fighting self-doubt

January 25, 2008 at 12:54 pm 1 comment

I’m not immune to discouragement in my homeschool journey. This year has been especially trying. A friend posted this note to our local homeschool community and with her permission I am posting it here in hopes it might encourage you as it did me:

I wanted to write and encourage anyone who doubts their homeschool…I have before.  I hope this reflection of my heart will speak to self-doubt.   I see that public school moms and private school moms also go through that very same pressure…they can look over the fence and think that what another family or kid is doing superseeds their plan for their child.  I venture to say it is not a home school issue, but an issue found in parents in all styles of education.  That is why so many children today, in our busy culture, are in a thousand activities!  That is why dinnertime conversations,  playing board games, and gathering round to read the Word of God are rare past times in many households…because so many parents have bought into the lie.  The lie is that they need something else. If they can just make their kid into this or that…they will be successful. This class, that sport, this activity, that grade, that one friendship, acceptance to that name college…that one boyfriend.  Even our children buy into that lie.  That lie comes from the enemy.  He does not want you to homeschool, nor read the Bible to your children daily.  We need to give our children over to the Lord’s direction…they are His children.

We are their worldy parents, their caretakers, guides, nurturers, examples. We need to allow God to make the child.  Sure there is a part of that they we must cultivate, but in our culture, too many parents believe that it is up to their own effort to make the child a famous baseball player, a talented piano player, a bright shining academic at Harvard.  And if we force those doors open, we may have children who suffer in the baseball league, like many of the steroid players are…we may unleash another musician who gives glory to the enemy and crashes, or a professor who teaches lies about God as Creator.  My point is we must allow God to guide us and give us supernatural wisdom.  Even among siblings.

What we, as Christian homeschool moms need is  1) vision that only He can give for parents to have wisdom in what to put before our children…be it discipleship of Word, character, matters of the heart, academic plan including activities, lessons, relationships, time management, 2) assurance, confidence, and access when picking the academic and discipleship plan (your classes and Bible plan).  Some of the limitations are finances, others access.  Some moms have a poor education, and they learn with their children…I once worked with a mom who had a 9th grade education who wanted to homeschool…how would she know what to pick on her own accord?  I was poorly read, but became a high school teacher…now how do I choose Classics to read…I have never read but maybe two books in my life!  Thank goodness God gives us wisdom!  Thank goodness he puts other moms in our paths, who give us imput and sometimes materials!  Pray God will help you, if you desire to have things, but maybe you have barriers.  Let our loop know what your needs are, and lean on Him to bring up ideas, books, teachers, or just a mom who will e-mail or call you and be a physical help to you.  Sometimes, it is about God changing the heart of a husband, that he would be moved to help in certain areas.  And perhaps, it is about finding ways to handle the negativity and isolation that can come from family, neighbors, even fellow church members when you do this thing called homeschool.

Sure, when we go to homeschool conferences…I have been found unsettled…I have thought, “Oh, look at that program…look at those students, look at that family how calmly they operate.”  “Which writing program do I need…maybe I should get both of those.”  “Do I do DVD for the older, yet I want to sit down and teach them myself.”  “I can’t do math past 8th grade.”

“What in the world is a classic book?”  “Should I teach mythology?”  “How in the world do you teach debate when you don’t know another high school kid?” These are all true comments that have rung in my head.  But what it boils down too…this is what God has given me…in 4 active sons that have been a handful but wonderful, the location in which we live and proximity to sometimes nothing ( I am from Atlanta where 600 kids in my church homeschooled, a homeschool book store was on every corner, and support groups in my neighborhood), the academics that we can find, purchase, and then the hard part…figuring them out and implementing them, and the extras we can or cannot do.  My school does not fully look the way I wanted it too.

It may blow someone elses fuses…but there were many things that I wanted and dreamed of…and I have learned to trust that God allows me what I need, and He takes away the parts I don’t need.  For me, it is distraction stuff…I have not had the personal support, the friendships, knowing other high school boys, or having the time to socialize with anyone who has our heart…God wanted our time to be spent teaching people the Word of God…so after a year, I accepted that.

Perhaps there is sadness or dissapointment, my friend, in your homeschool plan.  But I just wanted to write you and encourage you that God is the giver of wisdom, and He has given your children an incrediable gift…parents who will disciple and train them for great things.  Be content with what God has given you, and lean on Him for your homeschool…He is doing something very special with these kids.  Just perhaps, the thing He wants to do with homeschoolers, is something so big… as to restore or stand in the last generation…  Give your kids the best education you can, be confident in what God has given you.  Instead of doubt, give thanks for what you have…for every pencil, every book, every boring DVD.  Homeschooling is not about the materials, the plans…it is about the family and about discipleship for God.  In the end, it is needed, but it is not the reason…it is about Him.

Blessings, Elizabeth B.

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Entry filed under: Encouragement.

Bible Truths for Little Children Heart of Wisdom

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Jessica Pierce  |  March 28, 2008 at 1:46 pm

    Hi this is so helpful to know that I am not the only one who feels this way. Sometimes-actually a lot of times- I just feel like giving up and sending the kids to school. Not because of them but because I feel like I have no idea what I’m doing. I feel like they’re missing out on so much because I am so scatter brained and have no curriculum and no fun ideas of how to teach. So reading stuff like this makes me feel better. Thanks a lot!—Jessica

    Reply

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Psalm 78:4

We will not hide them from their children, Telling to the generation to come the praises of the LORD, And His strength and His wonderful works that He has done.

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