Tuesday, April 24, 2012

I just want to be obedient! Why does it have to be so hard?!

HOMESCHOOLING!?  Me?  You've got to be kidding me.  Lord, I think you have the wrong person. 

Ha, ha...sure, LAUGH it up.  I did.  CRY.  Because I am.  Sing praises for He is good..."Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think." (Eph 3:20).  I did not think or ask for this...

When God speaks to me, I usually can pinpoint exactly where and what I was doing...but not in this case.  I think I was in denial, when around 3 months ago, I felt God leading me towards homeschooling.  When I felt that little nudge, I remember praying "Lord, am I feeling this right?  I really don't want to and I know that I am not personally capable, but I will obey if that is what you want.  BUT, you are going to have to make this really clear.  I need some signs...I need some clear direction...I need my husband to feel the same way." 

So I waited.  I received many signs to follow as I sat and watched God at work.  I trusted He was moving in my spouse, so I waited longer to receive more signs.  Then I received a peace that passes all understanding.  I never knew what that meant until now.  Peace, that the Lord had my back.  He would equip me...He would bless our family...He would make this awesome.  I knew that I had to keep it to myself for awhile until I could sort it all out.  I researched for 2 months and spoke to many moms who homeschool.  I knew that it would still not be easy.  There were going to be hard days...days I will wonder what God was doing...days like this when I first starting writing about it all. 

I read in bible study while waiting for signs.  Lies Women Believe by Nancy Leigh DeMoss Lie #28 "Children Need to Get exposed to the Real World so that they can learn to function in it." Points from this section:
  • God never intended that you and I should know evil by experiencing it for ourselves.  His desire is that we should be "wise about what is good, and innocent about what is evil (Romans 16:19)
  • the challenge of every Christian parent is to bring up children who love God with all their hearts, souls, minds, and strength; who have a vibrant personal relationship with the Lord Jesus; and whose lives will be bright and shining lights pentrating the darkness around them.
  • Children will cultivate an appetite for whatever they are fed in their earliest, formation years. We should want their "want tos" to already be shaped when they get to the real world -  loving the Lord and wanting to do what we know will please Him.  Not having an appetite for anything that isn't consistent with the word of God.
  • Raise up a generation of young people who are not conformers but transformers
I continually have to read these over and over.  When I started thinking about all this, I was very overwhelmed with her going to school for 8 hours of the day, when before I hadn't really thought about it.  Why did she need to go that long?  When would I have time to talk with her about important issues and guide her to build her character?  I went to Kindergarten orientation wondering what they were going to be doing with my child all day when she could already do everything on the syllabus but tie her shoe and read.  So I trusted God and didn't sign her up.  There is absolutely nothing wrong with the school or the school administrators there.  I thought it was a wonderful school and met many nice administrators. 

Do you think that I just make all this up?  Homeschooling was no where on my radar until 3 months ago.  I mean... NO.WHERE.  I never thought negatively about homeschooling for other people, just "knew" that it wasn't a right fit for me.  I was excited to send her to school and have some free time for me (selfishly).  I was excited for her to be so tired that she would actually go to bed at a decent hour.  But the Lord totally transformed me during this process and He actually gave me a huge FEAR...a fear of not obeying and the consequences of that.  I wanted to obey but I knew I had a few road blocks. He also gave me a new love for my child and an excitement for this new adventure (yes, you read that right...excitement). 

I was thinking about the story of Abraham and Isaac.  God told Abraham very clearly to sacrafice his one and only son.  Without question Abraham traveled to the place God told him to go and prepared to sacrafice his son.  Right before he was about to do it God said "Do not do anything to him. Now I know that you fear God, because you have not withheld from me your son, your only son".  I was starting to hope that with my obedience to God like Abraham, He would say "Just foolin...send her to school".  So far this has not happened and I continue to see signs of this being what He has planned for us.  So I continue to research and at this point plan to be doing school at home for next year. 

Today (april 10th is when I started writing this) has been a hard day on this battle of deciding and following God out of fear and obedience.  I shared with a friend this evening how I was feeling and she stumbled across this article on CNN that was posted this morning (4/10).  The link to it is here:  Why I chose Homeschooling.  That again, gave me peace and reassurance.  Is this going to be easy even though God called us to it?  No...it won't be.  But I know the reward is much more great than choosing to disobey.  For those I have told so far, I have had major support and blessing. 

There are still days when I "mourn" the loss of her not going to kindergarten...especially when all of my mommy friends are talking about their kids going to kindergarten next year and how much free time they will have.  It will be hard sometimes...but I have to be obedient no matter what.  I do also worry about the loss of her "right of passage" and pray that its never something that crosses her mind or causes her to rebel.  I hope that she can see through this the love that I have for her...to dedicate that precious time with her to help her grow, mature, and build a godly character that God has for her.  I cannot do this on my own and I hand it fully over to God and trust Him with it. 

Can you please be in prayer for or family over this?  Prayers that we continue to follow God and be obedient to His will in our lives (even if it changes and makes us look silly, or even if it is uncomfortable for us)...prayers that we make the right decision on curriculum, prayers for our kids (who as of now are very accepting to doing school at home)...and prayers for me.  I don't want to be sad about it...it's not a loss, but a gain!  I do trust Him, but I am still fearful and overwhelmed!

Currently where we are at in this process (as of April 24th) is that we have told our family and some of our friends (mostly ones who homeschool).  We have met with one couple to see what they do and what they use as far as curriculum and asked for their insight on why they chose homeshooling and what it has been like for their family.  I have met with several other friends and discussed the same things with them.  I have plans to meet with a few more.  I am also deciding curriculum and preparing a "place" for our school room to be (this has been the fun part).  I have narrowed my curriculum choices down a lot and we just need to decide on one as a couple based on expense and some other factors (mostly Reece's ability and learning style, organization/ease of use for me, academic).  We have a little bit of time on this but feeling like we need to make a decision soon.  For our family, we will be taking this year by year...for now it looks like Reece will likely be home for kindergarten and 1st grade.  We will continue to assess and seek God out during the process because we know that He wants what is best for us and will continue to direct our paths if we chose to listen and obey. 


Amy said...

Love your post. And I love this quote from the article you cited-

"With home schooling, you can tailor the work time to fit in with the family instead of making the family conform around the needs of others."

Good luck and enjoy the ride!

leah said...

Hang on for the ride! Your post really reflects your desire to let God guide while you follow in obedience. I know you and Reece are going to be blessed beyond anything you can ask or imagine.