Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Pinterest or Prayer: How to Have an Effective Homeschool Day

I recently shared at our monthly homeschool encouragement meeting at church and thought I would share these thoughts here too.


Don’t you love the title?! My friend Claudia at our church, came up with it! But really, we read that and what do we think? We know in our heart of hearts that prayer is the answer to any struggle we may be having. We might get defensive thinking {huff} I don’t look that kind of stuff up on Pinterest! And, come on – you know I love Pinterest as much as anyone!

But in our mundane we may wonder how we will maintain sanity and get through Math with our distracted learners. Again. Our work will be undone before our eyes, we need to figure out what we are fixing for dinner and oh no, the kids are arguing again, the phone is ringing and the house is a disaster. Please tell me this is not just me?! Friends, we are in this together – and if you are like me – I fail a lot. I want to accomplish more, be happier and more positive to my children, lose it less and need grace to try again tomorrow. Are you with me?

We’re not going to talk specific schedules or anything because we all have enough expectations, comparing, judging and Pinteresting going on to last us forever. We need Jesus. We need His Word. This is what tonight is for.

So, first I have to ask – what is our goal? That is always helpful in knowing why we are doing what we are doing and how to go about it. In the midst of messy, busy, ordinary life – I want to be like wisdom. She is described so beautifully in Proverbs 3. Read the whole chapter when you can, tonight we are going to read vs. 17-18:

“Her ways are pleasant ways and all her paths are peace. She is a tree of life to those who take hold of her. And happy are all who hold her fast.”

Take a deep breath and let that sink deep – I heard such beautiful descriptive words: 

Brings life
A blessing

Mamas – isn’t that what we want desperately? To please God by seeking His wisdom and to be described as beautifully as she is? I want to be a vessel of peace, pleasantness, blessing and life. Notice I said a vessel and not the source. Big difference. A vessel is formed by another and used by another. Yes. So that is my goal. 

A few weeks ago I was listening to a seasoned homeschool mom on line. She shared that she and her children had read Genesis 1 together and her children noticed that the phrase evening and morning was repeated six times. She figured that if these times of day were so important to God that perhaps she should spend some time focusing on those times in her home as well. And, this got me to thinking too. Of course, I think God used that phrase to tell us these were literal days – there was evening and morning and that was day one, etc… But, I wondered more – what else did God’s Word say about evening and morning? And, I have to admit these are two areas we struggle with – we are not as consistent with bed time, rise time, routines, etc… as I wish we were and sometimes it is downright chaotic. So I went hunting for treasure in God’s Word. Let’s take a look together…

God said there was evening and morning – time was measured differently in those days. Sundown to sundown was a day. Since God said evening first, let’s just start there. It strikes me that our evening patterns and decisions can affect our next morning as well! These are very influential times of our day – have you noticed? If I get up later than I hoped it throws my morning out of whack which may indeed throw my whole day. If I do not get my children or myself into bed at a good time it steals peace and restfulness and then I have trouble waking up in the morning, etc…

And even as we talk about Evening and Morning – I think you will have to define what those exact times mean in your home. For me, Morning is before breakfast and Evening is after dinner. That is how I am framing my thoughts in my mind, but again that is going to take many different shapes in many different homes.

Next time: we'll look at Evenings in the Bible.