Why Homeschool?

5 Aug

I’ve had so many people ask me “what made you decide to homeschool?… & “how long will you do it?”.

The answer to the first question is extremely complex!  Our reasons are broad. All of our reasons fall back to the one, most significant motive… God put it on our hearts.

He first put it on both Brian’s & my heart to homeschool about 2 & 1/2 years ago. I started researching & talking to many homeschool mothers, etc. Then, surprise!… we found out that we were going to be a family of 5. I immediately decided that I couldn’t be successful at homeschooling with 3 children so young & so close in age. (If I could only count the amount of mistakes vs. success in my life when I made a decision based on my own feelings/experience/limits instead of consulting God. The scale would quickly plummet on the failure side). I know in hind sight that I was putting limits on GOD, not myself… He called me to do it!… He would then provide me with everything I needed to be successful. Fast forward 8 months & Keely is diagnosed with leukemia. We were told that we would probably have to hold her back a year from Kindergarten or homeschool her. Now this is the radical Believer coming out in me, but I believe this: Cancer has been a blessing in our family… for reasons that stretch in many directions. No parent wants to see their child go through what I have seen my only daughter endure! But what if you could look ahead? What if, because of a disease (that she IS victorious over!), your ENTIRE family changed in a way that it probably would never have if it weren’t for this trial? It wasn’t as if we were broken before, but everything is more clear & direct… our goals for our children, our love for one another, what really matters, & especially our love & trust in God. I could go into so much depth here on how it has changed us for the better & how faithful God has proved that He is along the way. Words will never be able to capture what has happened in our family over the last 16 months! God promised that what was intended to harm us, He would turn around for our good. Our family is a living testimony to this (along with many, many other) promise. I believe that God knew our hearts… He knew we had the potential to be a family that glorified Him & His ways in a radical way. Can a family do that without something so traumatic happening inside of that unit? Absolutely. But maybe we couldn’t. Maybe that’s what had to happen for us to move from ordinary love for Him to radical love… a burning passion to please Him in what we do & secure our legacy as parents of a God-centered family. I never want to relive anything that we went through. & unless you’ve done it, you will NEVER understand what life with a child with cancer is like! But from this tragedy was born something extraordinary!

What are our goals?

Our goal is not to shelter/shield our children from reality. Our goal is to shepherd their hearts during these tender ages to better enable them to deal with that reality, based on a strength in their foundation. & that foundation is the Word of God.

Our desire is not for our children to attend Harvard (that is a worldly goal). Our desire instead is to center academics around God. That means more focus goes into character, building godly wisdom, love, servanthood, etc. than growing up to be something the world classifies as “successful” someday. (Keeping in mind that homeschool students are on average, 18 months ahead of their school attending peers in academics & out-perform their counterparts in pubic schools by 30-37 percentile points in all subjects). We have expectations for our children that absolutely include working hard & achieving goals (including academics), but if their character is poor & they grow up to be self-seeking, broken adults that don’t know or serve our amazing God… then we haven’t fulfilled our calling as parents. I want to raise children that are prepared for adulthood… to make healthy decisions as an adult without the constant direction of mom & dad. Most children are absolutely NOT prepared for adulthood once they are indeed, an adult. We have become a society that chastises young marriage because they simply “aren’t ready”… not your child’s fault, yours! You didn’t guide them into maturity. Young adults spend years making bad decisions & trying to “find themselves”. I don’t want that for my children.

Schools teach worldly wisdom & worldly goals. True wisdom comes from the Word. Knowledge apart from God’s Word does not exist. (Proverbs 1:7, 2:5-6, Col. 2:3, Psalm 111:10, Psalm 53:1). Our goal is to teach this wisdom without the confusion of what the world sees as wisdom.

God has given parents the responsibility to educate their own children. (Deut. 6:4-9) * stole the wordage for this here

For an argument on socialization that will rock you, see this!

“How long do you plan to homeschool?”….

This is a simple answer…. There is no set time. This is absolutely what God has called me & my family to do. I will do it until I no longer feel called to. Could be 3 years… could be until every child graduates. I follow God’s direction, not my own… I’ve found it to be much more beneficial & fruitful!

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5 Responses to “Why Homeschool?”

  1. Charmaine August 5, 2010 at 2:09 am #

    Vanessa dat was awsome answers to all ur concerned friends & family and u could not have explained that any betta that wat u did, u r a excellent mom and ur strength is out of this world, u & ur family deserves da very best a family could b given, i hope erthing works n ur favor!!!! I kno ur kids will b very successful n life!!!! Keep up ur good work!!!

  2. vanessathompson August 5, 2010 at 2:12 am #

    Charmaine, thank you so very much for your words! & thank you for your blessings on our family. It means so much!

  3. Lori August 5, 2010 at 12:23 pm #

    I love your post. We are not all chosen for homeschooling, but from my experience, it is a wonderful blessing. To be able to pour our hearts into our children is nothing short of a gift from God. What a wonderful testimony of God’s grace in your lives and faithfulness to follow Him!! Thank you for sharing.
    Lori

    • vanessathompson August 5, 2010 at 3:22 pm #

      I don’t think that everyone is chosen for this. I think that God has a special & unique path for each of us. & I surely don’t look down on anyone that isn’t called for this & has children in school.
      I also think that being able to pour our hearts into our children is certainly a blessings! Thank you for your beautiful words Lori!!

  4. the domestic fringe August 5, 2010 at 2:48 pm #

    Wow, I’ve never read your blog before today, but this post was great. Thank you for sharing your heart. I know you’ve encouraged me to “train my children in the way they should go.” Thanks!

    -FringeGirl

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