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News

2024

  • Networking 101: How to Create a LinkedIn Profile

    If you missed the networking presentation for junior students, click here to learn how to create an account on LinkedIn.
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  • PS/ES Chapel Update: Love Like Jesus

    We have been learning about different character traits that are important to God – traits that the Bible tells us should also be important to us. So far, we know that God wants us to be obedient. God wants us to be mission-minded. This week we learned another biblical character trait--loving! God so loved the world that he sent his son, Jesus, to die for each one of us so that we could have eternal life.

    He loves all of us. He loves us before we believe in Him. He loves us even if we don’t believe in Him. While Jesus was here on earth, he taught us how to love God and love others. We are all called to love God, and we show that love by loving others. How well do you do that? We all do it in different ways, but this week let’s be intentional with loving others and a good example to our children. Join us in showing God’s love by loving like Jesus! 
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  • Junior Parent Night: College Admission Presentation

    Join the College Counseling Center for a special presentation for junior parents about the college admission process. The presentation will take place in The Lighthouse on Wednesday, February 28, at 6:30 p.m.
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  • The One

    by John Bishop, Director of Spiritual Formation
     
    The formula for building a satisfying and life-long marriage does not primarily hinge on picking the right person. 
     
    If that sentence causes you to bristle a little, I get it. It directly contradicts a popular idea about relationships that suggests there is someone out there who perfectly “fits” you, and all you need to do is find them and you will know, “They’re the one.” We all long for a, ‘happily ever after,’ and it would be awesome if it could simply be found. This romantic idea makes for a touching movie plot, and maybe a sentimental anniversary card, but it is not biblical; it is not even realistic. 
     
    Here are some statistics about marriages in the U.S.: 41% of first marriages in the U.S. end in divorce. For second marriages it’s 60%, and 73% of third marriages end in divorce. And yet, no one shows up at the altar to get married because they’re hoping to suffer a lot of pain! What’s going on here? Most of us have been deeply affected by broken marriages. It is painful, disruptive, and costly on every level. 
     
    Here’s the sobering reality: you cannot enter the most important human relationship you will ever have with a short-term, shallow, romantic, fleeting, ideological sentiment. And you cannot experiment with sex and sexuality, the glue that is intended to hold this most central relationship together, without consequences. It’s going to take everything you and your future spouse have to make it work, and it will still be hard. The Bible does not pull any punches on describing the level of commitment required in marriage. 
     
    Genesis 2:24 says, “That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh.” 
     
    You cannot get anymore committed than, “one flesh.” 
     
    Jesus was asked about marriage and divorce, in Matthew 19:2-9, here’s what He said,  
     
    “Some Pharisees came to test Him. “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife?” they inquired. “What did Moses command you?” He replied. They answered, “Moses permitted a man to write his wife a certificate of divorce and send her away.” 
     
    But Jesus told them, “Moses wrote this commandment for you because of your hardness of heart. However, from the beginning of creation, ‘God made them male and female.’ ‘For this reason, a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.’ So, they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore, what God has joined together, let man not separate.” 
     
    So, what can we take from Jesus’ teaching about the answer to our issues in marriage and intimacy, i.e., what is the thing that a satisfying, life-long marriage primarily hinges on? Well, it is NOT some squishy idea about finding the one. All human relationships and interactions have the potential to be enriching, fulfilling, enlightening, fun, challenging, satisfying etc. The thing that moves any relationship in this direction is commitment! This is most essentially true in marriage where we take it all the way to the level of a spiritual covenant with vows and everything. 
     
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  • Mark Your Calendar for Mother/Son and Father/Daughter Events

    Mark your calendar for these exciting upcoming events open to students from preschool through fifth grade:

    Mother/Son Game Night
    Friday, April 12
    6 p.m.
    SAC

    Father/Daughter Dance
    Saturday, April 13
    6:30 p.m.
    SAC

    Ticket links and more information coming soon!
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  • Purchase Tickets to "Into the Woods!" - March 7 & 8

    The Westminster High School Theatre Program proudly presents its production of INTO THE WOODS on Thursday and Friday, March 7 and 8, at 7 p.m. in The Lighthouse Theater.

    Embark on a magical journey with a whimsical and enchanting musical where fairy tales come to life. Join us for an evening of laughter, lessons, and Christian values as our talented students bring these timeless stories to the stage. Don't miss the magic – join us for "Into the Woods" and be inspired by the joy of storytelling with a twist!

    PURCHASE TICKETS
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  • Soulmates

    by John Bishop, Director of Spiritual Formation
     
    Have you ever met someone and after a brief interaction felt like you’d known them for years? Maybe they love the same sports or have read the same books. Maybe you found out some little things you have in common like playing dungeons and dragons or playing pranks on others. Maybe you share a birthday, or your families come from the same country or hometown or neighborhood. When you meet someone like this, there is an instant connection, like you’ve found a long-lost sibling. You might call a person like this your soulmate. 
     
    There is something profound and powerful about being with someone you can relate to and connect with at this level. Being known and understood is a deep, deep desire of our heart and a person like this often leaves us feeling known and loved. Do you have a soulmate? 
     
    I think there is a romanticized idea floating around saying there is a soulmate out there for all of us. But is that a realistic idea? We’ve all stood in grocery store checkout lines to see the tabloid covers advertising the latest breakups and dramas playing out between famous people who just a year ago had been labeled as soulmates. 
     
    What’s going on here? Who’s lying to us and what’s their aim? For the tabloid editors the motive seems clear, to sell magazines and make money. Maybe it’s easy to dismiss their use of soulmate to make a buck. But what do we do about our own genuine experience of betrayal, our wounds, and the times we’ve been abandoned by those we at one time thought of as soulmates? 
     
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  • Wandering Through WorldWonder: Chapter 6

    What’s in the Box

    Read Chapter 6
     
    In Chapter 6 Mica begins to feel comfortable in her newly discovered independence. She meets a new friend and is willing to go exploring with him a little. She also discovers a doorway that leads into the unknown. These are representative of the important milestones we look for in our own kids’ development. 

    If your child is the kind of kid who would hide behind your leg and cling to you with desperate fear whenever someone said hello, then perhaps you can appreciate at a deeper level the victory being illustrated in Mica’s progress.  

    It is not our job as parents to turn our kids into our expectation for them, but instead through prayer and a personal devotion to God we hope to understand who He has made them to be and steward their experiences the best we can to lead them toward His expectations for them. I hope this chapter serves you as a parent as you lead your child(ren) toward independence, adventure, and reliance on God. 

    We all need to have the courage to step into the unknown, and just like Mica, we are often blocked from pursuing growth and progress by some steps we need to learn how to climb. As a fun way of illustrating this principle, consider recreating the game we played in chapel this week with your kids, WHAT’S IN THE BOX? 

    Here’s what the kids experienced in Chapel this week: a few kids were invited to play a game called, “What’s in the Box?” There were three boxes covered with clothes with holes in them. Without peaking they had to reach their hand into the box and feel what was in the bowl.  

    If they did not guess correctly, they were awarded a prize for their courage. If they were able to guess what was in the box, they were given a reward for their courage, and a second reward for their accurate guess.  

    It was a simple illustration used to demonstrate the need for courage. Like Mica, our kids need to trust God. This idea is found in our verse for the year, Psalm 86:11, “Teach me your way, LORD, that I may rely on your faithfulness; give me an undivided heart that I may fear your name.” Written into this verse is the need for faith in God. Faith, as defined in Hebrews 11, is being sure of what we hope for, and certain of what we cannot see. We cannot have faith without being willing to reach out and trust him. 

    It’s difficult to let go of the comfort of what’s known and reach out into the unknown, but the growth we need and the growth we need for our kids will be found in faith. 
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  • 8th Grade Parent Meeting 

    Parents are encouraged to attend an informational meeting on Monday, Feb. 5 at 7 p.m. in The Lighthouse regarding the Washington, D.C. trip.

    Immediately after the meeting, the College Counseling Center will also share important information about high school course selection.  
     
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  • Gabriela Handel

    MS Students Selected to Attend Vanderbilt Summer Academy

    The Vanderbilt Program for Talented Youth is an exceptional opportunity for academically talented and motivated students to explore accelerated instruction in custom courses from Vanderbilt University faculty and graduate students. We are proud to recognize Gabriela Handel and Talena Rivera for their acceptance to this distinguished and competitive summer program. Their acceptance is an honor for our academic community.

    The residential Vanderbilt Summer Academy (VSA) for rising 7th and 8th graders will take place June 9-14, 2024. The program offers eight specialized courses ranging from "Urban Transportation & Data Analytics" to "Engineering the Human Body: From Health to Disease." Dr. Leslie Seidel, 7th grade English teacher, presented this prestigious opportunity to her students, and she met with interested students to advise them concerning the application process. Many thanks to Principal Manoogian, Mrs. Dumas, and the Westminster Middle School faculty for providing letters of recommendation and support for our student applicants.  Further information for the VSA can be found here.
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  • Fifth Grade Parents: Mark Your Calendar for These Important Dates

    Parents, please note these important dates as your student transitions to middle school. 
     
    Parent Information Meetings (Choose One to Attend)
    • February 21, 2024 – 2:15 p.m. (ES Gym)
    • February 22, 2024 – 8 a.m. (ES Gym)
    Important Dates
    • March 5, 2024 – Middle School Counselor Yeni Dumas meets with 5th grade students.
    • March 5, 2024 – Middle School Curriculum Guides are sent home.
    • March 11, 2024 – Completed and signed Middle School Curriculum Guides are due.
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  • Girls Soccer: K5 and Grade 1

    Spring sports begin February 21, after Winter Break. 

    Our ES Athletic program is designed to nurture essential soccer skills while also having fun! We believe in the power of teamwork. Your student will learn to pass, kick, and work together as a team. It's not just about goals; it's about creating memories at a young age. Practices are held on the ES field on Tuesday and Thursday directly after school and led by Coach Tony. Our  team also plays against other local schools on the weekend at either Coral Reef Park of Miami Dades Kendall Campus.

    Register today!
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  • PS/ES Chapel Update

    Are you raising a mission-minded child? Someone who has a heart and mind for spreading God’s love to others through their words and actions? This week in chapel we learned about Paul and how he had a huge change of heart and became dedicated to being a missionary for Jesus.  

    We had some high school students share with us about their upcoming mission trip to Costa Rica. They will be working with the ministry One More Child. This is the ministry we are supporting through our Noisy Offering this quarter. We are supporting their food basket program which costs $35 a week per family. So far we have raised $2,765 – enough for 79 food baskets!  

    Please pray for our high school students as they prepare for this mission trip over Spring Break and while they are there. And pray for all of our children, that they would have a heart for serving God. Thank you for your support for this ministry and for inspiring your child to be mission-minded!
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  • MS Kickball Tournament Cancelled

    Due to unforeseen circumstances, the Middle School Kickball Tournament scheduled for February 3 has been cancelled.  If you and your family registered for the event, you will receive a refund for tickets purchased. We apologize for any inconvenience. 
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  • Besties

    by John Bishop, Director of Spiritual Formation

    What makes someone your bestie? Common interests? Similar outlooks on life? Your families have been friends your whole lives? Trust? Or maybe it’s something less innocent like peer pressure, proximity, or guilt. There are a lot of complicated reasons why we choose to spend time with people; why we might throw around a term like Bestie. 
     
    Relationships are central to most everything we do and think about. From the moment we’re born and look up to our parents, and every day after, our lives are filled with relationships. We are bound to each other, for better or worse. Because of this it is important to formulate our beliefs about relationships. So how do we think about what we want from others and what do we think about our responsibility to others? And where do we turn to formulate these beliefs? 
     
    I think most of us would say that what we want from our bestie is to be acknowledged. To be seen, known, understood, loved, accepted, treated justly and kindly etc. But, often, even with our best friends, this is not always the case. You get (or at least feel) rejected. You must navigate complicated situations where being associated with one person gets you in trouble with another. Loyalties shift, interests wane, tensions arise, people change. This catches us off guard because it’s not what’s presented on social media feeds, movies, and music. Even though the closing scene of Grease shows Sandy and Danny riding into the sunset like everything is going to work out, we all know that the drama will continue tomorrow. It always does. 
     
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  • Preschool Soccer Starting at PK4

    Our ES Athletic program is designed to nurture essential soccer skills while also having fun! We believe in the power of teamwork. Your student will learn to pass, kick, and work together as a team. It's not just about goals; it's about creating memories at a young age. Practices are held on the ES field on Monday and Wednesday directly after school and led by Coach Ale and Coach Ty. Our preschool team also plays against other local schools on the weekend at either Coral Reef Park of Miami Dades Kendall Campus. 

    Space is limited. Register today.
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  • Join Us for the Annual Middle School Kickball Tournament!

    Calling all middle school parents and their children to join us for a day of fun at the Middle School Kickball Tournament on Saturday, Feb. 3, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on the Gutierrez Field and in the SAC.

    Have fun playing slip 'n slide kickball and backyard games, and enjoy shaved ice, a barbecue lunch and more! The cost to join the fun is $10/person. 
     
    Register and Pay Online Today
     
    Check-in begins at 10 a.m. Games begin promptly at 10:30 a.m., followed by lunch. See you there!
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  • PS/ES Chapel Update

    Do you like to listen and obey?  It is easier for some of us than others!  In chapel we will be learning biblical character traits (through stories and people in the Bible) that God wants to develop in each of us. This week we learned about OBEDIENCE through the story of Noah. Noah gave his whole heart to God and did everything just as God commanded him. . . even when no one else did. Ask your child if it is easy for him/her to obey.  How can you help them develop this important biblical trait?

    Read this article to learn more about teaching your children to WANT to obey.
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  • Swim Spring Session

    Taylor Infante
    This Spring we will be offering swimming for our ES Athletics students. 🏊‍♀️Swim evaluations will start January 25 for registered students. Students must pass the evaluation to continue in the after school swim program.Each swimming session will run Tuesday & Thursday with 45 minutes in the water. Space is limited to keep the swimmer to coach ratio ideal.Message from our Swim Coach Isidro Planell: 🏊‍♂️AquaKids has been providing the finest swimming programs available since 1989. We are a proud member of the United States Swim School association and a USA Swimming Club member. We utilize the latest teaching technique and coaching methods available.Swimming is the most important skill a child can learn! We wish to encourage more WCS Students to get involved and foster a love that could eventually grow into a passion for success in the water and out. ☀️

    REGISTER HERE
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  • The Best Cardio

    by John Bishop, Director of Spiritual Formation

    I think if you ask 10 people what the best cardio exercise is you will get 10 different answers, and you might get a lot more information than you bargained for. In fact, I typed, “The best cardio” into Google to see what might come up and there was an endless list of options. Of course, that’s because there are endless ways to get your body moving and your heart pumping. It also depends on your goals. If you want to lose weight, that’s very different from if you’re trying to build muscle while decreasing your BMI. 
     
    There is, after all, a wide gap between HIIT and dance classes, but both activities will get your heart pumping, both are great cardio options. You can swim, run, do burpees, row, jump rope, get a membership in a climbing gym, walk around your block briskly, or go to bootcamp to join the Marines. Every one of these activities will get your heart pumping and will benefit you physically.  
     
    But with all our focus on health, fitness, and physique, have we forgotten that our hearts are more than a muscle? 
     
    Have you ever been startled by something and discovered that your heart was racing? Have you ever held your breath and found after a little while that your heart was pounding in your ears? Have you ever had a near miss in traffic and experienced that flood of adrenaline and struggled to “calm your nerves.” 
     
    Your physical heart is connected to your emotions, thoughts, relationships, successes and failures, fears, and hormones. Your heart beats like you’d just done ten burpees even while you’re sitting on a roller coaster or laid back in a soft chair in a movie theater. 
     
    Considering all of this, I think we need to aim a little deeper when considering the question, “What’s the best cardio?” If you strengthen the muscle of your heart so you can run a marathon, but you never deal with the strife at home, you won’t have peace. Maybe you can sprint to the top of the stadium steps ten times in a row without slacking your pace, but how does your heart do when it’s rejected by your best friend? Perhaps you’ve had success trimming the inches on your waistline, but do you trust God with your finances, safety, and future? 
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  • Uniform Bottoms Available at a Discount at Dennis Uniforms

    Until we fully transition to All Uniform Wear for the 2024-25 academic year, Westminster families may still visit Dennis Uniforms online or in person for their uniform needs. They are offering a 25% discount on logo items on the remaining Westminster stock - while supplies last. 
     
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  • Watch Now: Protecting Our Youth From Human Trafficking and Other Dangers

    Westminster's Parent Partners hosted a panel discussion titled, "Protecting Our Youth From Human Trafficking and Other Dangers." If you were unable to attend, you may click here to watch the panel discussion now.

    Click below for supporting documents:

    Sextortion: What Parents Should Know

    Protecting Your Kids Online

    Parents' Guide to Smartphone Safety

    Internet Safety at Home

    Gaming Safely
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  • Model United Nations Conference: March 1-2

    The Model United Nations Conference takes places on Friday and Saturday, March 1 and 2, and is an excellent opportunity for interested students who are beginners or new to the program. The event is open to students from grades 7 through 12 and takes place at Palmer Trinity School.

    If interested in participating, please contact Ms. Hamming by February 15 to sign up. Limited spots are available.  
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  • Support the Blood Drive on Campus: February 14

    The Future Health Professionals (HOSA) high school club has partnered with OneBlood to host a blood drive on Wednesday, Feb. 14, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. All eligible students and parents are encouraged to donate. There will be two Big Red Buses in the high school circle collecting whole blood and platelet donations.
     
    Students can sign-up on Friday, Feb. 9, during their social studies class or stop by HS 210. Students will receive a parent consent form when they register. Additional consent forms are available HERE. Students must be at least 16 to participate. Additionally:
    • Students who are 16 need a signed parent consent form at every donation, even if they’ve donated before.
    • Students who are 17 need an ID and a signed parent consent form. This form will be valid for all remaining drives during this school year.
    • Students who are 18 need an ID, but are not required to submit a parent consent form.
    • Parent consent forms must be returned to the high school office no later than February 13 to donate. 
    While Westminster will remain a closed campus during the blood drive, parents are encouraged to participate. 
    Please register below: 

    Donate Blood
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  • Heart Rate Monitor

    by John Bishop, Director of Spiritual Formation 
     
    I got frustrated the other day after realizing that I’d forgotten to turn on Strava before the three-mile walk I’d just finished. I said out loud in frustration, “I don’t get credit if it’s not tracked!” The people I was with laughed at me, rightfully so. 
     
    On the other hand, I find that tracking metrics like distance, speed, or reps is an essential part of building and maintaining an effective fitness plan. And when I look back on my week, it helps me to stay more consistent if I’ve tracked what I’ve done. For me, I don’t know if I’m pushing myself to an appropriate stress level if I don’t know how far, how fast, or how many I did last time. 
     
    A few years ago, I was training for a big race and picked up a book I thought might be helpful called The Triathletes Training Bible, By Joe Friel. You’ll need to read the book to get accurate technical details, but here’s one of the things I took away from it: to build endurance you need to maintain peak exertion over a set distance largely independent of time. And central to all his biometrics is an accurate heart rate. 
     
    If you walk three miles and your heart rate never picks up, then you can say you had a nice stroll. You can celebrate that you were active, and perhaps the casual walk is significantly better than sitting in a desk chair with respect to overall health choices, so it is an unequivocal success! On the other hand, if you walk three miles today and your heart rate skyrockets – your Apple Watch, Fitbit, Garmin, Vital or whatever reads 125 bpm, that is an entirely different story! You are working hard, and your body is telling you through your heart rate that it is responding to accommodate the effort.  
     
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  • Wandering Through WorldWonder: Chapter 5

    Read Chapter 5: Rubber Boots and Bubbles

    Back in chapter 2, while Mr. Heetderks (who represents God in this story) is carrying Mac away from the firepit, he turns back to Mica and says, “Come on Mica, you don’t need to stay up there, I think. You can come back with me. After we get your brother settled, I can give you the tour around WorldWonder.” He makes a promise to Mica in chapter 2 that he fulfills in chapter 5. God always keeps His promises! 

    In chapter 3, however, Mica has to face Doc, a Burmese python who represents evil. In chapter 4 she is left behind in the Nature Center and struggles with insecurity, feeling like she has been abandoned. Mica is facing a reality that we all must navigate - the gap!  

    There is a gap between when God makes His promise to us and when He keeps it, and that gap can feel very wide. Learning to rely on God’s faithfulness, like our verse for the year (Psalm 86:11) instructs, requires us to hold onto God’s promise even while we face evil and feel abandoned. 

    As parents, we are going to let our kids down, it cannot be avoided. As fantastic as our faculty and staff are and as amazing as Westminster is, it is inevitable that we will make mistakes and get it wrong sometimes. Your kids likely have wonderful friends, but it is inevitable that friends will sometimes say and do mean things and your kids will face rejection and disappointment. This is the normal experience of life. We don’t like it, and we campaign to change it, but it will never change. We are not God. When we make a promise, we don’t always keep it. 
     
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  • PS/ES Chapel Update

    The Bible tells us to love the Lord our God with all of our heart, mind, and soul; and to love our neighbor as ourselves. We learned this week that we can do that by being generous - with our money, time, talents, hugs, smiles, kindness, and prayers. The PS and ES students have been incredibly generous in supporting our Second Quarter Noisy Offering.  We raised $4,658.50 for PET carts and are changing the lives of those without mobility! 

    Our Third Quarter Noisy Offering will be supporting One More Child, a ministry in Costa Rica. Mr. Lopez will be leading a group of high school students on mission trip to support this ministry over Spring Break. For $35, we can provide a food basket to feed a family in need. Let's see how many families we can feed! Our fourth graders are already off to an amazing start by collecting $215 in the first two days - enough to feed six families!

    Learn more HERE.
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  • Change of Heart

    by John Bishop, Director of Spiritual Formation
     
    One of the great challenges we face in achieving our goals is inconsistency. Here’s the pattern: you lay out a good goal. “I’m going to work out!” “I’m going to do better in math.” “I’m going to spend less time on social media.” 
     
    Then you start with great momentum. Somewhere along the way, however, you miss a workout. Maybe you got injured and had to take a break, maybe you stayed out too late and couldn’t get up, or maybe something more enticing distracted you. Whatever the reason, now your perfect streak is an inconsistent one, the beginning of the end - it’s so much easier to stop altogether once you’ve practiced stopping once. 
     
    You start by getting all your homework done for math and a couple weeks later you’ve reverted to your old habits.  
     
    You deleted Snapchat and Instagram, but then a friend told you a story and you just had to see, so you reinstalled them…the beginning of the end! 
     
    This is true in our spiritual pursuits as well. You might come back from a beautiful Christmas service with a strong desire to be closer to God. You start praying every day and commit to being in church more. You make it a week, two weeks, a month, but inevitably something happens. 
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Westminster Christian School, located in Palmetto Bay, Florida, is a private, college-preparatory school for children from preschool through twelfth grade.