From the Executive Director

Last week on campus, we held the sixth annual Kaleo conference for people who minister to youth. Chap Clark, a vice provost and professor of youth, family, and culture at Fuller Theological Seminary, spoke to us about how mature adults help young people integrate into adult community. He used I Thessalonians 2:11-12 to illustrate his point. In this passage Paul wrote, “For you know that we dealt with each of you as a father deals with his own children, encouraging, comforting and urging you to live lives worthy of God, who calls you into his kingdom and glory.”

It struck me that this is just the right message for George Fox parents as we approach this point in the year. Between mid-January (MLK Day) and mid-March is the longest span of the academic year without a break. Your students have been challenged in the classroom, in the dorm room, and everywhere in between. By now students are exhausted and ready for spring vacation.

When our children are stretched to their limit, they need our support. As parents, we are to encourage and comfort them, and be their greatest fans. We can encourage them to stay on course and get the help they need for the final laps in the race. We can comfort them in their exhaustion by giving a hug, praying with them, or providing perspective. And we can be their biggest fans by listening to what they are thinking about, what is challenging them, and where their hearts are being drawn – and using those opportunities to “urge them to live lives worthy of God …”

It’s an amazing privilege to watch our children become adults. Our kids go through quite a process of growing, stretching, failing, recovering and reframing only to repeat the cycle over and over again. It strikes me that I am on the same cycle on this journey of life! I am so grateful for a loving heavenly Father who encourages and comforts me on my journey, while urging me further and further into his kingdom. I can’t think of a better model for parenting!

If your student is coming home to be with you during spring break, have a great time! If he or she is on the road with an athletic, performing arts, or serve team, know that will we be praying along with you for a safe and amazing experience!

Sheri Philips
Executive Director of University Relations