The Test of Ten – Helping Our Young People Choose Wisely and Live Rightly

The Test of Ten - HSLDA Blog - helping our young people choose wisely and live rightly - Tracy Klicka MacKillop - HSLDA Blog

When my late husband, Chris Klicka was in high school, he wanted God’s wisdom for how he should live and make decisions. He searched the Scriptures and came up with a list of ten questions he would ask himself when having to choose which way to go. He knew God’s Word was the ultimate authority for life and godliness, so each of these questions is accompanied by several foundational and insightful passages of Scripture.

In his teens, then, and for the rest of his life this list of questions, which I’ve called the Test of Ten, served to guide Chris in countless decisions he had to make; furthermore, it helped shaped who he was: a strong, faithful and incredibly useful man of God who brought glory to His Savior.

Because of his love for Christ and His Word, throughout his years of work with HSLDA and whenever he spoke at homeschool conventions, Chris’s heart for young people led him to encourage them to seek after God with all their heart:

“As a homeschooled highschooler, you don’t need to worry about whether homeschooling will prepare you sufficiently to be successful in this life. Instead, focus on what really matters, seeking first the kingdom of God and His righteousness in your life. Then, and only then, will all things be added unto you (Matthew 6:33)…You may have started out strong, but what matters most is that you finish strong. That’s what I want to do, finish strong…As you run, God alone is the one you must rely on completely. He will direct your path. Don’t walk or waste your time in your youth, but apply yourself and buffet your body. Not only learn God’s Word, but seek Him for the wisdom to apply it rightly. You will find as you seek God’s kingdom and His glory that He will open the right doors and enable you to succeed. Now, run that race to win!”

~Chris Klicka, taken from The Heart of Homeschooling, Living and Teaching What Really Matters

Parents, I hope you find this list helpful as you contemplate these questions, searching the Scriptures for God’s heart and His priorities for wise choices and godly living. Then consider sharing this list with your young adult children. It has been a blessing to my family!


1. Does it violate any part of the Scripture? “But examine everything carefully; hold fast to that which is good; abstain from every form of evil.” (I Thessalonians 5:21-22) “But each one must examine his own work.” (Galatians 6:4) See also 2 Timothy 3:15-16, I Peter 1:24-25, and Colossians 3:16.

2. Does it weaken my testimony as a Christian? “To this end also we pray for you always, that our God will count you worthy of your calling.” (2 Thessalonians 1:11) Are we living holy lives so as to be counted worthy of our calling by God? See Lot’s weak testimony in Sodom and Gomorrah. (Genesis 19:14) Can people tell you are a believer and are following Christ? Does the light of the gospel shine from you and dispel the darkness around you? “Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.” (Matthew 5:26)

3. Can I ask God’s blessing on it? “You belong to Christ; and Christ belongs to God.” (I Corinthians 3:23) We must do all to the glory of God! See I Corinthians 10:31-33, Colossians 3:17, 23, and Ecclesiastes 12:13.

4. Is it a stumbling block to someone else? Will your action lead a weaker Christian astray? If so, you are sinning against Christ Himself! (Romans 14:17-21). See also I Corinthians 10:24-33.

5. Does it harm my physically? Your bodies are the Lord’s too! Keep them from filth and injury, for they are the temple of God. (I Corinthians 6:19) See also I Corinthians 3:16-17 and I Thessalonians 4:4.

6. Does it edify me spiritually? “All things are lawful, but not all things are profitable. All things are lawful, but not all things edify. (I Corinthians 10:23) Not all things do! See also 1 Corinthians 3:1-15, 6:12; Romans 14:19

7. Does it advance the cause of Christ? “Act as free men, and do not use your freedom as a covering for evil, but use it as bondslaves of God.” (I Peter 2:16) See also Colossians 1:10, I Corinthians 15:33, and Matthew 10:38.

8. Does it give opportunity for the flesh? “For you were called to freedom, brethren; only do no turn your freedom into an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.” (Galatians 5:13) See also Matthew 16:24 and I Corinthians 3:2-4.

9. Will this help me share the glory of the gospel with others? “Give no offense either to Jews or to Greeks or to the church of God; just as I also please all men in all things, not seeking my own profit, but the profit of the many, that they may be saved.” See also Matthew 5:16, I Corinthians 9:19-23, and I Peter 2:12.

10. Finally, do I use the freedom to love and serve others? “Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves.” (Romans 12:10) See also Galatians 5:13-14 and Hebrews 10:24.

Enjoy the journey…there’s no place like home,

Tracy Klicka MacKillop Signature

Photo Credit: Photo and graphic design by Charity Klicka.

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