With thoughts on educational choices, textbooks, supply lists, teachers, and schedules, we all have hopes and plans for how this school year will unravel. Our children’s school year will look vastly different from their friends. Ours will look different from another mother’s. Life will take its twists and turns as it always does, and even our best laid out plans will have to be put to rest.
The choices our family has made have been carefully considered. Now it is time to proceed confidently. And when it comes to how we view other people’s decisions for their family, we should always extend the gift of grace.
What is often overlooked in the discussion of schooling choices and educational philosophies are the commonalities that we all share. Whether we choose to send our children out for a few hours of the day to be taught by someone else, or whether we teach them ourselves, we are all home educators.
Since birth we have been teaching and training our children. We have been instilling habits that will shape the rest of their lives. We have been teaching them about God, sin, grace, the gospel, and the importance of the Church.
None of this changes when our children begin school. And this is where all of us should find common ground.
Most people will tell you that in the end, it was not a specific kind of teaching or school that shaped them (both negatively and positively) most. It was the home and the church. This should not come as a surprise to us, but so often it does. After all, these are the institutions that God specifically mentions in the Bible.
When we make the home and church central in our lives and our children’s lives, we can rest confidently in our schooling choices.
So this year, I urge you to teach your children passionately.
- To love God with their hearts, souls, and minds.
- To hate sin.
- To embrace the finished work of Christ at the cross.
- To serve one another both in and out of the home.
- To love others as they love themselves.
- To be committed to a healthy local church.
- To be diligent and faithful in their (school) work God has called them to.
- To revel in the mind God has given them, to be grateful for that mind, and then to use it to its full potential.
- To be ambitious, not for their own sakes, but for the sake of the Kingdom.
And, moms, these lessons are taught in the unseen moments. They are taught by living them first. They are taught in seemingly insignificant conversations. They are taught while you laugh and joke about the school day or while you talk seriously about issues of sin.
They are lived. And while you live them, they are being taught.
So let’s teach with all of our hearts this year. Let’s pursue excellence in all things. Let’s show them the Gospel daily.
Whatever your schooling choice is, don’t neglect the gospel.
It’s for the sake of the Kingdom.