What is Love? Sacrifice

“What is love?”

We asked the students during Wednesday morning chapel.  They answered compassion, affection, protection… One young elementary student answered “living Jesus.”  Such an amazing answer to start the morning.

Are you living Jesus?

There is always one word that goes hand-in-hand with Love.  That word is Sacrifice.  Tell me about anyone who loves you and I’ll show you their sacrifice.  Tell me about someone/something you love and I’ll show you your sacrifice.

Luke Chapter 18:

Once a religious leader asked Jesus this question: “Good Teacher, what should I do to inherit eternal life?”

“Why do you call me good?” Jesus asked him. “Only God is truly good. But to answer your question, you know the commandments: ‘You must not commit adultery. You must not murder. You must not steal. You must not testify falsely. Honor your father and mother.’”

The man replied, “I’ve obeyed all these commandments since I was young.”

When Jesus heard his answer, he said, “There is still one thing you haven’t done. Sell all your possessions and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”

But when the man heard this he became very sad, for he was very rich.

When Jesus saw this, he said, “How hard it is for the rich to enter the Kingdom of God! In fact, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the Kingdom of God!”

Those who heard this said, “Then who in the world can be saved?”

He replied, “What is impossible for people is possible with God.”

Peter said, “We’ve left our homes to follow you.”

“Yes,” Jesus replied, “and I assure you that everyone who has given up house or wife or brothers or parents or children, for the sake of the Kingdom of God,will be repaid many times over in this life, and will have eternal life in the world to come.”

The thing most important to the rich man, he still had not nor was willing to sacrifice.  If you really love someone, how much are you willing to give?  As adults, one of the hardest things to give up is pride.  As children, obedience.  How you act reflects on your family, both blood and spiritual.  To the children, we told them, if you really love your parents, to respect your classmates.  What we do and how we act, often will affect and reflect the ones we love the most.

Are you willing to give away, to sacrifice, the thing you value most to show love to your Father in Heaven?

Chapel: Theme Love

Chapel Theme Love

Every week we do Wednesday chapel in the morning. Our directors believe chapel to be the most important time of the week because it is the time we are able to focus on learning more about God. What is the most important thing, then, in God’s eyes? Is it obedience? Patience? Jesus stated the answer was Love. Consider this: In the English language there different types of love. Is loving food the same kind of love as loving God or a person? Clearly not. Enjoying the taste of food is a different from putting an individual first before your own needs.

The law can be summed up into two commands: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.” Matthew 22:37 – 40. Jesus considers love the most important thing, but that doesn’t mean love is easy. Love is to put someone else’s needs before your own. We should not only love those who loved us first or love us back, it also means to our enemies. Jesus loved even those who wanted him dead on the cross. What an example to follow!

From this day onward, Love is the theme of the school year. Remember this theme. Remember to love as you go about your day in class and at home.

Who do you love?

Tax Free Week School Supply List!

Tax Free Week Osceola Christian Preparatory School

For those who are not aware, this week, which began on the 7th of August and ends this Sunday, August 16th, is Tax Free Week! According to Florida’s Department of Revenue, certain items needed for school will be tax free.

Some of the items include:

Clothing, footwear, and certain accessories
Selling for $100 or less per item
School supplies
Selling $15 or less per item
Computers and certain computer accessories
The FIRST $750 of the sales price

Take advantage of this tax free week to save on school supplies needed for the upcoming school year.

Below are a list of tax-exempt items to consider when preparing for the new school year:

Clothes ($100 or less per item):

- Accessories: barrettes, bobby pins, ponytail holders, handbags, wallets, ties
- Backpacks & book bags
- Belts
- Pants (jeans, khakis, slacks, etc.)
- Shoes (athletic shoes included)
- Uniforms (work, school, and athletic)

School Supply ($15 or less per item):

- Binders
- Calculators
- Colored pencils
- Construction paper
- Crayons
- Erasers
- Folders
- Highlighters
- Lunch boxes
- Markets
- Notebooks
- Pencils (including mechanical, refills, and color)
- Pens (including felt, ballpoint, fountain, etc.)
- Rulers
- Scissors

Computer items (First $750 is exempt):

- Computers for noncommercial/home/personal use (includes desktops, laptops, and tablets)
- Data storage devices (Including flash/jump/thump drives)
- Electronic book readers
- Headphones
- Ink/Printer cartridges
- Mice
- Printers/Scanners
- Software (including antivirus, educational, financial, and word processing)

View a more detailed list of tax-exempt supplies!

Provided by the Department of Revenue.

FISH CATCHING A MAN

Most people understand the concept of a man catching a fish, however we are going to look at the concept of a fish catching a man.

One of the issues our society faces today is how the enemy, Satan, is influencing and attacking the young people. Samuel, a man of God, who was only 7 when he began serving the Lord shows you can never be too young to be a witness for Him.

“From the lips of children and infants you, Lord, have called forth your praise” – Matthew 21:16

And even though you sinned or faced trials, God will take that pain and bless someone else. He will use you, through your experiences, to witness to someone else.

Many of you may know who Jonah was: a prophet of God. God told Jonah to relay a message to Nineveh, one of the most sinful cities around. Jonah did not want to listen and decided to take a ship and travel the exact opposite direction of Nineveh, because of how evil it was. God saw this and had Jonah thrown off the ship he was traveling on and become devoured by a fish. This is where we see the importance of a fish catching man.

Jonah was trapped inside the belly of the fish for 3 entire days. In that time, Jonah prayed to God. At the end of the three days, God had the fish spit Jonah out on a shore near Nineveh, where God commanded him again to preach to the Ninevites.

What would have taken three days to accomplish, took Jonah only one day, to go through the city and witness to the people. Immediately, the people repented, allowing God to spare them.  Jonah was upset at God’s decision because we wanted to see them pay for the sins they committed. But he failed to remember God had spared Jonah from drowning in the sea for disobeying God’s command.

What we have learned is that we’ve all been on that wide road. God turned us around. We have been on the path of destruction just as Ninevites had, but now we have the information that can save someone.

Why keep this information to yourself? Do not be like Jonah in that he tried to run away from the opportunity to save the city of Nineveh. Be the bold witness of Christ and go forth to spread the Good News!

Fitting In: The Story of the Eagle and the Chicken.

This week in Wednesday Morning Chapel, Principle Batiste talked on one of troubles many face in society: Fitting In.

Fitting in – Feeling accepted in a group is a common problem that many of today’s youth face.  The story of the Eagle and the Chicken helps us better understand the idea of not fitting in.

There was a mother Eagle on the side of a mountain taking care of its babies.  The mother eagle took flight in search of food for its children.  One of the baby Eagles, not old enough to fly became curious and crawled out of the nest.  It fell out the nest and tumbled down the mountain, flipping and turning, until it finally reached the ground.  Disoriented, the poor baby eagle was found by a local farmer and placed among a group of chickens where it began to grow up.  Never learning how to fly, the Eagle grew up with the other chicks and adopted their ways. Its majestic beak scratched at the dirt and its long wings dragged along the ground getting soiled in the dirt.

As time went on, the eagle started noticing the differences between and at the other chickens. The eagle was not built to live on the ground. One day, it looks up and notices other majestic eagles in the sky. He realizes where it was meant to be and flaps its large valiant wings. Eventually, the eagle takes flight and joins the other eagles in the sky, happy because it found its rightful place in the sky.

The story of the Eagle and the Chicken is what it means be a child of God.  We do not fit in to a society without God.  We were meant to be God’s children with our wings soaring like eagles in the sky, living the life God meant for us.  Where are you at in your life today?  God’s Word will do what it set out to do in your life.  Be confident and faithful and do what God set out for you to do.

“But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” – Isaiah 40:31

4 Inexpensive Ways to Stay Cool with Your Family Over the Summer

Summers can be hot, but Florida summers are especially hot!

For those enjoying summer break, spend some time with your family!  Osceola Christian Preparatory School has a few things you can do over the summer with your family without having to spend a fortune.

Find a day to go to the beach. Take advantage of only having that one to two hour drive to either Florida beach coast.  Pack up some sandwiches and head out for some fun in the Sun!  All you need to cover the cost is the gas or bus expenses to get to the beach.  Head out in the early morning, then come back in the evening to fill up the day.

Have a pool day.  If the beach is still not an option, due to the distance, take a day to cool off in the community pool if there is one available in your area.

Parks! We don’t mean amusement parks, but ones with big grassy areas and trees!  Central Florida has plenty of local parks around that people can go out and enjoy a sport or have a walk. Bring a ball or Frisbee and have a picnic in the shade!

Backyard water fight!  Whether in your backyard or out in the community playground, a water fight is a great way to stay cool with your family.  Pull out the super soakers, soggy dodge balls, and water balloons!  There are games such as water balloon dodge ball, water duck-duck-goose (Where instead of tagging the person who calls you a goose, you have to get them wet with a water balloon.), and many other games with a staying-cool twist.

Share this post so others can see the ideas!  Have any other ideas you would like to share with other families?  Leave a comment below. 🙂

Love Your Enemies

In chapel, we learned a lesson on loving our enemies.

It is easy to love those who love us in return. However, many of us find loving people we do not like as a difficult thing to do. While it is difficult, Jesus has instructed us to love others, even those who do us wrong.

Read the passage from Luke below to learn what the Bible says about loving your enemies:

Luke 6: 27-36 – “But to you who are listening I say: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. If someone slaps you on one cheek, turn to them the other also. If someone takes your coat, do not withhold your shirt from them. Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. Do to others as you would have them do to you.

If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners do that. And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, expecting to be repaid in full. But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.”

As difficult as it is, my task for you this week is to show love towards your enemies just as Jesus instructed. Have a blessed week and stay tuned for more Bible lessons from Wednesday morning chapel!

You Graduated! Now What?

Congratulations!

You graduated!  Now what?  Many of you will be heading off to college or pursuing a trade.  Many of you may go straight into the workforce.  Either way, we have a few words of advice for whatever your path may be.

Find your Big picture and determine the steps to get there.

A good way to strive for continuing success to have a plan. Find that final goal you are wanting to strive toward.  Whether it be start a business or finding a career in the science field.  What are the smaller steps you need to take? Do research to learn what steps others have taken to accomplish that goal.

Do Your Best!

It is very easy to get into a slump and only do just enough.  Because many people tend to do just enough to get by, if you do your best, you will easily stand out from the crowd.

Be Patient & Have Faith.

Not everything will come easy. Many obstacles will come your way. And often you will make mistakes, but rest assured God has a plan for you. Many of the trials you will face are there to prepare you for His ultimate Will.

[“’For I know the plans I have for you,’ says the LORD. ‘They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.’” – Jeremiah 29:11]

5 Practical Study Tips

Top 5 Practical Study Tips

Whether it is a K-12 school or pursuing a degree, studying is an important part of success.
Here are five practical study times that will help you as you go through school:

Find a set location and time to study EVERY DAY

Pick a time you know you can be available to study without distractions, whether early in the morning before school, or in the evening before you go to bed, but before you are tired. Your location should be reasonably quiet without distractions. Silence your phone and put it away! While you are chatting with your friends or scrolling through Facebook, you’ll be surprised how quickly time passes. That one hour study time may only end up being ten to fifteen minutes of study time if you are not careful.

Repetition! Repetition! Repetition!

The trite saying, “Practice makes perfect” has never been more relevant. For most subjects, repetition is a critical part in retaining material. Repetition is especially critical for math. The more you work out, the stronger you’ll be; the more mathematical drills you do, the easier it will be. And repetition does not mean repeat the material five times five hours before the exam, it means throughout the entire school semester, practice the material.

Online tools and resources

Thankfully, there are many free sites and applications available to students to help them study. Such tools include video tutorials, online flashcards, other perspectives on similar problems, and hundreds of other resources.

Don’t be afraid to ask questions

If you don’t understand something, find someone who does. At Osceola Christian Preparatory School, we have teachers and tutors at your disposal to help you better comprehend any subjects you may be having troubles understanding.

Take a break

Don’t overexert yourself. A healthy body equals a healthy mind. One of the best ways to reenergize the brain is to go out and do physical activities. This will help you stay awake and freshen your mind if you feel stumped. Another option is taking a 5-10 minute nap. Don’t take too long a nap, however, or you’ll feel the dreaded groggy after-affects that will prevent you from studying at your utmost ability.

Did You Know? Ampersand

Did you know the ampersand was once part of the English alphabet?

In the early to mid 1800’s, schools would include “&” as the 27th letter of the alphabet. Examples can be seen in M. B. Moore’s 1863 book, The Dixie Primer, for the Little Folks.

The original name of the word, however, was “and” – not “ampersand.” Students would recite the alphabet and finish with “X, Y, Z, and per se and.” The meaning of “per se” is “by itself” in Latin.  Eventually, “and per se and” was shortened to ampersand.

However, “&” existed long before ampersand, about 1,500 years before. Romans would record Latin in cursive. When they wrote “et,” they would often combine the letters, ultimately leading to the eventual formation of &. If you ever see &c, instead of etc. used, you will have a better understanding why and its origin.

The more you know…

Share with your friends and let them know!