Before You Say "I quit!"

http://www.crosswalk.com/homeschool/11638179/page0/ An encouraging article by Deborah Wuehler, where she concludes with "25 Reasons Not to Give Up"-

Quote:
* God's grace is sufficient.
* God gives us everything we need for life and godliness.
* God's mercy endures forever.
* It is God Who works in us both to will and to do of His good pleasure.
* Our children need Godly parent mentors and teachers.
* Our children need their questions answered from a Biblical worldview.
* Our children need and are permitted room to grow and time for creativity.
* Our children need and receive Godly socialization.
* Our children learn to be unselfish and how to serve others.
* Our children retain their innocence.
* Our children will have a lasting legacy of love and commitment.
* Our children and our children's children will be spared worldly indoctrination.
* We know where our children are at all times.
* We know what our children are being taught at all times.
* We know who our children's friends are and who their parents are.
* We retain our God-given right to educate our own children.
* Our children receive a superior education no matter what philosophy or curriculum.
* Homeschooled children receive one-on-one attention and specialized training.
* Homeschooled children can see and experience the world around them regularly.
* Homeschooling permits the teaching of important life skills.
* Homeschooling builds strong character and strong relationships.
* Our children will not have to walk in the counsel of the ungodly.
* Our children will not have to stand in the path of sinners.
* Our delight will be in the law of the Lord, and everything we do will prosper.
* Our God never gives up, and He gives us His strength to continue the journey.

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Audrey Cahilly's picture

... it's the peer pressure: What would my friends say if I quit? :O

Susan R's picture

EditorModerator

It's funny how we always equate peer pressure with the teen years, but adults feel it too.

However, the author of the article frames it with scenarios:

Quote:
A homeschool mother of four young children is more than just tired. She is weary and discouraged. She toils until late in the night, only to be awakened too early by the baby—and, without enough rest, her day begins again...

A rebellious child is draining all the energy and resources and time from a distraught homeschool mother... She sees no change in her child and is becoming hurt and depressed...

An insensitive and unsupportive mother-in-law, as well as nosey and rude neighbors, push another mom's resistance and resolve to the limit. Always being questioned, always under scrutiny, regularly scorned, and often excluded... Why doesn't anyone understand or see that she is trying to do what is best for her children?...

A child struggles day after day to just understand his surroundings, let alone any academics. Mom is worried about not only their education, but their very life as they have an abundance of physical and medical issues to deal with...

Divorce papers were just delivered, or a death certificate was issued. Legal paperwork that has more power to change a life than just the black ink on the paper, and it seems to crush the spirit of these homeschool moms... How can they face another day, let alone consider a school year?...

A spouse unemployed long-term, and barely hanging on financially, this homeschool family wonders if they are really doing what is best. Maybe Mom should try to get a job and they should put the kids in school...

This is about more than peer pressure to homeschool, or to not quit homeschooling. While all parents struggle with decisions about how to bring their children up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord, there are times for the homeschooler when the trials directly affect how they view the educational choice that they've made for their family.

There may be instances when a more fitting choice comes along, but some trials are meant to strengthen us, and a little encouragement might help someone whose knees are feeble and their hands are hanging down. (Heb. 12:12-13) Sometimes we need to remember why we've made the decisions we have and endeavor to finish the course God has set before us.

Chris W's picture

Homeschooling is a difficult road; it really challenges the parent spiritually. In other ways, it is easier : less time in school, less distractions & negative influences to combat, more freedom, etc. I don't have much experience with the positive effects of homeschooling as a motivation; in fact, I have seen homeschooling families whose children seemed to be stunted by homeschooling, not thriving. (this is not a shot at homeschooling, I just have very little experience with homeschooling families). I don't want to quit, because many of the challenges we face would also be faced if our children were in school. I have often thought as I work with my emotional and strong-willed 1st grader, "I don't think I can do this for 11 years." I think homeschooling can really get to the bottom of your weaknesses and the weaknesses of your children.. It's tough - but close relationships are.
I hope we are doing it well and causing/helping our children to thrive.

Susan R's picture

EditorModerator

The principles and encouragements to parents are essentially the same, regardless of whether or not one chooses home education or traditional school. As I said, "Sometimes we need to remember why we've made the decisions we have and endeavor to finish the course God has set before us."

What I think we need more of is parents who don't choose traditional schooling by default, simply because it is 'the norm'. It seems very few parents think about educational choices until something 'happens', KWIM? Most, in my experience, put more forethought and research into car buying than what school their child should attend. Of course, closed school districts and the lack of quality Christian schools limits our choices. But foremost in our minds should be what would be of the most benefit to our children and family, not what is cheapest or most convenient. If I had a nickel for every person who suggested we put our kids in public school because it is 'free'... and then I could get a full-time job and 'take the pressure off my husband'... as if homeschooling is my hobby and I am forcing him to support our family with one income.

Chris W wrote:
I have seen homeschooling families whose children seemed to be stunted by homeschooling, not thriving.
So have I- but what I see are character issues in the parents that do not go away just because the child attends a traditional school. If parents are isolationists or lackadaisical about education or unorganized and flighty, their children aren't automatically going to be more well-adjusted or receive a better education in school, because the #1 indicator of success in school is parental support and involvement. Ditto unpleasant personality traits- there are anti-social, shy, loud and obnoxious, troubled... kids in schools- but we don't or shouldn't put the primary responsibility for that on the schools, but on the parents.

Home education tends to self-select for involved parents, but there are always going to be a few who get in over their heads, and then are too proud to ask for help. Or they chose homeschooling because they want to isolate themselves, weave all their own clothing from homegrown flax, eat bean sprouts, and raise llamas. I know a family who moved to Costa Rica in order to live the secluded life they desired. Talk about separation...

But the same need for involved parents exists with traditional schools, it just looks different. Moms and dads still need to read their kids' school books, talk about what is being studied, make sure they understand how Scripture relates to the knowledge and skills they are receiving, explore the wisdom and health of their relationships... and even if the child attends a Christian school, the other students aren't necessarily going to be saved kids from stable Christian homes, so the need to be observant and influential is still there. We can't ever become ambivalent or complacent about our educational choices. And that is really the point of the list in the OP.

Audrey Cahilly's picture

Chris W wrote:
Homeschooling is a difficult road; it really challenges the parent spiritually... ... I think homeschooling can really get to the bottom of your weaknesses and the weaknesses of your children.. It's tough - but close relationships are...

Mmm, hmmm. Kinda like James 1 in action.
Mind if I share http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U0yvPgH90BA ]a few unstunted homeschoolers to help motivate you? Many of them were emotional and strong-willed 1st graders at one time, too. (then they were emotional and strong-willed 2nd graders, and then 3rd, 4th... H:) )