I can not even tell you how I have been chasing my tail with homeschooling. It's been just nuts and silly. But to God's glory all that has changed!
The first few years of homeschooling we did great. Why? Because they were so little? Perhaps. I think it had more to do with the fact that I had fun with them. We played games more. We made up stories more. We did more arts and crafts. I was relaxed. I didn't concern myself with the fact that we were studying animals instead of the earth. I didn't mind if my boys were ahead in math but behind in reading. I felt we were where we were suppose to be ... my soul was at ease.
Then third grade hit. I panicked. I looked at everyone else, where their kids were at and thought I came up short. Clearly this reflects on me not my boys. I became consumed with what they didn't know and forgot what they did. I became overwhelmed with where we fell in the world's standards and totally forgot where we were on the Kingdom's schedule.
I spent most of this school year on my face. I asked everyone I came across to pray for me. They did and I am forever grateful.
I spent hours on the phone with two wonderful and amazing girlfriends, not to mention the emails! These two gals were my sanity in times of trouble! Thank you.
I always knew that I was an electic homeschooling. Basic meaning is that I draw from all the styles to find my unique way of teaching. The boys respond so well to that. But even with the electic approach I found it hard to 'sit and do school'. We had our pretty notebooks, workbooks, textbooks, games, fresh pencils, living books, you name it. I just couldn't get it together enough to sit and take a chunk out of our day. It reflected too. The boys were having a hard time with patience. My discernment told me that it was from not being trained to sit and do the work. That there was too much free time in our day. Free time that became fight time while I was off doing my thing. I quickly repented of my selfishness. I also confessed to God that I ran because I didn't know what to do. I felt defeated. I felt like a failure. I knew that God called us to homeschool even before Matthew was born. So what was my problem now?
During all this God was so kind and patient. God revealed to my husband that my heart wasn't in it. I knew this was true the minute it came out of his mouth. Truth convicted me. I prayed for God to renew my heart. School had become difficult because I was bored. I was bored because I only focused on the negative. I only focused on the negative because I took my eyes off of what God called me to do. That was the change ... right there!
I stopped asking God to fix it. I started asking Him to train me. Teach me how to teach them. "Heal me Lord, heal my heart of worry and show me my steps.". Things started clicking in new ways. I realized that all through out the year, He was showing me that we are an unschooling family. Between articles and real life I began to see it in our lives. For instance, Matthew learned fractions this year not because it was next in the math book but because there was an opportunity for him to learn it. Bo had a major contract to write up. He had to measure out blue prints for an appartment building. Matthew helped him in the evenings. That is just one example.
This weekend God really ministered to me. It was at our church Saturday night. We had a guess speaker, Dr. Lee. He was so funny and so annointed. Backing out of the driveway I told Bo that I was going to the alter if there was a call. I said that "Unless it is for salvation I am going!" Well, let me tell you, He had an alter call and it wasn't for salvation! While I waited for him to come and pray over me I prayed to God. I remember saying to Him "touch me, just touch me. Lord, I am tired and drained." I also prayed for my son's healing, my father's salvation, my marriage and school. I realized that Bo was standing next to me as Dr. Lee approached. Dr. Lee put his hand on my forehead and began praying. I don't remember the exact words but it had something to do with the Holy Spirit making Himself known to me in a new way. I just wept. Then he placed his other hand on Bo and prayed over us as a couple (we had our Life Group Leader name tags on). He took his hand off my head and put both on Bo but quickly put his hand back on my head. He said this "God sees your humble heart. He has heard your secret prayer and He is answering." I almost jumped into the air! My spirit knew it to be true. Then he placed both hands back on Bo and prayed something I couldn't hear. The next thing I know Bo is laying on the ground. Our boys were with us. My youngest didn't understand why Daddy fell. I simply said that sometimes when the Holy Spirit falls upon you in such power your body falls down. Then later Bo explained to us what Dr. Lee said and did. He said that Dr. Lee put one hand on Bo's stomach and asked the Holy Spirit to come deep inside his spirit and life. Bo said that he legs just gave out. Bo had never been slain in the Spirit before. Bo said that he felt the reason some people fall is because God wants to minister straight to the spirit of the person with out physical distractions.
That was it ... the turning point for me. I woke up Monday morning with no plan for school. We just did it. It was so perfect. None of the boys complained. We just kept going with school. No one rushed to turn the TV back on. There wasn't any fighting. The house stayed straightened up. The mood in our home was relaxing and calm.
My spirit feels so free. I can feel His presence here with us. My heart rejoices!