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"I Can't Wait For My Kids to Go Back to School..."

After visiting a church recently, my wife and I had a chance to speak to one of the pastors. He talked to us about his family and his three boys, whom he clearly loves. But, with only a short time left before the school year started he said, with almost an exasperated sigh, “I can’t wait for my kids to go back to school.” After talking further I better understood that the structure and business of their family’s life made the kids being home full time incredibly difficult.

After reflecting on this conversation I couldn’t help but feel something was a little off, as Christians parents are supposed to be the primary guides raising their children throughout their lives. Parents help to bring them not only to physical maturity, but also spiritual and emotional maturity. Yet, when children are out of the home the majority of their waking days and spend most of their time under the influence of others, this is incredibly hard to navigate.

I realized that many people, Christians included, have fallen into the cultural patterns and expectations of what raising children requires. There has been a paradigm shift in the culture that children impede on the rest of our lives: our work, our hobbies, our friends, our time, etc. This, however, is the exact opposite of how it should be, where it is our family that is to come first and parents ask themselves if other obligations are impeding their primary responsibility and joy to raise their children.

I won’t be so naive as to say that parents don’t ever feel worn out and like they need a break, and that is why a supportive family structure and schedule is so important, but if parents are always trying to escape their children then something is certainly off. Dr. Jordan Peterson has a rule: do not let your children do anything that makes you dislike them. This seemingly obvious principle is rarely exercised when children are seen as a burden; they will not be treated in a way that emphasizes either their worth or their responsibility, thus they will develop into people that are not enjoyable to be around.

If children are acting out in a way that goes against the respect they are expected to show and the values that are being modeled, then the book of Proverbs is quick to point to the rod of discipline as a saving grace for our children. When we turn them over to their own desires, they grow up in a state of perpetual immaturity that makes them difficult to be with. But when we send them off, day after day, to schools filled with other immature children modeling for each other the depths of their immaturity, what do we expect is going to happen?

The decision to homeschool is not one that is easy to make. Many families who see the need, haven’t fully realized that they may have bought into the wider culture’s unhealthy understanding of the “burden” of children, and thus they are moving into the right format of education for their family without having the right mindset for their family.

When parents learn to homeschool well, it includes not only the right skill sets, but also developing and fostering the right mindset so that they can embrace the time with their children as a gift and learn to truly enjoy them and the benefits of seeing them grow to maturity. At the Homeschool Mastery Group, I get to help parents develop not only the right skills but also the mindset and lifestyle that is going to help them have a fulfilling and transformative homeschooling experience.

I’d love an opportunity to chat with you and your family about how to make this powerful shift and begin seeing a more fruitful and enjoyable homeschooling experience than you ever imagined possible.

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