Pillar College Black History Month Honoring Our Educators
BIO: Educator, Scholar, Clergy, Writer
I am a first-generation college student whose parents did not finish high school but through God’s grace, diligence and hard work, I have been blessed to obtain multiple doctoral degrees.
Church and society have always been in a dialectic struggle. This struggle is exacerbated, sometimes, in Christ-centered Christian education. Learners with prophetic insight will lovingly but authoritatively differentiate between a liberal agenda that deviates from Christ-centered practices and an agenda embedded in biblical truth. Christian learners who are rooted in Christian love, faith, and Bible-centered principles, those who speak God’s truth to the social dis-ease of oppression, are not welcomed at the King’s table (certain political venues). Christian learners who will become tomorrow’s leaders are called to prophetic engagement and to borrow a phrase from David Schroeder, a “selfless spirit of servanthood.” They are not called to be “of the world” but definitely to be “in the world” (NIV, John 17. 16ff). Christian higher education is the site for the churches and the Christian community’s liaison with the intellectual project of society. Pillar generates this potential because it presents this prophetic and social possibility to our students.
Students are trained to become transformational leaders, to gain an education that synergizes their discipline with real-world truths that make learning relevant. This is embedded in what Mahalia Jackson, a Civil Rights advocate sung, “If I can help somebody along the way, then my living shall not be in vain.” There is much work to be done, but there is potential here at Pillar for God to do great things in the lives of our students, in our programs, and all who labor here. As Martin Luther King Jr said to Morehouse College in 1948, “We must remember that intelligence is not enough. Intelligence plus character- that is the goal of true education. The complete education gives one not only the power of concentration but worthy objectives upon which to concentrate. The broad education will, therefore, transmit to one not only the accumulated knowledge of the race but also the accumulated experience of social living.”
All in all, as a faculty member, Pillar provides me an opportunity to empower and enlighten my students and to make learning impactful and relevant. Furthermore, I am situated as a professor to partner with Pillar College in the great enterprise of producing transformational leaders- leaders like Martin Luther King and other Civil Rights leaders, who make a difference.