Some gifts you can’t repay

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I recently posted this (with a few edits) on a BJU “Survivors” discussion group on Facebook.  After reading through my post, I decided I ought to publish it more broadly.

I am still amazed, when I think back to my BJU days, that I had only a very few “not so good” professors.

I took classes in Bible, Greek, theology, Hebrew, music, science, English, art, speech, anthropology, linguistics, literature, history, philosophy, education, psychology …. and time after time, I had incredible teachers who LOVED their students and cared deeply about their subjects.

For all the things I wish BJU would change, I maintain that the University has an *incredible* faculty (and staff) — and I point that out to every non-BJU person I meet.

(Gotta have something to talk about after that awkward pause:
“So where did you go to college?”
“…Bob Jones. But don’t hold it against me.” haha)

I interact regularly now with a number of college students at several different schools, both Christian and secular.

Rarely do I ever hear them genuinely praise more than one or two of their professors in any given semester.


Rarely do they have any personal contact with those men and women on either a professional or personal basis. (The faculty at Covenant College seem to be an exception to that, thankfully. And there are a few others scattered about.  But nothing like the BJU faculty’s totally “open door” policy which so many of us took advantage of when things got rough.)


Rarely do these college kids ever communicate that their professors LOVE them, care for them, wish them success, and pray for them regularly.

A lot of people think BJ enforced a too-formal difference between teacher and student. Yeah, that’s probably true.  But don’t confuse “I get to call my prof by his first name!!!” with an actual relationship.

When my mom was hospitalized with advanced last-stage cancer my senior year, my PO box was flooded with notes of encouragement and prayer from faculty and staff all over campus — some whom I hardly even knew beyond saying “hi” in some campus office somewhere.  When she died that August, I received sympathy cards from the entire university family, including Dr Bob and Dr Bob Jr.  Dr McCauley called me the night she died, knowing I would have to fly home the next morning, to make sure I had the money for the ticket and pocket cash for travel expenses.

No matter what the University has done poorly — and I’ve got some serious disagreements with their view of the world — all of us who attended BJU under God’s sovereign direction should consider ourselves deeply blessed by the faculty there who have given up their lives (and any shot at fame or “career”) on our behalf.   My education was incredible.



  1. Stockholm syndrome, or capture–bonding, is a psychological phenomenon in which hostages express empathy and sympathy and have positive feelings toward their captors or abusers, sometimes to the point of defending them, and sometimes the feeling of love for the captor shows. These feelings are generally considered irrational in light of the danger or risk endured by the victims, who essentially mistake a lack of abuse from their captors for an act of kindness. The FBI’s Hostage Barricade Database System shows that roughly 27% of victims show evidence of Stockholm syndrome.


    1. ha!
      I’m sure some people out there are nodding their heads sagely in agreement. 😉 But to be fair (and serious), I didn’t experience the abuse of the Fundamentalist system. Warped, yes. But not abused.


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