Homeschooling has many blessings, and I never want to discourage anyone from pursuing it. I was homeschooled all my life, and plan on homeschooling my children all of their life as well. But it’s good to stop and examine homeschooling as we can get so caught up in curriculum, lesson planning, and defending ourselves against family and friends that we never allow ourselves to look at it with a critical eye.
As a homeschool community, are we raising “know it all” children?
By this I mean children who are so confident in their beliefs and convictions that they refuse to even listen to a different opinion, and truly feel they have all the answers.
Here are some questions to ponder, particularly for the high school age:
- Does your child respect other people, even though they might not be exactly like your family?
- Does your child constantly belittle and mock the world in general? While admittedly it is a fallen and corrupt place, we should be grieved over the state of the world instead of being angry and cynical.
- Can your child be taught by someone that doesn’t hold the strict conservative homeschool values that you do? For that matter, can you? While I’m not talking about listening to watered down truth, your first critique of a minister or a person wanting to encourage you should not be whether or not they homeschool their children.
- Does your child take pride in the fact that your family is different? Does he not like to be in a group of young people his age, but would rather be apart because he feels he is better then they are?
- Does your child like to gossip about how other people in your family or church are struggling with weaknesses or sins?
Most people homeschool because they believe it helps them draw their children closer to Christ. If however, our children care nothing for those who know not Christ, or those who are weak in the faith, are you really succeeding in your goal behind why you are homeschooling your children?
We need to raise children who have a tender heart. We need to raise children who have a servant’s heart. Developing a servant’s heart starts in the home. Teaching our children to be loving to their siblings, helpful to those younger and older than them – these are all good steps towards teaching them to be loving and kind towards those who need the Lord.
I am certainly not recommending sending your child off to public school. Public school often makes it even more likely that your child will not develop a heart to win souls for Christ. Rather, searching your own heart first to see if you have taught the child these things, and what kind of spirit is present in your home overall. Is it critical, harsh, and discouraging? Or tender, loving, and optimistic?
Set the tone of your home. Guide your children towards the Lord, and pray for them often. Ultimately it is the Lord that has to touch their heart in order for them to acquire the humility and compassion that will cause them to move out in service to the world, not in spite of it .