece.” At Providence Christian School, we use Truth found in Scripture, in all of what we do. It provides the absolute essential component for education and the foundation for a life that is grounded and purposeful. Truth is a significant component through which all of learning becomes relevant, working together beautifully. Another second grade student observed (after an experiment with magnets), “God’s Word (Truth) is like the magnet that is attracted to the other one. It is what sticks us to God.” Yes! That is what viewing learning from the perspective of Truth does to our souls, which are created with an eternal purpose. We desire to train and equip students who will meet the brokenness in their world and in themselves with answers that require thoughtful contemplation and rigor to unfold, offering reconciliation and restoration to their little lives and their sphere of influence. And we remember that “in Him all things hold together.”

Together we are seeking truth, beauty, and goodness for the purpose of glorifying God alone in all that we do.

As we contemplate beauty in second grade, we sing this song, which points to His Truth. You can listen to it here and like us, contemplate His beauty.

Soli Deo Gloria

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