How I'm Homeschooling {Like a Boss} Part 1

This post is focused more on homeschooling from a spiritual standpoint. If you're just looking for practical pointers and helpful information, head over to Part 2. 

Ok, so that may be a reach, but I'm definitely homeschooling these day with WAY more confidence than I ever have before. We are entering our 6th year of homeschool this January, and I can say with conviction that homeschooling is the BEST, HARDEST thing I've ever done.

Over 6 years of homeschooling, I've lost my mind on my children countless times. I've screamed. A Lot. I've miscalculated, over-expected, under-planned, over-planned, overwhelmed, underestimated, overspent, and turned it all over- to God. That last bit was the good bit... the freeing bit. But I still struggle. I failed today, and I will most assuredly fail tomorrow. Yet, I'm growing and learning, and by God's amazing grace, through HIM, I CAN DO THIS. That brings me peace beyond comprehension.

I've never thought of this in this way before. This is a paraphrase of C.S. Lewis from A Grief Observed. We can say we have faith in certain circumstances until those circumstances actually hit- like death, cancer, divorce, financial ruin... but we only KNOW we have faith for those situations once we've practiced faith during them.

If you're new to this, it can be insanely overwhelming, and you can struggle through seasons of worry, fear, comparison, and even guilt. You can wonder if you're doing the right thing and if your kids are going to turn out as great examples of homeschooling OR if you're currently producing Homeschooling Nightmare on {Your} Street. You can question whether you're preparing them rigorously enough or embedding a deep hatred of school. You can fall into comparing them to the public schooled kids down the street or the other kids at the co-op. You can constantly feel like you're on the verge of quitting. There's a TON of self-doubt and fear that plays into home education {and Satan wouldn't have it any other way}. And we ALL fall pray to it. EVERY. SINGLE. ONE.

But there's light at the end of the tunnel. If you're in the first three years of educating at home, you may feel overwhelmed by all of these things. But, I PROMISE you, after roughly 3 years of doing this insane thing, it will easier- usually MUCH easier. But here's some touch news- It never truly becomes easy all together

As you approach your third-fourthish year, it's almost like you break through a wall- a veil is torn- weight is lifted and you realize something: I'm not destroying my children's lives. 

It's a pretty profound and freeing notion. We set OUT to give them the best life, but by way of doing that, we move so counter-culturally that we end up doubting and over-examining every single aspect of home education. No one is harder on a homeschool mom than a homeschool mom. 

But NOW? Now I'm homeschooling like a boss... And by "boss" I mean we have more good days than bad. So- how? 

Experience. Mild amounts of wisdom won through countless hours of on-my-face-in-my-closet prayer and tears by the gallon. Even by sending my kids to school for a month. God's Grace. God's Word. New mercy, every day.

The crux of freedom lies in truly resting in God to do what he says he will do and trusting him to be who he says he is. It's like how C.S. Lewis describes faith during grief in A Grief Observed- faith is something that is imagined until it is practiced. We can say we have faith for cancer, death, doubt, financial ruin, general devastation... but in fact, we only imagine we will have it UNTIL one those things happen. Then we find out- is our faith real? Is it foundational enough and firm enough and deep enough to walk us through a heavy, burdensome trial? 

So maybe your faith in homeschool (or you ability to do it well) has been tested. You imagined that it would be one way and it's turning out differently. You imagined, most likely, it wouldn't be SO HARD

Mama- Walk. It. Out.

These trials, this overwhelming fear and doubt, this unending process of sanctification and trial by fire- keep walking it out. There is relief. It's found in the belief that God is everywhere- like air (Ann V said that first). We just need to breath him in and trust that he's undeniably there, undeniably providing, and undeniably giving life. 

God has been faithful to remind me again and again, that HE called me to this, that HE will equip me, that HIS grace is sufficient to cover my every failure. He reminds me that the "reason" I'm homeschooling is not to keep up with everyone else or surpass the kids in school, it's not to feed my ego or make sure I'm turning out kids that are impressive, and it's NOT to glorify ME and all my awesomeness (insert eye roll).

Oh man, definitely needed this. Super convicting and encouraging! And some really great resources too!

When I keep my eye on His Purpose, His Glory, training up His Disciples, then it keeps the focus off of all my potential failures and instead puts my focus back on the one who is faithful to complete any great work that he starts in us.

Now, that's how I'm homeschooling like a BOSS- from spiritual standpoint anyway. I want to also share how we are choosing to homeschool this 2017-2018 school year from a who/what/when standpoint. That's coming up in Part 2!