A Combination of Liberal Arts and Christianity
A Combination of Liberal Arts and Christianity
Two ways of thought and life are combined to make one learning environment. Liberal arts and Christianity seem like two separate concepts to most, but together they create a harmonious setting for an individual to grow in a multitude of ways. A Liberal Arts College creates a life long thinker that becomes adaptable to society using their knowledge to make decisions. In Holmes pg 35 he says, “ Liberal education is an open invitation to join the human race and become more fully human. Its goals are to read and write and thereby think independently, and appreciation of lasting values coupled with the ability to make sound value judgements and live by them, a critical appreciation of the past and responsible creative participation in the future.” We are educated from kindergarden to 12th grade to learn the fundamentals of all subjects with hopes to impact the society as an educated citizen. This hope is continued if we choose to further our education in college with a specific emphasis on a major. Like many students with a major, Christians are faithful students that use the Bible to guide their daily lives, but to the rest of the world they can be viewed as sheltered and limited to their beliefs. This causes a hindering on effectiveness that Christian have in the community and a misunderstanding of the validity of their thoughts. in Holmes pg 6 he supports this thought by saying,”
Unless we understand the thought and value-patterns of our day, as well as those of biblical revelation and the Christian community, and unless we speak fluently the language of our contemporaries, we tragically limit our effectiveness.“ With a Christian College education is heightened by integrating literarary works, theories, and concepts to Christian commitment, moral, and faith making a collaboration of endless possibilities. This creates a well rounded opportunity for students to learn at a college with the strengths of both liberal arts and Christianity called a Christian College. We are not limited to any one way of thinking. As people we want to explore and question the how, what, where, and why’s of the world. The Christian College does not limit the ability of self perception or thought, but encourages the process. Using liberal arts to educate the Christian learner and further their insight in the world is a primary purpose of a Christian College. As stated in Holmes pg 8 “…integration of faith and learning remains the distinctive task of the Christion liberal arts college.” The worldview of Christianity should not be limited to ones home, but incooperated throughout a persons education to further equipt them for a future that will continue to challenge and question their abilities.
In support of this thought, On page 36 Holmes writes on the ever lasting benefits of education,” If the person, including what she becomes in this life, has an eternal destiny, then what I become in the process of education lives on forever… Christian liberal arts education has an eternity in view.” For most, being a student is only a fragment of a lifetime. That is why the importance of receiving a well rounded education that a Christian College has to offer is essential to establish a foundation of education to apply to the remaining years of our lives. Learning with a purpose to become a reflective being, and value being, and a responsible agent will prepare an individual to step into the world and make educated, reasonable, and moral decisions. A reflective beings have a passion to learn, ask, and wonder which leads us to analyze and come up with our own thoughts of possibilities. Reflectiveness sometimes leads us to have a birds eye view of a thought as a whole as opposed to thinking in a narrow, closed minded way. Causing us to become more critical thinkers and nurture our natural inquisitions. Holmes states, “ “To teach a person to read and write is to teach him to think for himself, to develop more fully the possession of his God-given powers.
He becomes in fact, not just in possibility, a reflective, thinking being.” Next, as value being takes a worldview of everything important to them and acts on those thoughts and feelings for direction. In a Chirstian College we see those values as what God has created in the the reflection of Him, us. Actions we take have effects and the choices of those actions can not be learned by reading a book, but the foundations of values can guide a person towards a better outcome. Last, there is the need to be a responsible agent. As Christians we are accountable for our actions and are governed by our Lord Jesus Christ. Decisions of right and wrong are presented daily, but as a Christian going to a Christian College we are taught the principles of reasoning through education and guided with the righteous path God has called us to live. The world is filled with possibilities and opportunity, but it is the people we become with the help of a Christian College, that steers us on the road to a life of reflection, value, and responsibility.
A Christian College provides a basis in creating a holistic person by incooperating faith with a liberal arts education. To see life as one picture rather than a million tiny pieces in a puzzle can create a smoother transition from college to the real world. Often students face the delema of just figuring it out. There is no how to manual or direction guide of life. As Christians we look to the bible for answers and get the general idea of what should be done with digging into our faith, but the is an element of critical thinking that must be applied. That kind of thinking is learned though a Christian College. “ If a person, including what she becomes in life, has an eternal destiny, then what I become in the process of education lives forever…Christian liberal arts education has an eternity in view.”(Holmes 36) No one person or book can teach us the do and don’ts in life, but a well round education can prepare us for a life of constant decisions and obstacle to overcome.