Confessions of a Homeschooling Mom

You’ve heard it said, “Confession is good for the soul”, and today reader, I want to confess to you for my own good, and perhaps for yours. It’s nothing sordid – like, teaching Darwinism is supported by the fossil record ;-) – no, nothing like that. But it is scandalous, none-the-less.

In Front of God and Everybody

I flirted and messed around…right in front of my children. It wasn’t with another man. It was worse. I flirted with a false god, an idol I embraced as the savior of my children. And its name was…

Homeschooling

You heard me right. When my children were little, I went into homeschooling believing that it would save my children from the evils of this world (as embodied in the “godless” public school system) and make them really awesome Christians. My idol, homeschooling, would safely shepherd my childrens’ spiritual lives and would save me from worries about bad influences and rebellious stages.

The Belief Behind the Belief

Now, if you had asked me if I really believed that, I would have denied it on the spot. I knew that no training or parenting technique could replace Christ’s finished work on the cross, or the Holy Spirit’s contemporary work to show my children their need of Christ. But deep in my heart, I secretly (and idolatrously) believed that homeschooling would somehow help the Holy Spirit along a little. Yeah, I know how that sounds.

Reality Check

Eventually, we did place our children in public school for their middle- and high-school years. And guess what? We soon saw rebellion, anxiety, depression, etc, etc. Was it the public school’s fault? Would it have been different if we homeschooled, or homecolleged (is there such a thing?) our kids all the way through adulthood?

Who Is to Blame?

No. Public schools weren’t to blame for these behavior issues; my kids’ own hearts were to blame. The Bible teaches that we are all born with broken, depraved hearts that drive us to seek our own will apart from God. Public school was just the avenue God chose to reveal this to my kids. Those years were difficult as they wrestled with God and their need for Christ in their hearts. But there in public school, they saw their own inner darkness, and their complete inability to save themselves from it.

Christ Alone

Me? I have this darkness in my own soul, too. While homeschooling can be a wonderful option for educating children, it can’t save them from their sin. I had secretly hoped it would and I needed to confess that hope to Christ as the idolatry that it was. Only He can save my children. Christ, plus nothing.

What do you secretly hope will save your children? Leave me a comment if you like.

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5 thoughts on “Confessions of a Homeschooling Mom

  1. Thanks for your honesty. My sister and her husband believe home schooling is the only way to save their children. They even preach it! Obviously Christ is the only one who can do that! I home school my kids too. But I home school my son because he doesn’t learn well with large groups and my daughter because if I home school one, I may as well home school them both. It would be lonely to be alone for home school. But I will listen closely to what God wants for their future schooling. Maybe public school, maybe private school, maybe home school. I want to say, that with home school, we’ve had many opportunities to talk about Christ and to remind them about the time they asked Jesus into their hearts. And to disciple them as they grow in Christ. And it was my privilege to lead them in the prayer of salvation when they were only 5 years old.

    As with everything in our lives, it is about motive. And God sees our motives – more than we do ourselves!

    • Julie,
      Thank you so much for reading my post and for leaving a comment. I so believe what you said about God knowing our motives…that is so paramount in all that we do. I am grateful I had the opportunity to homeschool my children. I believe we planted seeds of truth in their hearts during those years that is now up to the Holy Spirit to water and bring to maturity. As well, I love the relationship with each of my children that homeschooling them fostered.
      God bless you as you homeschool your children. It is a difficult, but rewarding endeavor. God will lead you as you seek Him for your childrens’ educational future.
      Dawn

  2. Dawn,

    While I obviously think home schooling is the best option for my own children, I completely understand where you are coming from. So many times I put ideals ahead of Christ – and I’m continually having to pause and reorient my thinking.

    Romans 12:2 reminds me not to be like the ‘world’, that I am transformed by the renewing of my mind, and then I will know God’s good and perfect will.

    The ‘world’ tells me that if I can control my kids enough, avoid bad influences, teach them all the right things, then they will be happy, healthy, and well-adjusted children. Thank you for reminding me that only Christ can accomplish those things.

  3. Dawn,

    I give ANY parent credit for homeschooling their children! It is a task that I was unable to undertake for various reasons…first and foremost, who would save ME?!!! Ahhh!

    Seriously, though, it is true that some put this method of teaching as high priority, but I never thought it as idol worship…until now. But, let’s not throw the baby out with the bathwater, right? Homeschooling has it’s many benefits and rewards and I have seen the result of higher intelligence because of it. In our own hearts we can apply this lesson to many things in our lives and belief systems.

    Thanks for driving the point home!

    • Kathy,

      Thank you for your response; I appreciate it.

      You are so right in stating that this lesson is applicable to many things in our lives. Any thing can become an idol; this was mine. I am so grateful for a great God who even though this was an idol in my heart, He used our season of homeschooling to be a good thing for our family.

      Dawn

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