Entrance Exam - The Shoreline Church
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Entrance Exam

Entrance Exam

What would you do for your children? Better yet…what wouldn’t you do for your child? It is normal to think about sacrificing and providing for our children, but we do not always think about how far we should go for our children.

The Hollywood and sports worlds collided very recently with a massive investigation into a case about university admissions fraud. Multiple stars of the entertainment world have been implicated in illegal efforts to ensure their children would get into prestigious universities. They paid hundreds of thousands of dollars to bribe their child’s way into schools: Yale, USC, Stanford, and Georgetown, to name a few. 

Payments of up to $6.5M have gone to grant acceptance to students who could not get in on their own merits. “Operation Varsity Blues” (you cannot make this stuff up) relied upon college coaches to lie about a student’s ability to play a sport to get them admitted. Most of these students were not athletes or certainly not good enough to compete in college sports, but no one followed up once they were admitted. They also paid other people to take entrance exams to establish acceptable scores.

Parents like actresses Felicity Hoffman and Lori Loughlin are implicated in the scandal and more will follow. Coaches and athletic department employees are being fired as well as the officials in charge of giving ACT and SAT exams. The fraud and conspiracy charges are extensive.

These parents crossed the line to help their children and broke the law. While I initially thought this was about a parent’s love for a child, it turns out some of the motivation was the glory attached to where their child went to college. The motivation was partly the status the parent received for the accomplishment of raising such an accomplished child. Yuck!

Where did they get this idea, you might wonder. They could have gotten the idea from the Bible. While God did NOT have to break any laws, He did a similar thing for us. God saw us for who we were—we didn’t measure up nor will we ever measure up. God knew what we needed, and God got involved to ensure we had every opportunity possible to reach our potential.

Our Heavenly Father sent Jesus to get us into the most exclusive institution there is: heaven. Whether we want to admit it or not, God’s home is not inclusive; you either follow Jesus or you do not. Heaven is a members only destination. Unlike what you and I may have experienced when we tried to get into college, we cannot get in on our merits. More is needed.

To gain access to heaven, we cannot bribe our way through those pearly gates. We cannot do enough good deeds. We cannot know enough of the Bible to pass heaven’s entrance exam. We have to rely on our Heavenly Father’s involvement. He provided a way to get in…it was Jesus. Jesus gives us access to the only place we need to be.

As we move through the season of Lent, I pray we are finding ways to appreciate what Jesus has done for us. As smart and as accomplished as we may be, we still need Him to get us into heaven. I hope we never take Jesus, or what He has done for us, for granted. 

Blessings to you,

Joe

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