1. If you home school, you will have great days, very rewarding days, with very fun with projects and laughs, you will see your kids grow and learn from a very close view… but it will also bring the worst out of you. You will see parts of your character challenged constantly, your testimony will be very important all the time. Your kids will see your faults very clearly and you will have to learn to mould your character very often.
2. You will need to find new friends, friends that love to be with their children, that do not wait desperately for the hour when they drop them off to school so the can have a nice clean house or go for a nice quiet coffee with their friends. Your house will be used. Your floors will get dirty, you will have to sit on the floor and make a project with them, you will have to clean glitter of your nails (not because of your nail polish). Yet, your lunch time will be with very important people, your time to have deep conversations with your children will increase, you can deal with issues the moment they happen, you can pray for them and with them at any time that is needed.
3. You will face the danger of pride… thinking you are better than those families who do not like/want/can home school; you will be face with coveting (their “free” time that you do not have), you will be faced with self pity and making sure the world KNOWS what you have sacrificed for your children, so that make you a darn good mother!, you will be faced with other sins you never thought could be possible! You will want to make sure others know ALL the great things YOUR children are learning and the operas they went to and the leadership they are showing… and the list goes on and on and on…. You will feel the need to boast about your work, your children,… be careful! You will try to convince the home school world that your way of home schooling is the best
4. Your style of homeschooling will be your style. What works for me, may not work for you. Yet it is, if you home school, your responsibility to educate your children. Having a day off because of whatever reason, is OK, but waking up at 12 every day, do not take a shower and eat in bed every day, you are failing at them and the Lord and you would be better off not home schooling them. Education is a responsibility, and it may take you time to learn discipline to actually do school.
5. The amount of books, links, free links, subjects, curriculum, it is overwhelming! Be prepared to do some research before you buy, buy, buy, download, print, download, print, print, print… you will end up with many books, or material that will not be used. A waste of time and money. Peer pressure even in this will hit you: “You should teach them this, that, and that, my child at your child’s age, already know how to write in Latin, Greek and Chinese! Why don’t you see how important this is?” Buy only what you will use.
6. If your kids go to school and you want to pull them out, expect the first year to be an adjustment (yours and theirs) use this year to know each other, to learn to love your child, to adjust to having him or her around, to get used to the new noise around the house. Do not stress academically too much, but use this year to bond again, to learn the Word of God together, study it all.
7. You think, well, my child goes to a Christian school, he has Bible class every day, do you know what they are studying? Do you agree with the doctrine? Are they teaching them Bible stories or Bible doctrine? Is it their job to train your children in that area? How much time do they hear you teaching them about the Lord, His love, His wrath, His judgement, His mercy, His patience, His hate, sin, forgiveness, repentance, predestination, justification, sanctification,… Do you know these doctrines well? Do they teach them at school? Does your kid know what it means to mortify the sin? If they are teaching these at school and you are not at home, and then you have made a good choice in sending them to school but if they are not learning these at church and not at home either, then you will have to give account to the Lord for the soul of your children.
8. If you ever think homeschooling is something you cannot do, something that is for certain families, or you are worried that your kids will be alone, antisocial kids, weird looking, and living in a bubble… you have believed the view of the world. They do not live in a bubble, we talk about the Greek mythology, read it, compare the gods with the God of the Bible; we talk about homosexuality, abortion, drugs, bullying, sex, all in light of the Bible. When studying history, we study it as His-story. We see His sovereignty, His supremacy… we do not separate Bible History with history... But study it parallel from each other. We study evolution very through… and we see the lack of evidence… God will provide friends for your children. God will provide, He has to others, He will not stop now. You can study subjects together, do projects with them, organize a group, it will involve your time and energy. But they are your children and God entrusted them to you. Not to the system. To you and your husband to train them in the knowledge and admonition of the Lord.
9. Is it hard? Yes! But that is why you learn to depend EVERY day on the Lord. You cannot get out of bed without asking the Lord for His help. You will learn to trust Him in areas you never knew before. You will be humbled and realize that you are no better than any other mother! But instead, you are very weak and lack so much that if the Lord does not go before you, you cannot move. Your husband will see it, your kids will see it, you will confess sins to your children that they know already, but you can pray for each other.
10. Home schooling will try to be your life; it will want to take over, to define you. You need to keep in mind you are a servant of the Lord, a wife a mother and after that…. you teach your children at home. It is part of you, NOT who you are. Not every vacation has to be educational, if you make cookies, you do not bring math into it unless the lesson calls to make cookies… if you talk about you with someone, do not talk about how great your HS is going or how great your children are. Have other conversation subjects, be a well rounded person, do not boast but learn of others, if you make cookies, enjoy the time! If you want to make them alone, you are allowed! Have friends over and simply enjoy their company. Read, have a cup of tea/coffee…relax! Enjoy your family and learn together. You are bad at math?... no worries, ask your husband to rescue you (I do!).
11. If you think home schooling will save your children, you need to study the Word a bit more… You can dedicate all your life and energy into teaching your children to love the Lord, and yet is only the Lord who will give them love for Him. Home schooling is NOT the way of salvation. Jesus Christ is! Only Jesus can save them, only the Spirit can open their eyes. But you are required to teach them His Word. If you think they will be lost if they go to a school, no again. Neither one is a guarantee for their salvation. Will it be harder for one who goes to school? Yes. Because at such a young age, so vulnerable, not mature enough it will be very hard to persevere in the faith they are learning at home when they are being exposed most of their time to influences that will not encourage their walk but discourage it. Can they persevere? yes...with God's grace of course the can, but it will be harder. Than for one who is exposed to the Word of the Lord most of the time during their life, and when they are mature enough to stand firm in what they believe. But in both cases is only by God's grace and mercy that they will persevere.
I hope this thoughts help you with your home schooling struggle. I do not write often about this, because God knows I need to guard my heart and God knows also my weaknesses in this, so I do not mean to boast or to put you down if you do not home school. This has been an important decision in our lives and if you are struggling with this, my only intention is to help you, and encourage you. Not to debate or to exalt home schooling at any rate. It is a method, not a law.