Wednesday, August 29, 2012

A Prayer for Our School Year

Heavenly Father,

     I can honestly look back at this first week of school and say it was the best one yet!  Just like when you formed the Heavens and the Earth and put everything in its perfect order, I know and have known,  that you also put the right kids with me.  I love the fresh perspective they give me every day.  I can’t wait to see what they will teach me tomorrow.  I sat down to be their teacher today and walked away knowing and seeing a little more of the fruits your Spirit provides in me.
    Each year that I get with my children offers me a chance to mold them, pray for them, and love them.  I get the privilege of watching all of their firsts.  I get to see them overcome hurdles and celebrate victories.  It gives me one more year to make up for lost time, my mistakes, my ignorant deeds of the past and other regrets.  This beginning week I get to pray all of that negativity away and strive to hit the mark once again.  With you I can do anything I set my heart to do.  I must just trust and obey and never cease to remember that you love these children even more than I do.  So, when I’m at a loss and don’t know the answer, You do. 
   Thank you God, for 13 years now, I have been a wife and mother first.  Thank you for giving me the courage to home school and for helping me those first years when I was so unsure.  Those days still come now and then, but not as often.  Because when they do I know where to go for guidance.  You have never failed me.  Thank you for a loving, hard-working husband that has supported me from day one and has also never let us down, but has sacrificed and shown his love with actions as well as words. 
    Homeschooling is hard work and sacrifice, I’ve heard it said.  But I think it would have been a much bigger sacrifice to have gone a different road.  Please, Father, continue to bless us and help us with our days of learning together.  Help me to continue to grow in your ways and to show my kindness, patience, gentleness, self-control and all of Your other attributes more and more.  Help the kids to learn all of the important facts and information that is so crucial for their success.  I pray that they look back at their time of growing up and being educated at home and consider it a blessing in their lives.  But, above all Father, help them to learn about You and follow You all the days of their lives.  Forgive me for my wrongs and help me to make them right by your power.  In Jesus’ precious name I pray, Amen.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

The Golden Rule...When it's Hard

    I have to admit this, throw it out there and take my chances that someone else can relate.  Earlier this week I was really struggling.  Struggling so much I felt like giving up on some of the things that are exceedingly the most important things in my life.  I was spent and so tired of trying and feeling defeated.  I was just so frustrated.
     Obviously, I was right where the enemy wanted me.  Isn’t that where he does his best work?  I know that and I prayed and had a day of reflection.  I confessed that I was struggling to others and asked for them to pray too.  Then that day I felt like I had the answer.  When you feel like someone just won’t treat you the way you want to be treated, what would Jesus do?  He would love them with action.

photo credit:  Original digital art by Abbey Kreger

“In everything, therefore, treat people the same way you want them to treat you, for this is the Law and the Prophets.  Matthew 7:12

     I know, very kindergarten, right?  But I’m here to say that…y’all… works!  I prayed and worked on my attitude all day and I did just what this verse told me to that day.  It makes no sense to a human.  What the human side of me wanted to do was cry out that I was tired, I was frustrated, you are selfish, you don’t do this, you don’t say enough, you don’t give enough!        Instead, God truly changed my heart and I simply shared an embrace and genuinely made a choice to care that day.  I made someone feel special, I gave love.  In return, guess what?  I got back that love in just the way to reassure me that all is well.  I know now that I am treasured in so many ways.  So simple is Jesus, so wise.  His yoke is easy and his burden is light, I’ve found it so.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Letting Jesus Take the Wheel

Trust in the Lord with all your heart
    and lean not on your own understanding;
 in all your ways submit to him,
    and he will make your paths straight.
Proverbs 3:5-6

 At the beginning of the summer I decided after much prayer, and what I felt was a prompting from God to go for it, to take on another role in my life.  I’ll have to admit I worried at first.  I already wear a lot of hats on this head, and so I did the only thing you can do when worry creeps in…I prayed and let it go.  I knew that my usual planning time for school was going to be interrupted by this new chore, I didn’t know that our minister of more than 13 years and my boss was going to be leaving at the end of the summer right when school begins.  

    The great thing is, God knew all of this and before I knew it I had friends joining together and planning school for my children, right under my feet. We are going to band together and make it a group effort this year.  I had our regular co-op offering classes that were really going to help me out, core classes that my kids wouldn’t enjoy as much if they had to do it alone at home.  Before I knew it, all of their subjects were covered and I felt like I just sat back and watched it all happen.  Yes, I did have to plug in some things, but it was effortless.  It was God.
     Wow, did I learn a valuable lesson.  I get hung up on details.  I’m one of those people that feels that if I don’t do it, it might not get done.  I think you call them control freaks?  Yes, that’s me.  So, letting go and letting God has been a long lesson for me and I’m not quite finished learning it yet.  But, what a huge step it was this summer.  That’s why I’m writing it down.  I don’t ever want to forget what the  power of letting go feels like.  I want to cherish letting God take control and watch Him work.
     I’m ready to watch my son and daughter flourish under His wings this year.  This has all shown me that this is the year to go with the flow.  I’ve tried many things as a homeschool mom of 8 years now, but that is one I haven’t tried yet.  So far it’s going so smoothly that the control freak in me says “DON’T TOUCH IT, YOU’LL MESS IT UP!”  Yes, I believe I’m convinced that this school year is going to be the best one yet!