This week my niece Abbe and nephew Luke from WI are in town. They are such a joy and it warms my heart to see how excited our own two kids get when they know they’re coming for a visit. Faith’s prayers become inundated with requests for safe travels and fun times. Josiah’s mind fills with plans for games and the particular Hot Wheels cars he plans to bring for them. Our schedule becomes focused on time spent with the cousins; meals, outings, and sleep overs together become high priority since we don’t get to spend too much time with this side of our family.
And yet, with having “officially” started our school year last week, I can’t help but wonder what the balance is between these types of fun family outings and the lesson plans that sit on our shelves.
These family connections mean so much to me and I suppose that’s no secret to those who know me. I was born and raised in California and while I’ve been here for almost 7yrs now, certainly long enough to call MN home, all my family remains on the west coast. One dear aunt of mine, for whom Faith’s middle name honors, is in Oklahoma but that’s still a 10hr drive…might as well be across the country!
At the start of this week with the cousins, I woke the kids early to get in their math, spelling, and handwriting practice. The basics, right? But then as the week has worn on, we’ve found ourselves with even earlier mornings and later nights because of all the fun and I’ve grown lax with even the basics. It’s no lie, being a “home schooler” brings with it a certain amount of flexibility. Flexibility I’m glad to have and WANT to have in our lives. I want the kids to know that love and service to our Lord Jesus Christ is top priority in our lives. Love and service to our family and those close to us follow close behind. And because we want to be good stewards of the brilliant minds, spirits, and bodies God has given us and respect and follow the path He has layed out for us, we choose to commit to cultivating those minds, spirits, and bodies for His Glory. All of this means that while we’ll forge ahead in our studies, our prayer is to always have a spirit open to the needs of those around us and of the opportunities to serve. That requires flexibility, right?! 🙂 Who wants to say no to praying over a friend who’s just had brain surgery because they haven’t finished their math lesson for the day? *lol* I exaggerate but you get the point… (Although, I really do have a friend who just had brain surgery today! Please say a prayer for my great friend Cari…her story is here: http://www.undomestic.blogspot.com/ )
I do, however, recognize the need to tread carefully as we begin our home schooling journey because I know in the past I have tended towards a more complacent attitude that says, “All is well. It’ll get done. No worries”. Some may call that being “easy-going” and *maybe* (that’s a BIG maybe) I could be described as that but when it comes to school, I know I am still finding my stride. Thus, I want to remember that the commitment we make to the cultivation of our minds, spirits, and bodies is done so that we can be best used of God for His plans while we’re on this earth. No slacking off constantly in the name of fun. No rewriting lesson plans simply to make room for a trip to Disneyland (although some *could* say that’s a learning experience in and of itself!) No ignoring this awesome responsibility and awe-inspiring gift that has been given me in schooling our children at home.
So let me get this straight. In order to make room for being flexible, we need to be rigorous in our studies.
I dunno that I understand it all yet. I suppose I’ll struggle with this issue of “balance” until the Lord calls me home. *lol* 🙂 But what I do know is that if I train my eyes on the Cross, putting my Lord and Savior first, and doing everything as unto Him, it’ll all work out somehow. 🙂
Thank you, Jesus for working it all out somehow. I trust You.
Read Full Post »