I'm amazed at how long I've been homeschooling and at how quickly my years as a homeschooler are dwindling away. My oldest will turn 21 this month, my second oldest is adjusting well to life at a college 12-hours away from home, and my middle child will turn 18 in the spring. I will then have three adult children...and that means I am entering into a season of giving pause, giving thanks, and giving encouragement and advice to those who are currently doing what I've already done.
So today's blog post is a little dose of encouragement and a handful of advice for the homeschooling mom who could use a little boost.
First, the advice ~
When you are choosing new curriculum, planning weekly assignments, or considering a new activity, carefully consider the path you take. Is it the path the Lord has placed you on? Or is this a path you've chosen without His guidance?
On those really productive school days, when everything is clicking and you're trucking right along, consider doing a little (or a lot!) of extra school work. Then you'll have a bit of a cushion for those days when nothing clicks except the sound of your heels as you run out of the house screaming...
Take a planning day now and then. And do not feel guilty about it! Planning is a huge, key part of long-term, successful homeschooling.
Purge your homeschool bookshelves on a regular basis - at least once a year. Sort out the plastic storage tubs that hold odds-n-ends materials and get things in order. One or two days of hard work can pay off big time during the academic year.
Get realistic about what you are actually able to accomplish in a day, week, month, year. And likewise, get realistic about the impact sloth and laziness has on your homeschooling.
Remember it's okay to make mistakes, sweet homeschooling mother. And make sure your sweet homeschooled children know it's okay for them to make mistakes.
Now for the encouragement ~
Ephesians 2:14a tells us that the Lord is our peace. Not simply that He gives us peace (which He does!) or that He is the author of all peace (which He is!) - but that He is our peace. Think about that for a few moments, write it down in your planner or on your to-do list. Jesus is our peace. That is very, very encouraging.
Ecclesiastes 3:11 says He has made everything beautiful in it's time. If there are things in your life that aren't beautiful, then remember this verse. And in the areas that are beautiful, be sure to thank the One who gave them their beauty.
Focus on what God has in store for your family; don't get caught up looking at other people's lives and wondering about the things God has in store for them.
You really can leave all the decisions to God, and He really will show you the way to go. He is unfailingly trustworthy all of the time.
I pray you're blessed today as you train up your children according to His word and His ways. May you sense His great love and care for you in a tangible way today!
Day 283 done :)
Jan L. Burt
author of The Homeschooling Mothers Bible Study
PS - Just one more tidbit from a previous post that I'd like to leave with you today...
We all want an answer to the age-old question, "What am I here for?" Philippians 3:10 holds part of the answer for us. "I want to know Christ and experience the mighty power that raised Him from the dead." That answer holds true for homeschooling mothers and for their children.
I'm not here to amass a fortune, become famous, or make a
name for myself. Conversely, I'm not here to become a wall flower, fade
into anonymity, or loathe myself. I am here to glorify God. I do that
first by knowing Christ. It is in the knowing that I begin to live a life that brings Him glory. My kids are here for the same purpose.
If He is truly our all in all, then we need to live like we
believe it. Make it your goal to ask the Lord to help you know Him more
and more, every single day; to allow you to experience the mighty power
that raised Him from the dead. You will discover the answer to that
deep heart question, "Why am I here?"
All of your life, including your role as a homeschooling
mother, will be blessed as you continue to know Christ more and more and
more. This is undoubtedly one of the greatest truths I've come to know,
and my hope is that many more women will take continual steps to know
Him in ever increasing measure. Starting today.