There will be days…maybe several. Maybe more than several. Things will NOT go as you plan. The schedule will NOT hold together. The materials will NOT be exactly the right fit. The entire endeavor will NOT appear to be all that you hoped it would be. You WILL wonder, “How did I get here?” We call it “hitting the wall.”
You need strength to homeschool. And there is only one source of real, practical, living, helping, nurturing, caring, grace-filled, mercy-laden, know-you-and-your-needs-type strength to seek: Him. Here are a few ways to daily draw on His strength.
- Pray. How can we do this job without Him? Our relationship with God through Christ is the underpinning to everything we do. Therefore we need to spend time communicating with Him. After all, isn’t the only way to maintain a relationship with someone we love, to spend one-on-one time together?
- Turn your plans and schedules over to Him. It is easy to get wrapped up in the practical and tangible. Schedules we can create and tweak. Materials we can purchase. However, children we can not learn. So trust your plans, schedules, and decisions to the one who does know your children, and does know how, when, by what method, and under what circumstances they will best learn.
- Remember who is Lord and who is servant. As Christians, we give up the right to our will in exchange for the perfect purpose of His will. Whatever our plans are for our children, they must take a backseat (if any seat at all!) to the Lord’s plans for the child He created in His image. We do have a purpose in homeschooling our children. And that purpose is to do His will.
- Unload your burdens. There will be days…. Did I mention that? Cast your burdens on Him because He cares for you (1 Peter 5:7).
- Rest in His promises. He will never give you more than you can handle — in His strength. Every trial is for our growth. Homeschooling is a commitment to growth — on the part of mom!
- Remember His mercies. They are new every morning. Be thankful for these children, made perfectly. Be thankful for these days of opportunity.
The following quote is from an article by Debra Bell that has been around for a while, but it helps illustrate our need for His strength:
I know a whole lot about home schooling in my own strength. I put a lot of confidence in my talents, my background, and my own energy in getting things done. But you know what happened…?
I fell flat on my face. My kids got grumpy and resentful. My lesson plans didn’t work. We spent more time dealing with spiraling conflicts than mastering our skills. I landed in bed exhausted and discouraged, dreading the endless days ahead. My heart overflowed with self-pity, bitterness, and ungratefulness.
It was all in God’s plan — even when we hit a wall. I see now, He wasn’t going to bless my pitiful efforts. He was using home schooling to teach me about His Gospel — His good news of amazing grace available daily to those who trust in His Son’s finished work on the Cross.
We can’t do this in our own strength. But we can draw on His strength, made perfect in our weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9).