Christian Value Consultation

We have been working together as a Christian Ethos Group looking at our Christian Values here at school.

We currently have 21 values that we are struggling to remember and would like to reduce this to 6 core values that will drive everything we do here in our school.

We have put together a list of 12 values and have asked children, parents, staff and governors to vote for the 6 they think are most meaningful to our school.

Here are the 12 values and a definition of what they mean.

Love - 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 New International Version (NIV) 4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

Hope -  Christian hope is grounded in the character of God. Often, in the Psalms, the writer says to God: ‘My hope is in you’. It is a hope rooted in the love and faithfulness of God. Hope is not wishful thinking but a firm assurance that God can be relied upon. It does not remove the need for ‘waiting upon the Lord’ but there is underlying confidence that God is a ‘strong rock’ and one whose promises can be trusted. The writer to the Hebrews describes the Christian hope as ‘an anchor for the soul, firm and secure’.

Faith - First, the Bible defines faith as “being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see” (Hebrews 11:1). Thus, in biblical vernacular, faith is a channel of living trust—an assurance—that stretches from man to God. In other words, it is the object of faith that renders faith faithful.

Forgiveness -  Jesus was uncompromising in his command to forgive. Forgive, he said, ‘seventy times seven’ (Matthew 18:21). In other words, forgive and keep on forgiving without limit. Forgiveness was at the heart of everything he did and is at the heart of the Lord’s Prayer.  We forgive because we are forgiven. Paul says: ‘Be compassionate and kind to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.’ (Ephesians 4:32)

Joy & Celebration - Joy is a state of mind and an orientation of the heart. It is a settled state of contentment, confidence and hope. It is something or someone that provides a source of happiness. It appears 88 times in the Old Testament in 22 books; 57 times in the New Testament in 18 books.

Trust –  Trust is the very essence of faith; trust in the God who is trustworthy.Trust is essential to human life and lies at the heart of all relationships. Trust entails vulnerability, putting yourself in others’ hands. We have to trust experts - pilots, dentists, surgeons. Yet, within our society, there often seems to be mutual distrust between people and those responsible for governing them.

Friendship - Trust, feeling comfortable in each other’s company, being able to share joys and sorrows are all features of friendship and these are things of immense value. True friendship enables each person to grow and ensures that the unique individuality of each person is recognised. All this echoes the value placed by God on the preciousness of each person.

Peace -  The Hebrew term for peace, ‘shalom’, has a deep and complex meaning, encompassing much more than simply the absence of hostility or war. Shalom includes ideas of healing and health, wholeness and well-being. It means harmony, stability and security within a community. It refers to relationships based on truth and righteousness, where people flourish because they are nurtured.

Thankfulness -  Songs of thankfulness and praise...’ are at the heart of Christian worship. Thankfulness is directed towards God who gives and sustains life. Seeing the world as God’s creation underpins the way we approach everything in life, seeing it as a gift and not as a right.

Wisdom -  The opposite of wisdom is foolishness, which is a wrong understanding of life. Jesus tells the parable of the Rich Fool (Luke 12:13-21). Although this parable may seem to be mainly about greed and obsession with money, at a deeper level it is about putting our trust or faith in the wrong things. It’s about missing the point; it’s about being a fool. The fool does not realize that his soul is ‘on loan’ from God, who can require it back whenever he likes. The fool thinks that the aim of life is to ‘be happy’ and he thinks that you can gain happiness by doing what you want and be gaining more and more possessions. The wise person recognizes their own limitations, trusts in God and understands that there is more to like than may be seen on the surface.

Endurance -  At its root, endurance is recognition that life is sometimes difficult and painful, and that it is important not to give up in the face of adversity.

Compassion -  ‘Compassion’ and ‘sympathy’ have much in common and both are stronger in meaning than simply ‘feeling sorry for’ someone.  Compassion requires an act of imagination and humility to share in the lives of others. Notice the qualities that Paul links together. He says ‘clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.’ (Colossians 3:12)

You can find more information on the Christian Values for school website: http://www.christianvalues4schools.org.uk/

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