Homeschooling · Life

Everything Takes Time

It’s such a cliche saying, isn’t it?

I can’t say it’s one that I’m mastered accepting or putting into practice. I’ve always preferred instant gratification and getting things down the first time. Really, don’t we all?

And when things don’t go my way, I get frustrated and throw in the towel. I see no progress and I say, “what’s the use?”

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But everything takes time. I can hear my husband say that as I type it. I can see the frustration in my face as he reminds me that it’s only been a little while and that I need to keep working at it.

Homeschooling has been pretty great for us, so far. The kids are learning and developing in ways I just never thought possible. However, we are now past the halfway mark and counting down to summer break. The kids have accomplished and learned quite a bit. If you would have asked me how I thought it was going one month in, I might not have been so sure.

My oldest daughter learned to read last year and there was a slight learning gap with switching curriculum. As she began to read her PACEs this year, each word took laborious effort. It was exhausting. There were so many tears, pep talks, and even a couple of days where I just had to set the books aside and take a breather. It was rough.

If you heard her read now, just a few months later, you’d see a girl reading bigger paragraphs, sounding out tough words, and soaring with confidence. Sure, she’s not perfect at it. She still has days where reading is the last thing she wants to do. But she’s grown and she’s developed in her skill.

Everything takes time. Time passed. And now we have success.

What a beautiful thing for me to see and a lesson to learn! {Bet ya didn’t know I was back to school even though I’m the teacher!} Instead of throwing in the towel and perhaps switching curriculum or thinking I couldn’t do it, I just trusted the process and we kept on.

This is something I’m glad to see my children learn, but it’s clear that it is still something I need to learn. I am one impatient gal!

The Lord has been showing this to me in a lot of areas in my life lately. Perhaps there are weaknesses I struggle with or things that I just want to see happen right away. The Lord reminds me to just keep pushing forward in the journey I’m on. I can look back over the last few years with the highs and lows, losses and gains, and I can see the incredible amount of growth and learning. The sanctification of the believer does not happen overnight and God knows that. Thank God for grace, right?

Everything takes time. That skill you’re trying to improve, that struggle you’re trying to overcome – whatever it is. It is all going to take time. Understand that the life of a Christian isn’t all summed up at the altar when a person receives Christ. That is just the first step in a life long journey where, thankfully, the Lord keeps you and sanctifies you by His grace. Everyone grows at different rates and in different ways.

Give yourself a little grace. Everything takes time.

Homeschooling · Life · Uncategorized

Why Do We Homeschool?

 I’ve wondered how I would answer this question ever since we decided to homeschool. Surprisingly, I don’t recall anyone asking this. It often seems like people have pre conceived notions about homeschoolers (or are truly curious), so the questions I receive are more like this:

  1. Do you homeschool because you want to shelter your kids?
  2. Doesn’t your school district have good schools?
  3. Wasn’t your daughter’s Christian school good enough?

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I met a homeschooled kid in high school once and I thought it was the weirdest thing. I figured his parents were a part of some insane cult and that they didn’t want their child to experience real life. I imagined he talked to himself all day or memorized a million Bible verses, because his parents thought any thing else was wicked or immoral. Clearly, I’ve met a few more homeschoolers since then and I’ve learned there are a variety of a reasons people choose this route. Some people I’ve met are not even Christians. They simply chose to homeschool for their own personal reasons. The idea that people homeschool their kids to shelter them from the world is really just not true for most people anymore.

This is especially when you consider sports, co op, church, and other ways for kids to meet other families with diverse backgrounds. 

We live in the district I graduated from. When I was in school, our test scores were some of the lowest in the state. However, these same schools have become nationally recognized in the last few years for their improvements and accomplishments educationally. They have some of the best teachers – some of whom were my own when I was in school. I am very supportive of our schools. My biggest problem with public schools in general is that my kids will be taught about things that we do not agree with. Don’t get me wrong – I will teach my kids about the theory of evolution and the birds and the bees. However, it’s my prerogative as their parent to choose when and how they learn these things.

My daughter went to a Christian school last year and did well. Her teacher was wonderful and my child learned a ton in her class. However, the tuition for the average Christian school is incredibly expensive. With two more kids coming up behind her, that price was only going to go up. When we calculated these costs, we began to look into homeschooling and if it was more feasible financially for our family. It was a no brainer.

Now that I’ve shared all that, I’ll keep my answer as to why we homeschool as simple as I can. 

We homeschool because I love being with my kids. We homeschool because I love teaching them. We homeschool because we like the idea of tailoring our child’s education to their personal needs. We homeschool because we can have the freedom to pray, read our Bible, and worship Jesus any time we want. We homeschool because we want our kids to enjoy their childhood. We homeschool because we think our children’s interaction with others can go beyond that of their peers. We homeschool because we feel it is our duty and right as their parents to educate them as we see fit.

In light of everything that’s been going on in our schools, I’m so thankful that I don’t have to drop my kids off wondering if someone will come in with a gun that day.

It’s pretty simple. I don’t hate non homeschoolers. I don’t hate public schools or public school teachers. We just really love homeschooling. It works. I don’t believe that making a decision for our family has to mean that I abhor the way another family does it. (We all love our kids and are trying to raise them up in this crazy world to know Jesus and live for Him!) I don’t really spend much time thinking about doing it any other way, because it has gone very well for us so far.
 

 

Life · Politics

Being Salty

  
My news feed has been blowing up with political posts. Gun haters, gun lovers, pro Trump, anti Trump … I’m sure it’s on yours too. Someone posts some strongly worded meme and then another fella comments with a rude retort about ignorance. We’ve all just become spectators to yet another unfruitful argument.

I’ll admit I’ve not always remained silent on these issues. I’ve shared a meme here or there. However, the more I see people fighting and going out of their way to insult one another, I really try to refrain. The things I see people saying to one another is simply disturbing and I’d rather not be included. 

I’m a southern gal who owns guns, votes Republican, supports pro life, and loves Jesus. There is no changing that. However, I don’t see any good out of proving my point with posting purposefully offensive content. I’ve never seen someone blast their opposing party and win them over to the other side. In fact, the opposite happens. Two people walk away offended and divided. 

This happens in many spiritual discussions as well. People fight over Bible versions, music, dress, and what kind of hair cut a preacher ought to have. They’ll even fight with lost people over it. (I’ve been guilty of doing this and it achieved nothing.) And just like those chats between gun supporters and gun control advocates, nothing changes. 

Want to know why? 

As Christians, we are supposed to be salt.

Matthew 5:13 Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men.

Now, I’ve heard it said that to be salty, you’re being the agitant and cleaner that’s showing people their flaws. You’re digging into their core and the truth offends them. 

Colossians 4:6 Let your speech be alway with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man. 

Uh, what? (I think y’all got confused with the worldly term salty which basically means speaking with no filter.)

It was never our job to clean people up. We are to speak the Truth of God’s Word in love and let the Holy Spirit do the work. The Truth might offend the sinner. Their pride might flare up in them as they realize their standing with God. But it is not our job to convict or to condemn. It is God’s. We are simply the messengers, the light that shows the way. 

We should not sugar coat the truth or shy away from it. However, we don’t have to be pushy or nasty with our words leaving a bitter taste. Salt makes things taste better, not worse. (Unless there’s too much … hmm.)

How do we represent Christ when we get into these arguments? What good are we doing by sharing pictures of guns to our liberal friends? What changes are being made by insulting their intelligence? What important conversations are taking place when we disrespect other people’s pain and experiences in these tragedies? 

None. Absolutely none.
[Gun lover: YALL AINT TAKIN MY GUNS! Bunch of low down liberals. 

Gun hater: You know, the use of all caps really got to me. You’ve really shown me the light.

*Both the gun lover and the guy formerly known as gun hater walk through a field of daisies, heading to the local gun range*]

Riiiight.

If we could stop fighting and hit our knees and prayer

If we could stop posting offensive memes and instead share the Word

If we could stop throwing insults and show compassion 

Maybe there would be some more unity in this country. 

As a gun loving Republican, I’m not angry with the “other side.” I don’t blame those who disagree with me for the things that are wrong in this country. 

The problem is that we have Christians who are quarreling within the church. We have lost people visiting and noticing that people don’t speak to other – no, they avoid each other at all costs. We have Christians fighting on FACEBOOK with saved and lost alike, while the world watches them insult one another. 

The church is supposed to be making a difference and yet, we are all in the thick of it!

I’m sorry. We can do better than that. 

I love social media. I have loved connecting with other bloggers, homeschoolers, and moms who share common interests. It has been a lot of fun! Obviously, I don’t believe it’s all bad. 

However, I literally get sick as I go through my feed and I see this kind of stuff going on. I believe it grieves the Spirit for His people to use such a public platform to spew insults and arguments. 

Our country needs prayer. Our churches need prayer. Our buddy that has fallen into sin needs prayer. Our lost neighbor needs prayer. 

They also need to see the love of Christ as we share the Truth of God’s Word. He promised it would not return void. Why do we feel like we have to pack it with a punch? 

This is a very serious and sensitive time in our country. Both sides have passionate views. However, instead of fighting, let’s share Jesus. Let’s share that Gospel story that still works in the drawing of sinners to the cross. Let’s overcome the evil in this world with the goodness of God and His grace. 

More guns or less guns is not the issue here. The hearts of men, women, boys and girls in this country is the issue. Homes where parents don’t know Jesus and are raising a godless generation. 

Let’s keep that in mind the next time we start hashing it out on social media.