This time of year the controversy between home school, public school, private school, and fill-in-the-blank school comes to a head. Today's blog is different than some. We shared a challenge at our home last night and I wanted to encourage parents and students that God is working in and through us, that life is ministry, no matter where we are.
My husband and I are intentional about sending our children to public school (you can read more in the page on this blog, "To Tango with a Teacher"). However, we do not oppose the idea or practice of homeschooling. As a certified teacher, I have supervised homeschooling families for the last 15 years.
That said, let me share some of what God is doing in our youngest daughter's life in public school.
Yesterday was the first day of the year. She came home from fifth grade happy and excited. She'd even finished her homework on the bus. Yay, God! But around suppertime there was conflict which led to a complete meltdown. Remember Elijah? The root of her reaction was that she felt left out and unfriended at school. I'm sure there are real reasons (we all struggle with a sinful nature) and spiritual reasons.
What began in tears opened an opportunity to visit with her about God's view of friendship. Those of us who belong to God don't "need" people. We love them. When we realize how much God loves and values and treasures us, we don't live or die based on the approval of others. We are already approved. So instead of living to be noticed and liked by others, we live knowing we are noticed and loved by God and we can love people. No strings attached. (Thank you, Ed Welch, author of When God is Big and People are Small and Lou Priolo, author of Pleasing People).
It's something she and I worked on this summer with her sisters, but now she's in a different playing field and is learning to think about loving others the way God does.
It wasn't until we were on our way home from church that the "Elijah" piece came together.
She was nearly jumping in the backseat after leaving church, "Mom! I got two tracts at church tonight. Now I can give one to Chloe at school tomorrow!"
"Because yesterday in line she said her grandma died and she wondered where she went. She said she wants to go to heaven, but doesn't know if she will. I told her I know I'm going. And I told her how she can know, too!"
So that was it! Spiritual victory often gives way to emotional and physical fatigue. Perhaps that is why other pieces of the day hit hard and left her feeling blue. And that's okay. God is at work and she is laying up treasure in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy and where thieves do not break in and steal. Once again, God has blessed us and we are grateful.
What a wonderful picture of God working in our childrens' lives--and ours.
Please leave a story of your own to encourage others or thoughts about your child's growth in their school environment. I'd love to hear you brag on God!