I remember it being the start of the school year; September 16th, 2016.
I recall having this question on my mind:
“Why and who decided that our children have to leave every year, to a building filled with other children to be taught what they could essentially learn from home? Being exposed to groups of people they hardly know, who will expose them to many things that at their age they should not know. To take my children’s heart and trust it to a total stranger and believe they will guide them to Christ like me. Who decided that I had to take the children God trusted me with and hand them over for 6 hours a day to a place that doesn’t allow Gods name to be spoken. When did this become the norm and why had I just now questioned this?
This thought ran through my mind like wild fire but I kept it there; in my mind, to myself in fear that if I were to say it out loud:
- My husband would agree and ask me what I think we should do.
- My family would find out; think I’m crazy for even having the thought of breaking what’s normal or ,
- That I was right and I would have no choice but to bring it to the Lord; and he’d say “I agree”.
Now before I loose you all, I want to say that I don’t think Public Schools are the devil, or that you’re a bad, bad, mom for allowing your kiddos to attend public schools but unfortunately that’s where the enemy roams with freedom and he reigns.. or have you missed it? Trust me, its nothing new either. So please don’t take it personal but rather as a blog post of my personal experience, as many of you have asked me to write about our choice. In no moment will I want to tell you, you are wrong or that I’m better but simply sharing our choice.
I’ve worked as a volunteer in the public schools since my oldest daughter started preschool and from that time I’ve gotten my license as a PeraEducator; I’ve seen what many don’t see because I have worked inside the school. So while many moms, including myself, would drop off their children and take on their day; our children enter through a door and waiting there at the door is great influence waiting to devour our children that contradict everything we teach them. I can’t always shelter my children but goodness can I do it for a while; especially if I’m able to, why not? Aren’t I called to protect them?
Alright now listen, I grew up in the public schools, in LA, San Jose and here in the Northwest and I can tell you that no matter what school I went to the enemy shows his face and especially for our children, the children of Christians. It’s not that we’re so super special, but it’s because of who we, as parent worship and pray to that the enemy wants to discredit our believes and our love for God through stealing our children and deceiving them. Have you noticed that?
So back to the story, I remember struggling through this thought for months and by experience I know that when for me, when I have something like this on my mind for that long; it means The Holy Spirit is trying to speak to me. He’s trying to get me to bow my knees and ask God this question. Naturally I knew this and like Jonah, I wanted to board a ship to: “I can’t hear you island”. <<<< Cheesy.
Around December I remember meeting up with a few new gals I had met on a mothers group and when we all sat down to chat they all shared they were home school moms. My first thought was judgment. No no-no not that I felt judged, but I was judging them.
Here were my thoughts:
- Pansies, they are sheltering their kids from the world.
- These moms are a bunch of babies, how else are our children going to practice their faith or become strong without temptation?
- So what, are these control freak moms going to attend their child’s interview as an adult too?
- My mom did it, I can too. I turned out just fine…. (insert laughter here because no, no I didn’t, it was all by Gods grace at age 22)
- Oh Jesus hung out with sinners, (yes Ana but he didn’t go get drunk with them… ahem)
- Why are they so scared of the world?
And obviously the famous one:
7. I WOULD NEVER HOMESCHOOL, I’m not patient enough.
I just have you know that, yes, these are my sinful thoughts. That, no, I actually don’t have angel wings that carry me from my bedroom to the restroom in the mornings.
So having these thoughts I was so confused as to why, having “my” reasons I still couldn’t shake that initial thought. One of the moms said to me, “you would be a great homeschool mom”. I just looked at her and said, ” we will see, I’m not in a rush”.
Um.. what does that even mean because I’ll tell you that I was in a rush just last week as I pulled them out of the school for the rest of the year and next untill we know God calls us to change it.
Around January my husband was promoted to a new position within his company and his days off were now Thursday and Friday. He would only get to see his children a few hours a day before we rushed them to bed for a new day of school. He came to me one night and said, ” I don’t get to see my own children and I’ve been thinking we should homeschool. There are many benefits to it but a huge one for me would be that on my days off I can be with my children. Also I know you can do it, we, can do this. I feel like its our job as parents to raise them ourselves and not a school”.
I. was. shocked.
Nooooooo, I thought in my mind as I had purposely hidden my conviction of this for months.
He went on explaining to me why we should homeschool and I had to agree that, yes, he was right.
Spiritually it made sense.
Mentally it made sense.
Physically it made sense.
Emotionally it made sense.
So that night we prayed to God and brought it to him, my husband convinced 100% that this was the right decision thanked God for the opportunity; while I stood there thinking, “um he hasn’t answered yet, why are you thanking him in advanced” haha seriously I did that.
More time went by and on the month of February, this year 2017, my husband was diagnosed with MS (multiple sclerosis) and that brought up the topic of homeschool once more. He said, “more than ever do I want to be with my kids”. So I prayed still… yes I’m that stubborn and blind when it comes to seeing what is right and not doing it.
That same month my oldest daughter seemed, off , I just knew something was wrong so I pulled out her favorite book and read to her and towards the end as we snuggled I asked her what was going on. She shared with me that she hadn’t had a recess in almost a week because she messed up on her test and the teacher was making her re-do it over and over again, breathing down her ear. My daughter gets very nervous when timed and this teacher was doing just that. The teacher and I talked about the issue and she told me that she was behind in math, the only thing was that when I helped her here at home she did great. Now at school she froze and told me that the teacher was making it confusing and she felt like she was stupid, when we both knew she was not. Hello Common Core. Evelyn was thriving at home, teaching her my way and not the way state standards call the teacher to do it. On that same week my youngest came home and asked me what, ” making out” was because a boy in her class wanted to do that with her, mind you she is in first grade.
I decided to look up what it was I needed to be able to homeschool here in my state and I found out I needed to be certified and so I took that as my made up reason that God didn’t want me to do it. Am I the only one that does that?
So I was emailed a list of women to call to attend this course to be certified and I left it there until one night I could not sleep and it kept eating at me that I didn’t even try. So the next morning I decided to just call in hopes that the courses would have passed and use that as my excuse. So I called the first five (5) numbers on the list, there were only six (6), and no one answered at all. I had one more number to call and when I called the last number a lady answered and we started chatting about homeschool and what exactly I needed and the days of the seminar and how much it was. Now get this, I said to this woman, “we were hoping to find a Christian seminar”, only two from the list were Christian based I found out later. She says in a high pitch excited voice “I’m your gal, we are all Christian based and one of the few in your area and we are having an early sign up special and these are the days…”.
I usually don’t use emojis, but, 😐 .
As if God was looking down and thinking, “what other excuses you have now?” Haha.
So I told my husband about it and he smiled big and told me that I knew what to do. This decision has to be made between both you; your spouse, and God not you and your mom or you and that one lady from the grocery store.
So friends the people I once judged, were the people I reached out to for help. I’m like the modern Paul… except not as holy or as amazing. The same women I once spoke harshly about to my family, the people I laughed at for being pansies were now cheering me with grace to do this. The women I looked down on for sheltering their children from the real world were now the same women who shared with me their fears and victories of their homeschool convictions.
I had to come to Jesus and apologize for my condemning attitude toward things I was ignorant to. Toward the women that now take me in and help me, to his Holy Spirits convictions. For disregarding my husbands headship for so long in this.
For us, homeschooling is a mix of things and not fear that the world is bad because it has been and it will continue to be until Jesus returns.
One of the things that I always tell myself is this:
“I don’t recommend that you homeschool out of fear of the world, but to homeschool out of love for your children and their salvation until the day they are ready to face the world we live in. Fear is not the right reason; teaching them day and night is a gift and homeschooling allows us to do that. We are called to be fearless in the name of Jesus and instead many parents homeschool out of fear and coward towards the world and their children see it and most the times those kids will be the same and grow up not knowing the beauty of using their gifts to reach those in the world. Never school out of fear, but out of love”.
For us homeschool will allow room to teach Jesus for more than a few hours a day, to teach our children to be rotted in Christ to face the world that we are called to reach out to. It will allow my husband to be with his children; it will allow my husband to not miss years of his children as his MS steals his energy, ( we believe in Jesus name that he will be healed). It will allow me to practice my patience. It will bless me in being the main source of Jesus they get to see. In being together and face their sinful hearts in a safe place to be corrected to become bigger in Christ. To raise my children myself, to raise my children to be together 24/7 even if they argue and use that as an opportunity to learn instead of separating them. To confront sinful behavior and to see them excel as they grow and learn more and more each day. It allows us to be a family without rush and freedom to grow spiritually, mentally, physically and emotionally. Will my children ever go to public school? Maybe in the future, maybe not. Whatever it is God calls us to do is what we want to do. Choosing to homeschool is a personal decision between you, your spouse and God.
So friends I wish I had this super Christian reason why, but these are the reasons and they were enough for me to go and do this for the glory of God.
I could have given you all scripture that many people use to ridicule others Christian moms on allowing their children to attend public school, but the truth is… I wont, I can’t and it’s not ok.
I can NOT take scripture and twist it to benefit what I think it says out of fear. Homeschooling, much like vaccines, the amount of children you have, birth control, coloring your hair and putting make up on is always going to be things that you should pray about. Based on what God calls you to do for your family, pray, pray and then pray more.
If you have been feeling God calling you to this, don’t ignore it; trust that his plans are better than yours. Obey him and let him guide you, let go of fear and find peace in knowing that as Christian moms Gods grace fills the crevices we miss. If you feel God is leading you to homeschooling, I would beg you to do it. It wont be easy as I’m always told but with God, friends everything is possible; even something like this.
God bless you all