Posted by: Jim Black | June 1, 2010

Why I love Riverside Christian Academy

People choose schools for different reasons… some for the opportunities to play sports… some for the opportunity to excel in academics.  But there are other reasons, too!  The following essay by one of my senior girls at RCA illustrates why I love Riverside Christian Academy and why I’m so proud not only to send my kids there, but also to teach Bible there.  This was written as a part of a senior paper, the final project required for graduation from RCA.  It is supposed to be a “Philosophy of life” kind of paper.  Here’s what she wrote:

May 12, 2001

    “How God has changed me through RCA”

 I thank God that He directed my path to Riverside Christian Academy! I believe that I have truly been changed   by it and that it has truly altered my future.  First I will discuss my SHAPE. 

Spiritual gifts. My first would (from the studies) be compassion. I feel deeply sorry for people even if I don’t know them. My mother says I have “sucker” written across my forehead when it comes to homeless people. Steven has had to forbid me for picking up sad looking hitch hikers.  I used to have wet dog/cat food in my trunk so I could give poor starving animal’s food.

   My second would be Mercy; I can easily look over the faults in people and see the good in them. This tends to get me in a bad position when I really care for some one who is really self-destructive. When I come home upset about something some one has done to me and tells mom it seems like I always get over it before she does.

 Heart. Well I am sure that everyone in the school by now knows that I love art. That is one thing I think I am just naturally good at. One thing most people probably don’t know is that I love animals too! I thought through most of my childhood I was going to be a vet. I probably still would be if it hadn’t been for Mrs. Jones’ biology classes to be honest.  Now I think I will be an art teacher.

 Abilities. Art and I and socially gifted. My mom says I have evil gifts to get my way because I pull the dumb blonde’ act a little to well but I think she is just a sucker. Just Kidding

 Personality. I am a giving person. I make my mom mad some times because some times I will just give away every thing I have in my pockets if some one needs it. She was really mad when I gave my whole paycheck to one of the girls at McDonald’s because she was about to lose her house and her husband go to jail. Everyone laughs at me because I will throw all my change on the ground at Wal-Mart. There is a really old Poor man that looks for change out there every morning.

 Experiences. Well I have quite I few to go by really. The first would be the divorce of my Parents when I was 6. This really affected my mother and this is when we really stopped going to church I think. I guess I kind of had to sort of grow up at a young age. My dad was in an out at the age of 7/8 and he married Kim. I remember this is when I really started to act out. When I was 12, I was accepted in to Barbazon and I think that’s when my opinion of girls really went down the toilet. I really started to get that nasty little attitude like you see off mean girls. When I got in to Riverside I could see a huge difference in my life. I cleaned up my mouth and I started to get a little better with the grades. A year into Riverside my father’s drug addiction was at an all time high and I had to tell him I wasn’t going to talk to him any more until he cleaned it up. That was a hard time in my life. He still hasn’t cleaned it up though. When I got baptized, I really turned it around.

  Riverside has had such a profound difference on my life I don’t like to think what I would have been if I hadn’t gone. Every friend I used to have at my old house that I still talk to has fallen in to drugs and sex. That scares me. I have done so many things through RCA. Spiritual Emphasis Day is some thing the impresses me every year. Mrs. K got me in to going to church. She is the reason my whole family goes now.  We went to pack peaches. When the chorus went to go sing at the nursing homes, that really helped.  Just hearing chapel ever morning is good for us. If I didn’t go to Riverside I don’t know if I would have a Christian boy friend or a Christian relationship. Now I go to his church.  The Mission trip we went on last summer will be with me for the rest of my life. There’s a difference here and the there, but their faith is so strong!  The pastor is coming up here for the summer and I am really excited!  The area we stayed at was kind of “dodgy”. It was a bad part of town. We went door knocking and we spread the word of God. It was real rewarding and at times scary. I also help run Vacation Bible School every summer and that are always of fun. I get to paint all the murals and posters for the booths and activities!

 Through all these experiences I have learned so much about God.  First would be that he is way to big for us to ever comprehend! I love looking at the stars and thinking that God is billions beyond that. He created the heavens and the earth just because he love us. If that doesn’t stir you then you need to check your self.  I love knowing that nothing is an accident and that everything in life is there for some reason.  When I get stuck in traffic or my car breaks down it helps me to have that kind of mind set “ this must have happened for a reason”. It makes me look at trails not with hate or despair but a challenge to show Gods grace!

 The love and grace of God has given me a purpose in life, no longer do I wander aimlessly but I strive for a goal, work for the cause. The thought that the creator of the universe would care anything about me blows my mine, and that he gave his one and only son to take my place is beyond me. It feels me with a sort of fear ans awe I guess is the right word. That God would love me that much when I can’t think of a single person I would be willing my son to die for.  Without Riverside’s influence in my life I don’t know if I every would have found these things that give me such peace now.

 I feel that I was kinda picked from my old life and put in this one and I am so happy for the chance. I can’t wait to see what God has for me and to take up his challenges.

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