Headmaster Blog for October 21, 2013: From the Sublime to the Ridiculous

“From the sublime to the ridiculous there is but one step
Napoleon Bonaparte to his Generals

And who should know better than the famous Corsican. At one moment in history it appeared that he would rule the entire western European continent. The next moment he was facing Field Marshall Arthur Wellesley, First Duke of Wellington, on the outskirts of a Belgian village named Waterloo—and we all know what happened there. Any tide is but one step away from turning.

The expression, “from the sublime to the ridiculous,” describes that tipping point when something elegant and beautiful becomes something ineffective and irrelevant; from the profound to the sadly comical. In my humble opinion there is a profound beauty about Summit and its mission. Having said that, it is important to be reminded that beauty in a fallen world is something that must be continually cultivated; elegance and beauty are often but one step away from becoming something else entirely.

It seems to me that, more often than not, the tipping point described above is involved with either presumption or entitlement. Presumption causes me to think that the elegant and beautiful are always there by default—and that they will always be there; history suggests otherwise. Entitlement causes me to think that the elegant and beautiful exist only for my benefit, but never at my expense; “I have a right to the beautiful but it shouldn’t cost me anything.” Of course you know that the death of both presumption and entitlement are but one step away from the new life to which Jesus has called us.

Throughout God’s Word we are reminded to be watchful and vigilant. The Lord warned Cain, “If you do well, will you not be accepted? And if you do not do well, sin is crouching at the door. Its desire is for you, but you must rule over it.” (Gen. 4:7) Sadly, Cain was but one step away from murdering his brother.

As Summit grows larger as a school it grows easier for all of us to assume—but one step away from presumethat the beautiful is being cultivated by someone else. In truth, the cultivation of whatever is beautiful in our midst is the responsibility of us all; that beauty invites us all to take but one step toward making this work all the more beautiful.

God bless you all,
Dr. Timothy Orton
Summit Classical Christian School


Summit Bulletin Board

  • The last day of the First Quarter is October 31. There will be sign-up sheets available for your teacher conferences on November 1.
  • If you are one, or if you know of qualified, certified teachers who might be interested in a faculty position at Summit (full-time Fourth Grade or Substitute, Seventh Grade next year), please refer to either Dr. Orton (headmaster@summitclassical.org) or Michelle Olson (humanresources@summitclassical.org).
  • If you have car-pooling, or other needs/opportunities, they can be placed on this bulletin board. Contact the school office to see how it works.
  • Please pray for: 1. God’s hand of protection over our school; 2. God’s wisdom for those who are leading and teaching; 3. God’s provision for the needs of our school (esp. a well-qualified Fourth Grade teacher).
  • If you are interested in helping with the Summit Christmas Program please contact the Summit office, corinnesaenz@summitclassical.org.
  • Summit is still in need of Recess and PE volunteers.
Headmaster Blog for October 21, 2013: From the Sublime to the Ridiculous