“Why would you ever choose to homeschool?” I really dread that question. A few people are just curious but others wield that question with a dagger. And some parents, apologetically, tell me how they could never homeschool their children. No matter the attitude of the questioner my answer is always the same…if I get to answer. Most people do not really care why. Those in attack mode just want to tell me that my kids are socially awkward and friendless. They judge me. The defensive ones explain the virtues of the public school system (or private) and how wonderfully the teachers tend to their child. They do not want to be judged. Either way, both groups walk away without hearing why I homeschool. People are a curiosity…sometimes…or a pain in the rear.
For the record…I am not your judge nor are you mine. I’ll leave that messy business to God. I am just trying to live out God’s will in my life and am trusting you to do the same.
Then there are those who are curious. They really want to know everything. The curious people have lots of questions. They want to know how I manage several grades and how do we work around the baby. How does the rest of the family feel about it? Are you really religious? Do you have a teaching degree? What are the legal requirements? How do you teach math? Can they read? Do they miss their school friends? Do they have to undergo state testing? How do you get everything else done? Why?
We homeschool because that is God’s will for our family. Very few people accept my answer. Nearly every time they ask how do I know “for sure” this is God’s will.
Luckily for me God provided for this question. Here is how I know “for sure” ….
I never considered homeschooling. My husband never considered homeschooling. We both went to public school and turned out well enough. I really though homeschooling was for religious extremists or military families in foreign countries.
In November of last year I ordered some pecans from a friend. She was selling them as a fundraiser for her son’s football team…I think that is right. The fundraiser was for some kind of homeschool team…When I went to pick them up we started talking about Advent and some of the traditions around Christmas. I was telling her about the O Antiphons and their history and on and on. I love Advent and Christmas. Suddenly, she says “You should homeschool!” I have no idea what she said to me after that. I was stunned! In my heart I heard the command from Jesus. What?!?! Wow! When I came back to myself my friend was apologizing to me and telling me that she didn’t mean to be offensive. I assured her that I wasn’t angry but spent the next few hours kinda dazed.
I knew my husband would be…well…I didn’t want to bring up the subject with him. I told Jesus that I just could not talk to my husband about it. I told him that He would have to tell my husband. I did begin to research homeschooling and curriculums but I didn’t talk about it for a while. As the school year progressed we were increasingly unhappy with the quality of our children’s education. We were concerned that our children’s potential was not being met and we did not like many of the influences our children encountered. By late winter my husband knew that I was looking into homeschooling and other options. I went to an open house for a local Christian school but wasn’t convinced it was the best option for our family. In early spring of this year my husband sent me a text stating that we would homeschool. Simple as that. Jesus gave me the confirmation I asked for!
Only three or four months passed from the time of my prayer until Jesus confirmed homeschooling in my husband’s heart. For me that is a pretty quickly answered prayer! And to witness how Jesus brought that change in my husband was…and still is…comforting. My husband’s heart is submissive to God…what could be more comforting to a family than that?