Two years ago today, January 23, 2020, Chapel Hill Christian Academy officially became a non-profit organization with the State of Tennessee!
At that point, God had been working on my heart for about 6 months through intentionally praying and planning for this vision He gave me for a Christ-centered, faith based and spirit filled education. A place where children could learn with their Bibles open and meet with him each morning. I can remember sitting at my kitchen table, completing the applications for our school, not knowing what was to come but I was so incredible excited and scared. In January of 2020, God gave me the courage I needed to fully surrender over my plans of what I thought my career would look like, but I had no idea He was preparing me for something so much more than a career. He was preparing a different way of thinking about our day-to-day life, a different way of thinking about the partnership between parents and school, a different way of thinking about how we nurture and grow students, how we pour into teachers professionally and spiritually...He was preparing a place that you and I would need for our families and our children- we just didn’t know it yet.
He took one step of obedience and multiplied that, called teachers, staff, and families together and grew it into our Chapel Hill Family. Looking back, those months of building the school seem like such an adventure. Taking it one day at a time and moving forward with what needed to be done in order to start our school- create a logo, pick out colors, meet with TN Department of Education, build the website, share the vision, interview teachers, meet with families, write bylaws and put a Board together, pick out our curriculum and find a school location… it seemed like it may have been an impossible task (and many people told me it was) especially when news of the pandemic began to spread. But I wasn't alone and it was no surprise to Him.
I think back to the timing of starting the school- sometimes I ask myself would I have said yes if the pandemic had already started? Would I have taken that leap of faith if I knew what was to come? Isn't God's timing so good? But somehow, the Lord gave me such peace in trusting Him over the opinions of man, over what was happening in the world around me. It wasn’t all butterflies and rainbows, there would be extremely hard days to come- days when I thought I was such a failure to the Lord and my family, I questioned resigning from my job and if I jumped ahead of the Lord. It was a journey of highs and lows, and still is today, but He walked with me through all of that, through the moments of celebration and excitement, feeling like we were on top of the world and the days I felt like hiding and embarrassed at what I thought I could do.
What I knew about God would become much bigger than what I knew about the future. I had to make decisions based on the goodness of God and move forward just believing with everything in me, that He wouldn’t ask me to do something he’s not going to provide for.
He provided by sending some of our very first teachers- their heart felt called and said YES! He provided by sending you- our first families to enroll their children...even when we didn’t have a building yet! He provided for us when he surrounded the school with people who believed in the mission and wanted to help see this happen too. He provided for us when he opened the doors to Living Hope Church and First Baptist Church to launch our school. He provided for us even in the midst of a pandemic and dark time, creating something so beautiful for our families. I believe wholeheartedly that He will do it again. Here we are just two years later planning for an additional campus for our middle school students with Hilldale Baptist, meeting new families that have applied and feel called to CHCA for our 3rd year, looking for land and sketching out our dream PK-12th grade campus.
As we celebrate CHCA’s 2nd Birthday, I want to say thank you. Thank you for believing in this school, in our mission, in what God is doing through our school for our children, for our families and for our community. He is creating something so much bigger than you and I, something that will last past our lifetimes. God is creating a school that will impact our children’s future and change the next generation.
I have had the opportunity to hear so many of your sweet stories of how God brought Chapel Hill to fruition for your family. Stories how of not only did you want a school like this for your children, but the impact it has had on you as the parents too. Think about this...How great is the Lord’s love for you. Really! That He knew your heart so intimately that He created a place to come and learn or to teach alongside Him. Sometimes when I am standing in the back during Chapel or walking down the halls looking inside each classroom, I think about how different it would be without Chapel Hill. My heart fills with so much gratitude as I see our students growing and learning, laughing with one another, or when I hear our students pray and tell their Jesus how much they love school and how they don't know where they would be if it weren't for Chapel Hill. That's powerful.
How crazy lucky are we to be a part of this story? I am so incredibly grateful and in awe. CHCA, ready yourself, for tomorrow the Lord will do wonders among you.
Visit our blog to read more details about the creation and journey of launching Chapel Hill! You can also look forward to hearing more stories from teachers and parents on how they knew God was calling them to CHCA!
Happy Birthday, Chapel Hill! May there be many, many more to come.