in Japan
Welcome Alumni!

Message from the Head of School
God Makes Things Grow

It is spring and there are signs of growth everywhere in the world around us. Flowers are blooming and trees are blossoming, including the beautiful cherry blossoms that adorn our campus. And while we have a wonderful maintenance team who takes good care of our school, including the shrubbery, the flowers and trees are growing not primarily because of their work, but because something deeper is going on.

There are signs of growth throughout our student body too, growth that has not been limited to the spring season but has been evident all year long. It can be seen in any of the classrooms, in the art displayed on the walls, in the musical performances in concerts, in the games taking place on the field or court, or in student presentations and projects. And while we have a wonderful group of teachers who are dedicated to serving our students in their learning, ultimately the students are growing not primarily because of the teachers’ work, but because something deeper is going on.

We might like to take the credit, but ultimately it is God who makes things grow and God who makes us grow. The apostle Paul reminded us of this when writing to the church in Corinth. He was seeking to defuse a squabble among the church members when he said, “I [Paul] planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God has been making it grow.... God...makes things grow” (1 Corinthians 3:6-7).

Sometimes plants or trees don’t grow despite being well cared for, and we don’t know why. We had a tree on campus last year that did not thrive for reasons that remain mysterious. Sometimes students don’t grow despite being well taught and well cared for, while others in the same class do grow, and we don’t know why. All teachers are familiar with this situation.

As a school, working to promote student growth in mind, heart, body, and spirit is our daily focus. We may not always understand the hows and whys of growth, especially student growth, but we do understand that we have a role to facilitate growth and to foster an environment in which growth becomes possible. It was gratifying to see that, in their report to our accreditation body, the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) team who recently spent almost a week on campus observed, “CAJ has qualified, experienced, and dedicated staff that ensure all students grow and reach their full potential.” That is a welcome endorsement of what we are here to do.

But in the end, it is God who makes things, and people, grow. And so we ask together that He brings about growth in every student and adult at CAJ, in every aspect of who He created each of us to be. Above all, as the apostle Peter encouraged us, we ask Him to help us to “grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” (2 Peter 3:18). There is no better growth than that.


Spring 2024

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