Thursday, January 31, 2008


Today was a day of sweet victory for my son Dan and 103 0f his classmates.

Just got back from my son's 5th grade D.A.R.E. graduation. For those of you who aren't familiar with this vital program, it is a class that is conducted by local county sheriff's departments in conjunction with local elementary schools. The purpose of the class is to teach kids about the dangers of using drugs, alcoholic beverages, and tobacco products; especially cigarettes. Through reading,writing and hands on learning, the kids get a good dose of reality into the world of tobacco and substance abuse.

The goal of the class is to instill a sense of respect in the kids for their own bodies, so they will say no to harmful substances that can cause irrepairable damage to their bodies.

Deputy Phelps is our school's DARE officer. In his own words, "If my role in this program can help kids know how to make responsible decisions about their own health and their own bodies then I will have done something meaningful with my life."

I was thinking about this and how it relates to a Biblical view of life. Paul wrote, in his letter to the church at Philippi,

And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise. (Philippians 4:8) NLT

It certainly is a true, honorable, right, pure, lovely, and admirable thing to teach our children about the realities that exist around them in their everday lives. It is sobering to think that children as young as 5 0r 6 years of age are already experimenting with harmful substances. I have learned to appreciate men like Deputy Phelps who see the value of educating children to make good decisions that go beyond the four walls of their elementary school. Life can be a dangerous journey, but with men like this, the ride will have less bumps in the road.

Indeed, it was a sweet victory, and I was savoring the moment as my son and his classmates each received their completion certificates. It is reassuring to me to know that my son and his classmates have a little more knowledge to help them through this life.

My prayer is that this new found knowledge will arm them against the drug dealers they will, at some point, face as they move on to middle school, and then on to high school. It is certainly an excellent and praiseworthy goal to aim for.