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Thursday, July 29, 2010

Sonlight's Christian Foundation

The following quote I found on the Quivering Daughters blog got me thinking:
If you take Jesus out of the equation, their ... culture doesn't change. If you take the ... culture out of the equation, they have no Jesus. It IS their Jesus.

Just how much does Christ permeate Sonlight's programs? Does Sonlight change if you remove the religious materials? If you take out our Instructor's Guides, does Christ remain? In short: Is Sonlight about Christ or something else? And if something else, what?

First, I realize that you may be using Sonlight in a secular school environment. For you, Sonlight absolutely can be tweaked to remove/ignore/circumvent the religious content. You could easily be living proof you can take Jesus out of Sonlight.

And yet, while I'm grateful you use Sonlight and it has helped your family love to learn together, if you skip the religious books you are missing out on a major aspect of Sonlight: A focus on missions. This may not bother you, but I think it's important to note: Sonlight is built on a Christian foundation.

Second, I know there are people who don't like Sonlight because we're not dripping with Christian materials and Bible references. We freely admit that. In that sense, some may argue that Sonlight isn't built on a Christian foundation. But I argue, in the spirit of the quote above, that the "Christian foundation" they are talking about is not about Christ as much as it is their presentation of truth. Scripture should be integral to our lives, sure, but used appropriately rather than forced into every situation. Such practices quickly lead to eisegesis. And I'm glad Sonlight steers clear of that.

Third, while Sonlight is built on a Christian foundation, I'm not comfortable saying Sonlight is about Jesus. Sonlight--as a home education company--is about homeschooling. We are here to help you on your home education journey. We are focused on homeschooling while constantly looking to honor and serve Christ in how we do that.

So, no: Homeschooling is not "our Jesus." We seek to follow Him in everything we do. Our programs are designed to help you follow Him more closely. In short: Sonlight is firmly rooted in Christ, but we gladly build on that foundation.

May we never replace Christ with an agenda or a methodology or a position. Rather, may our agendas, methodologies and positions be built as we focus on Him.

 ~Luke Holzmann
Filmmaker, Writer, Empty Nester


Julie said...

This is one thing I LOVE about Sonlight. Our children need to be exposed to both sides and learn the WHY of what we believe. The missions focus is possible my favorite part. Most Christians are ignorant of the sacrifices made daily by missionaries all over the world both now and in the past, I know it's a part of my education that was entirely missing. I am thankful my children will not be able to say the same thing. :) Thanks you Sonlight!!

Luke Holzmann said...

Thanks, Julie!



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Luke Holzmann
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