Husband. Dad to 5. Student Ministry Pastor. Follower of Jesus. Yatta yatta.


I think it’s because I work in the church and I would never do in the church what Christian High Schools do, but I’m so sick and tired of hearing about Christian Schools kicking kids out because of stuff they post on their myspace account. Don’t get me wrong, I confront students about their lame suggestive pics and gossip comments and all kinds of stuff on myspace. I think much of the stuff posted there- including the sexually suggestive singles ads I have to get past everytime I log on to the stupid thing- is junk.

I have an account for the sole function of being salt and light into my students world there and because so many of them use it. (The “church” is funky about this though- I know of at least one youth pastor who was told that if he did not delete his myspace account the church was going to fire him.) On the flip side, I have even seen some use it as a great outreach tool and met a youth pastor this week who meets his youth group students and their non-christian friends by posting upcoming church events in the announcement’s section of his space. I think that is pure genious. Brilliant even!

We even require our leadership kids to tell us if they have one and let them know that we care about that part of their life as much as we do about how they behave in youth group. I get that part. I’d guess I’d even get it if they were removing students from a leadership role at school like saying they can’t hold an ASB office while participating in behavior that has strong sexual overtones or whatever…. but they remove them from being able to attend at all. Go get an education somewhere else is the message. Evidently Christians can’t teach you Math or physics or about the Bible here because your myspace is sinful. AHHHHHH.

I don’t kick kids out for making poor choices. I have trouble thinking Jesus would. What is with the bubble we try to create with a false sense of holiness? I’ve never heard of a teacher getting fired for over eating to the point of glutton obesity. No student gets expelled for being jealous of others or idolizing their ipod. But I have heard plenty of reports over sexual stuff and all kinds of other “official sins” we care about.

Today I read in this months Christianity Today about two girls who were kicked out for posting “lesbian behavior” in photos and written messages on myspace. Why?

I had a conversation with a former student who is now a teacher at a christian high school in southern california at a wedding rehersal this summer and he told me of students who got kicked out of his school for myspace stuff. He said there’s this tension in the Christian school between those who see it as an “outreach to the community” and those who pay good money so that their kids won’t be tempted by the pagan world of the public school system. I got up from the table and moved until my food arrived because I was about to throw my beverage in extreme frustration the longer the conversation went on. I actually know a kid from my last youth group who got suspended for 2 days from the local Christian High School for committing 3 “fouls” in one 6 month period of time. Here’s the 3 fouls:

1. Arrived 1 minute late to class after lunch.
2. Arrived at school without a belt.
3. Forgot to spit his gum out before entering the classroom.

I’m not joking. I even asked the parent to confirm and she said she actually went in and confirmed it with the administration. It was the rules. 3 strikes is worth a mandatory 2 day suspension.

The article in CT asked a professor of Education at Biola to comment and he said “If the students won’t believe or accept that their behavior is inappropriate, ‘then the school’s hands are tied to say we can’t take the role of being redemptive.'” I don’t see how kicking kids out of school is redemptive. It seems to me to be the reverse. (By the way, the students parents sued and their lawyer claims they were “mugging for the camera”. The whole thing sounds anything but redemptive to me)

Ok.. I have to go now before I break something. I know not all “Christian Schools” are like this. I also have friends who cannot serve in a church because of the junk they see there and feel very called to the Christian School environment instead. Praise God for their calling. I pray they are salt and light there too.

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