This article is dedicated to those mothers and fathers out there who:
- are currently, ever have been, OR in the future will be overwhelmed by homeschooling their children and feel like all they do is HOMESCHOOL
- all you do is talk about, think about, and dream about HOMESCHOOL
- want to know how so many homeschooling parents have time for things other than HOMESCHOOLING
I remember a time or two in the past 8 years where I was overwhelmed while homeschooling my children. The hardest time for me was a rough patch shortly after our third baby was born and my husband left on year long deployment #4. At the time, I was only homeschooling our oldest child who was transitioning from third to fourth grade. I was also chasing around our 2-year-old son while making sure everything else was running smoothly. It was a time where I honestly felt beaten down in my homeschool journey. I remember thinking that “if I just put my daughter back in school” it would somehow relieve some of the stress I was facing. One word in response to that last sentence: WRONG.
Yes, we all face difficult times in life. Those of us who homeschool will in fact face times where we feel like homeschooling is a burden. But I have found out along the way that whether or not I was homeschooling my children, I would have felt burdens in my life. The issues I was having in these tough times were NOT a direct result of homeschooling, rather consequences from poor choices I had made. Prior to this particular rough time I mentioned above, I had given priority to other things over reading the Word of God, and like the Bible clearly states, “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.” (Galatians 6:7) So during my times of feeling this way, even if I was not homeschooling, it would have not cured my problem. There was only one solution: to do what I know is right – reading my Bible and prayer. I want to encourage you to take a careful, close, and honest inventory of your heart before you decide to throw in the towel on homeschooling.
Hey, I love homeschooling. Most families I have met along this journey that choose to home educate also love homeschooling. But for those of you who obsess over homeschooling, I have one word for you: BALANCE. Like anything in life, when we obsess over something, we make it an idol in our life which is not pleasing to God and our children and spouse are affected. This may seem like a silly thing to write about to some of you, but believe me, I have met some people who I would have taken to a support meeting (if they had one) to overcome “Homeschool Obsession.”
This is a gentle reminder from someone who cares about you, that life is a balancing act, and the more you allow God to direct your steps the better you’ll become at living life with a balanced perspective. If all you talk about and think about is homeschooling, your children will develop a dislike for it as they know it is given priority over them. Just like anything else in life – if you pay attention to one thing and neglect another – you will more likely than not lose the thing you chose to neglect. This can be a devastating thing in any family. I admonish you to chose your priorities wisely and give attention to the more important things in life: God and family. And when you do this – everything else will fit into place in God’s perfect timing – just like a puzzle. I promise.
Living A Balanced Life
I hear people say to me all the time, “I just don’t know how you do it. How do you stay at home with your children, educate them, take care of your home, cook, blog, practice photography, deal with deployments…..” and the list goes on and on. I have another one word answer for you: GRACE. When God has called you to do something, and in HIS timing you proceed, there is an inherent grace that proceeds and follows you where ever you go. “A person’s steps are directed by the LORD, and the LORD delights in his way.” (Psalm 37:23) It is when I live in this place of continual grace that I am able to accomplish more than seemingly possible as it is God directing my steps. Balance is a lifelong quest – never give up on perfecting this delicate art!
I pray that this article has been an encouragement to someone facing any of these scenarios mentioned above. I believe that God will give you the grace to continue on in your homeschooling journey. There is more to life than homeschooling, and it is only at the feet of Jesus you will find the encouragement and wisdom you need to proceed. Don’t give up!