Dr. Lawrence’s Blog: The Little Group that Began a Highlands Tradition
by Dr. Steven Lawrence
What is the value of traditions? We all have them, and they all seem to be very important to us.
Some folks think traditions are the only way to go, because they want to feel comfortable and don’t want something to be any different than what was done in the 1600s. Other folks say, “Well, it’s tradition…” and they strive to get rid of it. Because it’s a tradition, it must go away.
The definition of tradition is “the transmission of customs or beliefs from generation to generation, or the fact of being passed on in this way.” The definition doesn’t deal with intention. It only states that a custom or belief is “being passed on.”
There’s a tradition at Highlands that has been around for a while. Although this tradition takes place every week, it’s an event that seems to go unnoticed. Unlike homecoming traditions that have a lot of noise and commotion, this one is quieter. Unlike some traditions that seem to end too soon (like when the Knights and the Crusaders used to battle over “The Sword”), this tradition continues.
This tradition has its roots in a time (around 2004) when some folks at Highlands felt the need to step up and do something. A lady named Vesta Meriwether contacted George and Edith Forker about doing something, but not necessarily for the purpose of starting something. Given certain events taking place on campus, Vesta was seeking God’s protection and leadership. The small group soon added Ruth Abronski, Jean Eaker, and Mildred Cunningham—and a weekly tradition began. Soon Alice Fletcher joined this group, and thanks to her, this tradition still continues today.
The tradition has people walking across the campus and through each building, pausing here and there for a moment, and then moving on quietly and unobtrusively. This goes on with little notice, but if you are looking for it, you can find it for sure. Most of us would not guess the value of this quiet group. Most probably don’t even notice this very essential group of people who seem to be happy just going about their unnoticed business.
These folks are participating in the tradition we refer to as our Prayer Walk. Highlands parents, friends, and family members of long-gone graduates meet each Tuesday morning to pray for our school. They walk the campus with a list of prayer requests, placing before God our teachers, students, staff, parents, coaches, and others. They join the cause of our ministry and call upon God for His will to be done, for His protection, wisdom, direction, and many more things only He can do.
Many of our Prayer Walk participants have come and gone over the years, carrying this subtle but vital tradition forward—along with new parents who have joined the tradition this school year. Quiet, almost unacknowledged folks have given to Highlands their prayers, a value that is priceless. The affection, care, and regard for Highlands has not gone unnoticed in Heaven or by this office.
Thank you, Vesta Meriwether and those who inadvertently started a tradition because they wanted God’s hand of protection and blessing upon our school. Thank you, Alice Fletcher, for carrying the tradition forward as others joined through the years. Thank you, Mildred Cunningham, for continuing even to this day what your mom started.
I thank God for this tradition. It is not possible to know all the ways these prayers have protected and sustained our school. I do know that the effectual, fervent prayers of God’s people who are righteous produce a result of great advantage (reference). Also, if you hide and watch, you will also notice that when prayers cease, so do the “coincidences” of protection and blessing.
I thank God for those who care enough to pray and go unnoticed every Tuesday at Highlands; for traditions that show a true heart and dependence on Him; and for hearing and answering the faithful prayers for wisdom, supply and protection.
If you would like to be part of this Highlands tradition, join us at the main school office at 8:15 AM on Tuesday mornings. As Dr. Lawrence says, “This tradition is a good one, and I trust that it will never go away…kind of like breathing is traditional…I don’t want it to stop.”
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