Getting to know our Staff and Parent: Rev. Stephen Farish
What brought you to Christian education?
SF: After 23 years of pastoral ministry, it was clearly the Lord who brought me to Christian education in general and to Christian Heritage Academy in particular. The circumstances had the fingerprints of His providence on them.
What Class / Age or Subject do you teach?
SF: It is my joy to teach 12th, 11th, and 8th grade Boys’ Bible and 8th grade Social Studies.
How did God prepare you for this role?
SF: God never wastes anything He does. The 8th grade year is the year we focus on the U.S. Constitution in Social Studies, and many years ago God providentially put me in law school, not least of all to study Constitutional Law, because He knew that some 30 years later, I needed to be prepared to teach the Constitution here. For the Bible courses the Lord has prepared me through many years of preaching and teaching and through the opportunity to sit under some of the best Bible teachers in the world at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School.
How do you prepare yourself spiritually?
SF: The Lord prepares me spiritually through my daily personal times of prayer and Bible study and through the encouragement of the saints involved as faculty, staff, parents, and students at CHA. Some years ago, when I first started serving as a Board member for the school, the Lord one morning in prayer impressed on my heart the thought that I would never do anything as a Board member that would hurt in any way one of the precious children the Lord had brought to CHA. That prayer remains now that I am a teacher, and every day I also ask the Lord for the grace to live before the students for His glory (1 Corinthians 10:31), teaching and living before them in such a way that He in His grace might use me to help mold the students to be “oaks of righteousness” (Isaiah 61:3).
How have you seen Christian education make an impact on your own children or family?
SF: My wife Robin and I are entering our 18th year as CHA parents. We cannot possibly overestimate the impact the teachers and staff at this school have had on our four children—by the grace of God. Years ago the Lord gave me the picture of the spiritual and intellectual growth of our children as being like a three-legged stool. One leg—the most important one—was our parental training of our kids in the discipline and instruction of the Lord (Ephesians 6:4). The second leg was the church and its ministry of teaching our children the word of God. The third leg of that stool was Christian education, specifically, the high-quality, God-centered, Bible-saturated Christian education our children were receiving at CHA. The Lord has used the education our children did receive and are receiving at CHA to “cement” their faith in Him and their walk in His ways.
What do you want your classroom to be for your students?
SF: The Protestant Reformers taught that Christians live all spheres of their lives “coram Deo,” that is, before the face of God. My desire is that the students would sense the manifest presence of God in our classroom, even if the discussion concerns the role of the judiciary under Article III of the Constitution. My goal is that the students, by the grace of God, would come to know God better than they know anything and would come to desire God more than they would desire anything. I also love lots of class discussion!
What is the one thing you want your students to remember about you by in 25 years?
SF: If the Lord enabled the students to remember me in 25 years, I suppose it would have to be with the wonderful words of the Apostle Paul in 2 Timothy 4:7: By the grace of God alone, Mr. Farish fought the good fight; he finished the race; he kept the faith.
Do you have a Teacher or Student Story you would like to share?
Contact Mrs. Jenny Lo.