Happy 40th!

Elizabeth Porter, Secondary Teacher

I am sure that you have heard the phrase ‘life begins at 40’. More recently I heard that ‘sixty is the new forty’. This could be because people have a longer average life-span than they did in the past, or perhaps financial pressures and responsibilities mean we need to work until we are older. One theory I read is that 40 year olds fear death, but at 60, they warm up to it. I seriously doubt that! I am reminded once again of the amount of unwise material on the internet…

Obviously there has been a lot of rain this year; Sydney reached its average annual rainfall on April 7. Lately I actually feel surprised if we have a full day of sunshine, and I am thankful that God did not choose me to be Mrs Noah. During the Genesis Flood it rained for 40 days and 40 nights. It might have felt that long for us too, but it actually didn’t rain continuously for 40 consecutive days.

40 is a special number. A 40th birthday is an occasion to be celebrated. A 40th Wedding Anniversary is a milestone; a Ruby Anniversary. In the Bible, the number 40 has special significance. Moses stayed on Mt Sinai in worship of the Lord 40 days and 40 nights, the Israelites wandered in the desert for 40 years, Eli, Saul, Joash, David and Solomon each led God’s people for 40 years, Nineveh had 40 days’ warning to turn to God, Jesus fasted 40 days and 40 nights before He was tempted by the devil, Jesus appeared to people after his death and resurrection for 40 days, before He ascended. A generation is also represented by 40 years, and the Bible was written down by 40 different people. It’s a special number. What a wonderful blessing that Kuyper Christian School can now celebrate its 40 years!

Staff and students have been considering 40 things for which we can thank and praise God. We could all probably think of 400 things each day if we had time in our lifestyles to stop and contemplate this. As there are roughly 40 weeks of school in a year, we are focusing on one thing to thank and praise God for each week. So far, we have thanked God for our pioneers who started our school, then those parents and friends who kept it going, and for our current students, parents and carers. We have thanked God for the inspiring person that Abraham Kuyper was, and we have considered our Mission Statement and the blessing of this school community. Naturally we finished Term 1 by considering Easter. This term we are focusing on some aspects of the nature of God and praising Him for who He is. God is holy and faithful. He is love; abounding in grace and mercy. He is just, forgiving, omnipotent, omniscient and omnipresent. In the future, we will continue to thank God for our families, homes, beautiful bush setting, work, daily provision, our future, and especially reconciliation to God through Jesus. We can be sustained in tough times knowing that our future is secure in Jesus. We can look forward to His return and enjoy His presence with us each day. There is always something we can be thankful for!

You may recall U2’s song, ’40’, based on Psalm 40.

I waited patiently for the Lord;
He turned to me and heard my cry.
He lifted me out of the slimy pit,
out of the mud and mire;
He set my feet on a rock
and gave me a firm place to stand.
He put a new song in my mouth,
a hymn of praise to our God…
Blessed is the man
who makes the Lord his trust.

Psalm 40:1-4

People in our local area have been through a lot, especially in the last two and a half years. If you are going through a tough time at the moment, share with others in our Kuyper community so that we can support and pray for you. We pray you may be encouraged by the words of Psalm 40. The Lord cares for you and rescues you. He sets your feet on the rock. May you know His blessings this week.

Please join us in celebrating our 40 years; thanking and praise God for who He is and the blessings He has given us, including our school community!

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