Potentially Losing The Race: A Practical Guide to Home Education – Running the Race (Part 3)

I sincerely hope that this blog does not really apply to you. However, living in this world provides ample opportunity to become discouraged and return to what we initially intended to escape.

The pressure to conform to the status quo never stops. This is true respecting our Christian commitment, as well as our desire to educate the children at home.

By now, you have learned how to address the concerns of loved ones regarding home education. You may have become so weary of the “socialization” question that you have invented a “less than gracious answer” and you have become convinced that you are not ruining your children’s lives!

Still, the pressure is on and life is not fair or particular as to who gets what problems, only that they are inevitable.

Parents can be tempted to quit and they do occasionally “lose their wheels” and trip while Running The Race. It can happen at any time of the year and at any point in the journey, but January and February seem to be the worst times.

Remember the statement made at the beginning, the one about “requiring a lot of effort and faith”? If there is no biblical foundation in your life, you are free to do as you please. If you do have a biblical foundation in place, you are still free to do as you please, only in this case, you no doubt started home educating as a conviction.

Knowing that God has directed parents to train, teach and disciple their children, with no provision to abdicate that responsibility to “hired, replacement parents” in a very dysfunctional “gigantic age-segregated family,” how does one veer from this revelation?

Is God confused? Does He require one thing of us in the beginning and then change His mind and redirect us in complete opposition to His Word? Some parents have even stated that “God has given them a peace” about quitting home education. Really? Who is confused?

It is safe to conclude that, in order to avoid having to admit and deal with our struggles and fears, we deflect the issues by justifying our decision and by claiming that it is God’s will.

This is where confusion has set in, and it is quite often that parents in this situation become tired of Running The Race, believing that they cannot provide what is best for their children.

Is quitting the answer? Do you think that anyone else can do a better job of training children than loving parents? Is being tired an excuse to quit? If frustrated, is quitting the answer or is fixing the issue causing the frustration the wisest thing to do? If the children are “driving you crazy”, is sending them elsewhere a solution?

In making that decision, are you not just postponing today’s problems until tomorrow, when those problems are likely to become much more serious?

Before quitting, consider the following:

Nothing will change the fact that God is God and that He has directed parents to train, teach and direct their children to Him so He can direct them in their lives. Review your reasons for home educating in the first place and ask yourself what has changed.

Everybody experiences a crisis of faith from time to time, and you are no different. If you are in a crisis of faith, remember that it is temporary and in time, will pass. Seek a friend or mentor to encourage you.

Even though continuing on may occasionally seem difficult, Paul’s letter to the Galatians instructs us to “not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.” Remember that the darkest hour is usually just before the dawn.

Trials are to be expected in life. Learn and grow from them.

Finally, hang in there, God is not finished with you or your children. He is allowing you to be tested and He would never allow this testing to go beyond what you can endure.

Quitting may be the easiest solution, but it is a temporary one. As you have undoubtedly heard before, quitters never win. Sending your children to an institution can turn your children’s hearts from God to the world and its views and negatively influence family relationships.

Bringing the institution home is no better and not necessary, as there is no need for high school accreditation. We will address these issues in the next portion of this series.

In the meantime, remember our discussion about having to sacrifice when given children. Remember that we said that this sacrifice can be expressed as parents sacrificing themselves for the sake of the children or children being sacrificed for the sake of the parents.

The enemy wants your children and he wants them bad. He is fearful of fully equipped believers who can inflict damage to his diabolical plan.

The home educated are likely his biggest concern as he has not had the opportunity to poison their thinking to distrust God and His promises. And he has no lack of volunteers to aid him in discouraging parents who have determined to follow God’s directives rather than his schemes.

Perhaps keeping your children home is the simplest solution to keep them out of harm’s way, but nobody said it was going to be easy.

Trust me. You will never regret having kept your children at home, but you are sure to question the wisdom of sending them back to school or bringing that failed human institution home.

It is best to continue on your home education journey, so you can Finish Strong.

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