Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Homeschooling High Schoolers~Overcoming Fear

There's always a face...love it... ;)

"Fear of man will prove to be a snare but whoever trusts in the Lord is kept safe." Proverbs 29:25

When my oldest son was in 8th grade I suddenly became very fearful at the thought of homeschooling through high school. My confidence crumbled. It felt like everything about my homeschool had to change and that I would be overrun with paper work and counting every hour. I felt a loss of independence and a perception that I would have to figure out and measure up to another's possibly impossible standard. 

"When I am afraid, I put my trust in you." Psalm 56:3

I began to pray. I began to seek advice from other homeschoolers. And I prayed some more. Did God still want me to homeschool? Had he lifted this call? The more I prayed and the more I talked to other homeschoolers who had walked the high school path, the more I realized that, yes, I was still called to homeschool. 

Now it was a matter of trust...and closing my ears to the words of doubt around me. You see, though I had not been challenged in my decision to homeschool my kids in years, it started up again when *some* realized that I was not going to put my kids in school when they hit the high school years. 

"They were all trying to frighten us, thinking, "Their hands will get too weak for the work, and it will not be completed." But I prayed, 'Now strengthen my hands.'" Nehemiah 6:9

Slowly hope returned and with it a confidence that "the God who brought me to it would bring me through it." I had to go back to the center of:
~Why I decided to homeschool in the first place, 
~What my goals were,
~What I wanted to pour into my children. 

I also took another look at my curriculum. 
~Was it still meeting our needs?
~Was it still accomplishing our goals?
~Was I able to teach it and were they able to learn from it?

Then I made the appropriate changes and changed it yet again when the need arose. I have never been one to jump from curriculum to curriculum but I did find that crossing over to high school merited some changes. 

For example, I had a Math program I was very happy with but I found I could not teach higher Math from it. It did not touch my own learning style and since I had to do some relearning to help my son, I needed to change to a curriculum that I understood better and taught in the way I learn. 

"He will be the sure foundation for your times, a rich store of salvation and wisdom and knowledge; the fear of the Lord is the key to this treasure." Isaiah 33:6

I have always been amazed at how in times of confusion and dead ends in our schooling that I would pray and pray and the Lord would lead me to just the right resources. I needed to be reminded that the same God that met me right where I was at in the younger grades would continue to do the same. 

At the end of the day, my husband and I (I know I haven't mentioned him yet, but he is surely in the equation!) were still the administrators of our school, we still had the final decision on the education of our own children, and as we put our trust in God our good Shepherd, he would continue to lead and direct us. 

And here we are, 6 1/2 weeks from graduating our firstborn and I can definitely testify that God IS faithful!!

"For you have been my hope, 
O Sovereign Lord, 
my confidence since my youth. 
From birth I have relied on you; 
you brought me forth from my mother's womb. 
I will ever praise you. 
I have become like a portent to many, 
but you are my strong refuge. 
My mouth is filled with your praise,
declaring your splendor all day long." 
Psalm 71:5-8

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