We have prayerfully decided to Home School our oldest and while I am a little nauseous at the thought of her education laying my hands (ultimately given to God), I am excited to take on this new adventure. I have come across an article that I have found inspiration in and thought I would share. I would like to Thank everyone who has supported our decision and lifted us up in prayer, We are truly grateful!
Here is the article!
Where do you go to school?” is often asked of my son who always proudly answers, “My mom teaches me at home school.” I sincerely believe that he truly is a happy home school pupil (most days) but I also think he realizes there is no faster way to get rid of his unwanted questioner than by the two little words: home school.
I quickly realized that prejudices toward home school are inevitable. I most often hear that a home schooled child will lack proper social skills or will lack proper confidence when integrated into society. As much as I would like to reciprocate rudely to the ignorance, it is important to choose words (and actions) reflecting Christian integrity. The scripture below has been helpful for me in answering people about home schooling.
1 Peter 3:15-16 NIV “But in your hearts set Christ apart as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander.”
I have learned to be prepared for a lack of understanding of home school since many don’t understand Christ. So I prepare my reply using God’s Word, the source of the understanding of Christ. In Deut. 6:5-9 KJV the importance of a parent’s responsibility to instill the love and law of God is beautifully commanded. “And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently to 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 rises up. And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes. And thout shalt write them upon the posts of thy house, and on thy gates.”(Underline added) Webster’s Dictionary describes diligence as: showing painstaking effort and application in whatever is undertaken: industrious. Home schooling is daily opportunity to teach children the law and love of God with the diligence God commands.
Christian parents home school in the hope to provide spiritual needs as well as academic and physical needs, since not all are usually met in a traditional school environment. Christian faith is centered in hope. We are encouraged and anchored by our hope in God (Hebrews 6:18-19) When we hope in God we will never be put to shame (Psalm 25:3). We are joyful in hope (Romans 12:12). God’s Word gives us hope (Romans 15:14). Love always hopes (1 Corinthians 13:7). The world is looking for hope and I may be a source if I share mine.
The lack of gentleness in a discussion will surely add to the existing criticism and prejudice regarding home school. Gentleness is one of the fruits of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23); one of the characteristics of life lived by the Spirit of God. The Bible also says, “A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” (Proverbs 15:1 NIV) Exuding a gentle spirit may present a challenge but will produce better results.
Lastly, a respect in the difference of opinion may lead to a better respect of home schooling; to agree to disagree. There is no sense trying to convince anyone of anything; it isn’t about right or wrong. Treating the issue with respect will demonstrate maturity and humility and encourage people to let down their guard, set aside prejudices and hear out what is being said.
Christians desire to first and foremost seek God’s Kingdom and His righteousness (Matt. 6:33). Home school is one “strategy” for a Christian family to reach this goal together. Christian parents strive to combine a solid academic education with a Christ-centered life. Approaching prejudice and criticism with all hope and confidence placed in Christ and hearts filled with His word will not only strengthen Christian faith but will provide a better Christian witness to the world. I encourage you to use the prejudice as an opportunity to show the world the love of God.