“Am I doing enough?” This is a question that plagues so many Moms when it comes to doing home education. Of course you didn’t have to think about whether your children were doing enough when they were in the school system, as you could leave that up to the teachers. They were making sure that they were doing enough to teach your child that particular Grade Level. So I am presuming you trusted that that was being taken care of by the school and the teachers.
You did not have to think about this, as seriously as you do when you are a home educating Mom. I would like to rephrase this question to get you to look at it a little bit differently. So first of all we look at why you are asking this question and how do you measure that against what went before.
Now you are at home maybe some days are not going as well and maybe you didn’t even get to your Maths lesson on that day, as the baby was sick. There are lots of factors that interfere with how you would like to have planned your days, and so this question starts bothering you, how can I be sure I am doing enough?
To answer this question I am going to re-phrase it and ask you “Do you think God thinks you are doing enough?” Ask yourself that question rather, at the end of the day when you might feel you are not doing enough, ask yourself , “If God was looking upon my day today”, which He is, “would it be enough for Him to see that I have taken care of the sick child, helped the others to be patient and realise that we all have to be tolerant of one another, because we are not getting to our lessons, because we are taking care of somebody who is not feeling well. If God looks on that picture He might look at it a little differently to you, and what is happening in your mind. You might be feeling, “Oh, I haven’t done enough” but perhaps ask God. “Has it been enough for You today Lord?” If you ask him that question, then the conviction that you get from that is hopefully direct from Him.
If you have just lain in bed all day and not really seen to the children, and they were fighting with each other, you perhaps just couldn’t face getting up because you had a bad head, or whatever, then you can be going “I am feeling a bit bad now because I could have done more than I did.” Now that question is feasible “Have I done enough.”
When it comes to the children’s actual learning and their getting through the curriculum I would like to share a personal testimony with you. Having raised two children with chronic illnesses there were many, many months that went by when we didn’t open a maths book. I am not advocating don’t do any lessons, not at all, I am just saying that the reality is that neither I, nor my husband Greg, concerned ourselves with the lessons, or asked if we had done the lessons for that day. We new that we were taking care of the one child, who was in a body cast when he had a broken hip, and the other child was having a blood infusion every day.
So, enough for God, in these instances, was not whether we had practised our fractions and done those lessons, what was enough for Him, was had I cared for them. Had I loved them, had I made them comfortable, had I done the best that I could do for them as children? Had they had a good day? The testimony being that, at the end of the day when my children are now adults, it isn’t whether we got to all the learning we could, or should have got to, but it is more about how are they before God in their character? Did we have time to mould their character and teach them about Him, to pray together and read together? It might be that Missy did not go all the way up to Calculus, when she was doing Math-U-See, in fact she stopped just after Algebra, but today she is full time in Oikos Ministries doing Graphic work and helping with customer care, even though she is still severely dyslexic switching her numbers around. She is happily married, being the wife I have trained her to be, that is what is important to God. Have I done enough? Is Missy our daughter being the wife and woman that God needs her to be? She is serving Him with all her heart, she is helping the Moms and families out there that are home educating their children.
She is equipped to serve Him and that is enough, when it comes to numbers and not getting all the way to Calculus, she has married a husband who has the mathematical gift, you see God provides! However this is not to say to neglect your children’s learning. You are being a responsible parent by asking the question, are you doing enough.
If you can think about this differently in the way shared above, change your focus to what God needs you to do while keeping your children at home and home educating them. I am not going to ignore the fact that you need to keep a focus on which Geography, History and Maths level that you want them to achieve. I do understand that these are all real concerns. When you have taken the approach of focussing on how God sees it, you will find that all those other things just fall into place. I come back again to our founding scripture “Seek first the Kingdom of God and His Righteousness and all these things shall be added unto you.”
Our experience is that we had to seek God, we had to trust Him, we couldn’t trust man, if man has told you that your child is not going to live beyond the next couple of years, you have to start trusting Him, look at her now, she is a married woman! So where was my focus? Trusting man and listening to what man was telling me, what should or should not be done, or looking to God and doing what was enough for Him?
So it is not to cancel out the fact that all the other learning opportunities need to be there and continue to happen, it does happen, when you are focussing on God first, He takes care of the other things.