We need to stop saying we’re just homeschool moms
The perception of homeschooling, despite it now having settled itself more in the mainstream, is that it is weird. Homeschoolers are weird. They grow their own food, harvest their own eggs, grind their own wheat, and on and on.
We got into homeschooling because our eldest son—who had been enrolled in a private Christian school from K4 through 2nd grade—was becoming influenced by other children, for better or for worse. It was plain to see that as little as 2nd graders are, the influence is strong, and moreover, my husband and I began to ask ourselves why our son was being abdicated to someone else for instruction. Aren’t we capable enough of instructing him ourselves?
“The disciple is not above his master: but every one that is perfect shall be as his master.” Luke 6:40
It sounds insane to the world, to think of a mother who would keep her children at home for hours in a day to instruct them at all. Why would any mother put herself through that when she could drop off her child over to someone else while she runs errands, goes to the gym, freelances her skills in front of a laptop, or works for a boss to make him richer? Why would she relinquish the quiet in her home for the noisy steps of children in the homeschool?
The myth outside of the homeschool community is that you need a degree, or some sort of training to teach your children a formal education. Not true. How basic is reading, writing, and arithmetic?
Now five years into my homeschooling career, I can honestly say that I gain great joy from seeing my children—now three souls—learn a new word, sharpen their talents, speak Spanish fluently, exercise regularly, and learn the truths of God’s word.
And as an aside: as homeschool moms, we need to stop saying we’re just homeschool moms. It’s okay to say that our career is our children.
I was unsure of how it would turn out. My perception of homeschooling when I embarked on it was through rosy colored glasses. I imagined the best-case scenario for my children. Excellence. God-fearing individuals. But it isn’t quite what I expected. Reality is not always rosy.
But we have help. We have support. Homeschool groups, resources, and our church co-op has been so instrumental in our walk as a homeschool family. It’s the best we could do with the time we have left this side of heaven.
So when we hear all the naysayers proclaim that our children are weird, they’re behind the norm, they won’t make it to college, they won’t be prepared for the real world, I have to say: LIES!
Our family is better for it and that means society will be too. What is a society? Society is a collection of families. And if we raise up strong families in the Lord, then society won’t suffer for it but will gain from it. Within the unit of our homes, we have been brought closer to the Lord. Take this illustration, for instance (one I heard from a guest preacher over the weekend):
We create a culture of learning and draw closer together as a family when we lift Christ up. We can’t do anything without His preeminence in our lives. Our homeschool is rooted and founded by Him.
There are many ups and downs of homeschooling. There are doubts and there’s chaos. Yes, there’s repetition and moments of doom. We clean up messes, we mitigate disasters, we formulate solutions, we sanctify each other with challenges, but we make room for grace and forgiveness. The good days, however, have borne succulent fruit into our family and the dividends are numerous.
We are doing what we are sure God has called us to do. We walk in obedience because we trust His direction and rest in His promises. I don’t believe my children are missing out on the social aspects of adolescence and all the thrills of what the world’s definition of the good life entails.
And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes.
And thou shalt write them upon the posts of thy house, and on thy gates. (Deuteronomy 6: 6-9)
We cannot disciple our children if someone else is doing that for us.
We answer to God and are accountable to Him for the raising of our children. Out of conviction, we press forward through this journey of homeschooling. We ask our children what they believe God is showing them and beseech them to seek His face for the direction of their lives.
I believe the Word of God is infallible and gives all the necessary principles for living: “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.” (2 Timothy 3: 16-17)
The world sees us as weird, but I know God sees us as peculiar. That’s a better way of describing our lifestyle.