5 Days of Homeschooling Essentials, #1: God’s Guidance
This week several members of The Old Schoolhouse Review Crew will be giving everyone a glimpse into their daily lives by sharing “5 Days of Homeschooling Essentials.” I’m looking forward to seeing what everyone chooses to write about, as well as sharing my own “top 5” with you.
It didn’t take long to figure out my choice for the #1 position. As I’ve been focusing on my “word for 2014” (Pray), I’ve realized how essential God’s guidance is to every part of my life, including (perhaps especially) homeschooling. In fact, it’s making me marvel that I’ve survived this long without spending more time in prayer.
Psalm 127:1 says “Unless the Lord builds the house, those who build it labor in vain.” I cannot imagine a more monumental building project than homeschooling one’s children. With God’s help we are molding and shaping their lives, investing years in guiding them and helping to fashion them into the people He has called them to be.
All parents face countless decisions that will affect their children’s journey to adulthood, and homeschooling just multiplies that responsibility. I’m learning that bringing those decisions before the Lord and listening for His direction brings such peace, even in the midst of situations that feel less than peaceful.
For example, a while back I was spending some time praying for Ian and seeking the Lord as to how to best meet his needs. We seem to be going through a stage of continual testing, and he is constantly crashing into the boundaries we set for him. It has been wearing me out, and I was starting to wonder if I needed to make some changes in what I expect of him and how I discipline him. When I took it to the Lord, he reminded me that boundaries are a good thing. It’s like driving a car on the “Autopia” attraction at Disneyland. When you start to go off track, you get jerked back by the guiding rail. It’s not a smooth ride, but the rail serves an important purpose. The boundaries we set for our children help keep them on the right course. It may not be a smooth ride, but it’s a really good thing they’re there. Thank you, Lord, for this reminder. It gave me great peace, which I would not have found if I hadn’t spent time seeking Him for wisdom about how to parent Ian.
We face those moments with all our children, wondering what is the best course of action. Homeschooling brings a whole other set of questions. What curriculum should we use? Which books should we read? What subjects are important for this particular child? At what age do we want to start doing _____? Should we sign up for this class or activity? The questions are endless. I tend to be quick to make decisions, and usually my instincts serve me well. There have been many times, however, when I’ve been quick to jump into something that sounds “good”according to my wisdom, but later I find myself wishing I’d taken more time to pray about whether it was really what was “best” for our family. As I focus on prayer this year, I want to bring all these types of questions before God rather than just rushing into things based on my own thinking. I find myself longing for the words of Isaiah 30:21:
“And your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, “This is the way, walk in it.”
It is far too easy for me to run ahead on my own, without pausing to listen for God’s guidance. But I am learning that in homeschooling (as in the rest of my life), things always go better when I wait to hear that word behind me.
Check back throughout the week to see what other things made my top 5 list of homeschooling essentials!
To see what the rest of Crew is blogging about this week, click on the picture above or just get started with these blogs:
Marcy @ Ben and Me
Lisa @ Golden Grasses
Tess @ Circling Through This Life
Victoria @ Homemaking with Heart
Kayla @ The Arrowood Zoo
Joelle @ Homeschooling for His Glory
Melissa @ Grace Christian Homeschool
Beth @ Ozark Ramblings
Rebecca @ Raventhreads