‘We found God’: How the opportunity for Christian education led my family from atheism to Jesus

Wikipedia states that divine intervention is an event that occurs when a deity, God, becomes actively involved in changing some situation in human affairs. This couldn’t be truer for our…

Wikipedia states that divine intervention is an event that occurs when a deity, God, becomes actively involved in changing some situation in human affairs. This couldn’t be truer for our family’s education journey.

We are the Pritchard family, and this is our second year attending a Christian school in Missouri. So many little moments aligned leading us to what turned out to be the absolute best situation for our entire family: We found God.

Growing up, neither my husband nor I had any type of religion or spirituality influence from our families.  We attended church services and events with friends and schoolmates occasionally, but we were very unfamiliar with God and all his glory.

Both my husband and I attended public schools our whole upbringing, but we both knew we wanted to offer our children more.  

I’ll be the first to admit that I was very adamant that I did not want religion included in their primary education at all. My husband was much more open to it, and thankfully I came around. 

I called so many schools and had so many enrollment, deposit, tuition and waitlist conversations. It was hard to even keep all the information straight and relay it to my husband. 

Public schools in our area were actively wrestling with Covid policies, vaccine mandates and hybrid virtual teaching situations, all of which we wanted absolutely no part of, especially for kindergarten. 

During our education selection journey, my husband and I agreed to have him switch careers when an opportunity presented itself. We knew the new position would have a substantial financial setback for the first few years.  

Although we did not know it, God was working on our behalf.  

Then a local Christian school called me to tell me a spot had opened for kindergarten. I politely declined and told said we had recently enrolled in another school and to take us off the list. 

Shortly after that, the school we had enrolled in held an open house and we were elated to attend and check out their new, larger location. It was a wonderful open house, and I was so reassured of our decision to attend that school.  

During that open house, one of the creators of the school and I were talking about the financial impact of the job change and she mentioned the MOScholars program to me.  

That was the very first time I had heard of Missouri’s ESA program. She didn’t know much about the program but told me to investigate it for possible tuition assistance.  

After all that happened, I kept having little doubts and I was second guessing the school we had enrolled in – really, for no valid reasons, just a feeling. I still really loved the school and what they offered, but something just felt off to me.  

So I called the other school back and asked if there was any way we could get back on the waitlist.  

I think I made that phone call in early to mid-May. He should have laughed me off the phone because I had already passed up a spot and it was only a few months until school was starting. I knew our chances were so slim, but I had to try.  

He did try to reassure me that a lot of things can change over the summer with enrollment, but also to not get my hopes up.  

A couple of weeks went by, and the school called me again! I will never forget the conversation. 

I was told a spot had opened and it was ours if we wanted it. I immediately told him we wanted the spot! I knew this opportunity was meant to happen for us and I felt so certain about it, no matter what it took.  

We toured a few days later and I brought up the possibility of scholarships or tuition assistance during that time. He informed us that all their in-house funds had been spoken for already, but we could qualify for the MO Scholars program.  

The tour at the school was so wonderful, so warm, welcoming and personal. We were joking and left smiling from ear to ear. Many of my fears of being unfamiliar with Christianity and potentially not fitting in were put at ease. It truly gave me a sense of peace and so much hope for our children’s educational future. 

During the application process for the scholarship program, I blindly chose the Herzog Foundation as the Educational Assistance Organization (EAO). I really knew nothing about the foundation or which EAO would be the best fit for our needs. I just chose one that applied to our specific city. It was incredibly stressful waiting to find out. When school started, we still did not know whether we would receive any scholarship.  

At this time, I really started seeing God moving in our lives and I just kept focusing on giving all my worries to him. Our family acclimated to the new Christian school culture so effortlessly.  

There were so many encouraging Christians who really loved our child, loved our family, and truly wanted the best for all of us. All the staff were welcoming, encouraging, loving and helped us on our journey to find God. From inviting us to their churches, sharing their personal spiritual journeys, to telling us how our daughter is a natural born Jesus worshipper and that they love watching her praise Him during Chapel.  

We pray to be the family funding scholarships someday.  

Our journey has only just begun, but we now attend church every Sunday, actively read and discuss the Bible, attend small groups and church events. Our kids worship Jesus and it brings me to tears every time I hear them praising Him through song. 

If it weren’t for our Christian school, and for the Herzog Foundation, we wouldn’t have found God.  

We are 1.5 years into Christian education now. Our son started kindergarten this year too, and by the grace of God, he also received the scholarship. 

God is good!