Before you read this post. Wont you listen to this song in a prayerful attitude. Rest in Jesus and let Him minister to your heart…
I think that it is fair to say as Christian home educators, that most of us who are teaching our little ones at home are doing to because we heard God’s call to bring them home. We brought them home so that we could raise them to be Kingdom children, so that we could build Kingdom families. Do you know that to do this we need to forsake the things of this world and follow Jesus with unashamed devotion? Do you know that we are to be peculiar to others? Gods ways are not the worlds ways. Gods ways are strange and peculiar to people of this world. Why do you think that some of you face such opposition from friends and family? It’s because you have chosen to reject the worlds way, and to heed God’s call and teach them His way.
Why then, after enduring the comments, looks and shaking of heads when we pulled our children out of the worlds system, do we immediately put the system into our homes? If we do this we are homeschooling for homeschoolings sake – not for the sake of Jesus Christ.
Could it be that we lack the vision of Christ in our homes. You see, when I brought my children home, I brought them home to raise them for the chief purpose of teaching them of Christ and of His love. Daily, my aim should be to gently lead my children deeper into Christs love. I teach math, language geography etc because I am am called to be a good steward of my children’s education by God. I don’t teach it for the sake of building my child’s knowledge on climate change and layers of the atmosphere etc. My heart is to please God. I want to breathe the breath of heaven into my children, not the breath of the world. When my children look into my eyes, I want them to see my Heavenly Fathers eyes. When I look into my children’s eyes, I want to see my heavenly Fathers eyes in their souls. This is my goal. This is the good thing. When I have a solid grasp on what it is to ‘raise my children in the way that they should go’, then my choices are easy and my path clear.
When I have heavenly goals for my children, will I get all worked up and angry when I am explaining a math concept for the sixth time and my child is still staring back at me with that blank empty look? Will I loose my cool and shout, or will I realize that this is not the ultimate goal that I have for my child? Will I trust that God will grant me wisdom an insight to teach that concept another way, perhaps a different day. Will I instead of hurting my child with my temper, rather pull him close, give him a hug and say, ‘don’t worry, lets try again tomorrow.’
I have a daughter who has struggled with spacial planning and as a result learning to read and write has been an uphill struggle. She would have simply collapsed in a mainstream system. Because of this, she has a reading age about 2 years behind her physical age. In the beginning this really consumed me. After all, it’s important that she is on this language workbook because that is her grade level! Right?
God created each of his children perfectly. There is nothing wrong with my daughter, what was wrong was my fixation on the worlds benchmark of what my child should have been achieving by which ages. A friend pointed out to me that I needed to let it go and trust God to handle it and to rather persevere in gentleness and love as Jesus would. What I had to do was ignore the worlds recommendation and go with God. The worlds recommendation was causing me to put pressure on my child. Often she would end up in tears and in a state of panic. This was NOT showing the love or the encouragement of Christ.
I took that godly advice. I got on my knees (a familiar position to me now ;o) and surrendered my perceived areas of importance to God. Did she suddenly miraculously start reading without a problem? No – of course not. But here we are, 4 years on, and she is reading with expression and best of all she is enjoying it. She is slowly catching up to her ‘grade level’. She may not ever take joy in grabbing a book of her own free will and consume it as her sister does, but perhaps that is not an area that God will need in His plans for her.
Please note that God HAS plans for our children. They are NOT our plans. Our task is to raise children with hearts that are willing to reach out and love others, with feet that are willing to go where God leads, with hands that reach out and touch other’s lives. Our goals should not be to raise lawyers and doctors so that our children can achieve riches and success in this world. Perhaps God does have plans for your child to be a doctor. But you need to SEEK out God for His plans for your child. Your heart was convicted for His sake, not your own goals.
Mom, don’t put school systems in at home. You brought them home to get away from the worlds way. Be faithful in your calling. Teach them about Jesus, show them Jesus. They see Jesus in you every time your speak to them, every time you cuddle them, every time you show compassion, mercy, understanding and encouragement when they are flailing around.
By home educating our children today, we are impacting our future generations. Our grandchildren and our great grandchildren. Teach your children about God, His ways, His love. Teach them how to pray, how to listen for His voice, how to read His Word. This is how we can impact the world! Our children are indeed the future! The Bible is a wonderful curriculum. It has all we need to teach our children. It is a great source of wisdom, knowledge, history, math , language etc.
I want to remember why it was that I brought my children home. I have in the past allowed my vision to become clouded with mans philosophies on education, curriculum choices, methods of teaching etc. But I am just so grateful that God has brought me back to my knees and is filling my heart and spirit once again with His heart for my children. May I ALWAYS keep my eyes fixed on God and on His desires and ways and set aside my own meager goals and ideals in favor of His.
Now I want to end this post the same way I started it, in meditation on my beautiful Lord and gracious Savior. Wont you come listen with me? Close your eyes and listen to the words of Amy Grants beautiful song ‘In Our Fathers Eyes’ and allow God to speak into your heart. Bless you for reading and may God bless your homes and your homeschools this week.