According to Simon Sinek (2011), great leaders and organizations have one thing in common that distinguishes them from their counterparts. It is this: their entire mission, company, or product begins with the WHY. It doesn’t start with what they do or how they do it. Instead, the focus from the beginning is on the purpose, belief, and sense of calling that drives what they do. This is what makes all the difference.
Think about the application of this idea to Christian education today. Certainly, the “what” of Christian education is important and significant: high quality academics, Bible classes, chapels, supportive Christian parents, etc. These things distinguish us from other types of education. “How” we do this is also important: maintaining lower student-teacher ratios, inviting relevant and captivating chapel speakers, hiring qualified teachers who follow Christ utilizing Bible-based curriculums, etc. But all of these elements are only practical applications of what truly sets us apart. And that is our WHY! The purpose at the heart of Christian education is to develop passionate Christ-followers who are equipped to live out their own calling and purpose in the context of how God has uniquely made them so that they will engage the world around them for the cause of Christ.
All of this brings me to the main focus for which God has created me in terms of my vocation, which is to provide leadership and direction as I steward the High School Program of the Ron Blue Institute. No doubt, what we do is important. We provide high quality curriculum for high school students that focuses on life calling, personal finance, and leadership. We do that by building strong partnerships with Christian schools in the U.S. and internationally, and by providing quality service and support for our partner schools. But it is the WHY that truly motivates me. Our WHY is that individual students will be transformed and challenged to become true stewards of all that God has given them – their unique calling, their financial resources, and their opportunities for influence. We exist to inspire high school students so that they will live with confidence, identify their calling, find wisdom in finances, and engage the culture. What is your WHY?
CACE invites you to join Ron Blue and Dr. Phil Gelatt in our most recent webinar: Helping High School Students THINK Biblically about Money.
Dr. Phil Gelatt is the Director of High School Program for the Ron Blue Institute for Financial Planning. Phil brings over 35 years of Christian education experience as a teacher, coach, principal and school head. He is passionate for Christian education and has experience and expertise in the areas of discipleship, student development, dual enrollment programing, mission statement creation and development, school culture, and life calling and leadership. Phil holds an EdD. in Organizational Leadership from Indiana Wesleyan University.