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Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Home really IS cool

In an attempt at openness, I want to tell you that homeschooling is hard.

I have really been struggling with our decision to homeschool.  It is not so much that I am not feeling called to do it.  I do think it's best for our children.  God has entrusted the care of my children to me, not the government, not even the church.  My problem lies more with my nearly crippling lack of confidence.

Somewhere along the way, I lost sight of why I am doing all this.  Homeschooling, mothering, housekeeping.  I got stuck in the drudgery.  I'm overwhelmed.  I look around and see nothing but chaos.  I am reactive, not proactive.  I have no routine--no rhythm to the day.  I kind of lost my joy.

I started to hear these whisperings in my ear.  Things like:
You are not smart enough.
You are not organized enough.
They're going to miss something important.
Just let someone else do it.

Oh dear.  I am a big believer that this is the devil's best way of messing with my head.  Little whispers of self-doubt.  In all of this, I started to think I had to be the one with all the strength and organization and know-how.  Me, me, me!

Seriously?  I know better.

Here are the facts, people:
God has called me to mother and teach my children.  He will equip me.
God doesn't care if I look organized or not.  He cares that I treat my children with love.
Education is less about fractions and predicates, and more about loving Christ.
God chose this path for me, and I need to be obedient.


Homeschooling is not the popular path.  It ostracizes me from almost everyone I know.  People at my MOPS group.  People at church.  Even people at the store ("shouldn't those kids be at school today?").  It isn't an intentional thing.  I certainly don't sit around feeling superior to anyone.  Quite the opposite.  Honestly, sometimes I view it as a burden in my life.  And, of course, that is when it is most difficult to be joyful about my path.

I have to be careful who I listen to.  I especially need to tell that little lying voice to shut up!  I have to intentionally seek out encouragement.  It isn't always easy to find.  A lot of people are waiting for us to quit.  Someone said to me, "Hm, I thought you'd be over this homeschooling thing by now."  Many people think it's just crazy.

Homeschooling is kind of crazy.  But crazy in a great way.  It is the hardest thing I've ever done (as I lump it into the "mothering" category at our house).  I have always been refreshed or encouraged at the right moments.  I know it is what God wants for our family.  I know He will direct me and give me the strength to do it.  I know He is already growing me in the process.  The growing part is a little frightening.  But, in the end, I pray that I will have grown in faith and obedience, and that Hub and I will have raised our children to love the Lord, and have equipped them to teach their children the same.

Looking for encouragement?
Jeannie's Journal post on fear
Before You Say "I Quit"
The Call of God from CMA

"For God sees not as man sees, for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart."
1 Sam 16:7

8 comments:

  1. Chesterton (of course): "If drudgery only means dreadfully hard work, I admit the woman drudges in the home, as a man might drudge at the Cathedral of Amiens or drudge behind a gun at Trafalgar. But if it means that the hard work is more heavy because it is trifling, colourless, and of small import to the soul, then, as I say, I give it up: I do not know what the word means. To be Queen Elizabeth within a definite area - deciding sales, banquets, labours, and holidays; to be Whiteley within a certain area - providing toys, boots, sheets, cakes and books, to be Aristotle within a certain area - teaching morals, manners, theology, and hygiene; I can understand how this might exhaust the mind, but I cannot imagine how it could narrow it."
    Um,yeah. what he said.
    You're doing good & well, you're shaping the future.

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  2. It is hard, but hard is not bad. I keep telling myself that! I love homeschooling and I hate it. There are moments I would set them on the bus stop, but then there are moments when I know we are doing the right thing. I am not so very confident of my skills either. I live in an affluent community with very high achieving schools. I just cannot compare myself to them. It drives me nuts! I keep my focus on the path set before me...
    Jenn

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  3. It's interesting the you feel ostracized because you homeschool, because amongst our college friends I feel "on the outside" because we public school. God gave you a burden on your heart to homeschool and He'll provide everything you need. You are a super Mom and great teacher.

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  4. I'm pretty sure you know how I feel about this post. Been there done that.....refuse to walk in that garbage anymore. My mantra of sorts has been for a very long time "If He calls you to it, He'll equip you for it." I think half the battle is recognizing the lies of the enemy and that he can only speak lies so whatever he's saying, the opposite is true. If he says you're not equipped that's a lie so clearly you are....etc. Nothing in this world wrong with seeking encouragement when you need it. You can and I'm certain you will do it...I'm here if you need me....<3 ya!

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  5. Another quote for you:
    "Obedience is easy when you know you are being guided by a God who never makes mistakes."
    -Corrie Ten Boom
    For me there are a lot of control issues going on too. I know I'm called to homeschool, but I still try to do it (and everything else in my life) on my own terms. And when it doesn't all look the way I want it to so that it will sufficiently glorify me, that's when the doubt and insecurity come in.

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  6. I happen to like things crazy. The more I can complicate my life the better. :o)

    Seriously, after 12 years of homeschooling three children, I've never had a year...month...week?...go by without having thoughts like yours. Then I look at my kids and I think, "They're doing fine."

    I "met" you on Bethany's Facebook page. Nice to meet you and see your blog!

    Peace and Laughter,
    Cristina

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  7. This is a great post! I agree with you - sometimes we do have to INTENTIONALLY seek out encouragement! I am lifting you up in prayer right now that the Lord will bless you with encouragement - bring women into your life to speak Truth into your life, and encourage you in the ministry you are pursuing IN your home!

    Blessings,
    Nikki

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  8. This was an excellent post. Do you have "other homeschoolers" in your area where you can get together and have class together? Or are each of you independent in your curriculum and not able to "join forces".

    I can certainly understand the hardships (and the ridicule) you must face...as a lifelong geek, I've learned that rather than facing the world alone, I seek out other geeks who are like me and then it ain't so bad. I would assume it works the same way for homeschooling? I'm pretty positive most who are responding are that frame of support, but why not band together and have school together. Mrs. McDonald does English, History, and Literature and someone else does the math, social studies, and PE?

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