Monday, May 19, 2008

Why We've Chosen To Homeschool...and other legs of my soapbox

I could go into great detail as to why we've chosen to homeschool. I could list the reasons as divided into categories such as, "Faith", "Socialization", "a well-rounded education" and "Special needs". However, I won't. These are just supporting characters. If I had to sum up our reasoning it would be be found in Psalm 11:3 which asks, "if the foundations are destroyed, what can the righteous do?".

The results of a Barna Group survey revealed that only 9% of "born-again" American Christians have a Biblical worldview. This is sad beyond words. However, before we start shaking our self-righteous fingers and say "tsk tsk", let's be honest. MOST of us have allowed our culture and the status quo to dictate what we believe. Yours truly included. Sure, we may take a devout stand against evolution, abortion etc, but it is the little things that truly make up our character and show what we actually believe. Del Tackett, leader of Focus on the Family's The Truth Project, challenges us with the question "Do you really believe that what you believe is really real?". Well, do you? Is faith in the Son of God, Jesus Christ, as Savior and God and Redeemer your most obvious characteristic? Does it "leak" into EVERY aspect of your life, or is it a Sunday morning, night and/or Wed night practice? Does it dictate what you watch, read, say, willingly hear, feel, think, do and expose your children to?

For many of us, I think the answer is an obvious no. As Americans we have the luxury of becoming too comfortable. We take things for granted and in many respects become lazy. We are too lazy to educate ourselves on what is going on around us. We take the "expert's" word for it. Has anyone bothered to check out why these so-called experts are experts? And by whose standards are they experts? Are they Biblical standards or man-made?

The state, though a God-designed institution, does not have Biblical right to, or authority over, our children. God created another institution for this, it is called the Family. That is not to say that Christian parents should not send their children to public school. I am simply suggesting that we take back control and make the conscious decision of how our children are to be educated. I dare say that in most families, it is just taken for granted that Sally is going to go to preschool and then on to the local public school simply because that is just what people do. The status quo. Very few ever investigate these schools and/or their teachers and the curriculum.

My point? Few Christians would argue that this country was founded on Scripture by people who lived by Scripture. Obviously, that is not the foundation of this country today. Christian America no longer creates its culture. Instead, it has comfortably woven itself into the fabric of a pagan/secular culture, all the while performing its traditions and thinking that is enough. So, the foundation is destroyed. What are the righteous to do?

Well, we could start by building a new foundation. One that is built upon the Rock, to refer to a well-loved children's song. This includes inviting Christ back into every aspect of our lives and decisions. We can "renew our minds" and "be transformed" so we may determine what "God's will is" (Romans 12). Parents have a grave responsibility and it's not to be taken lightly. We've chosen to homeschool so we can do our part in creating a generation of God-fearing, Christ-loving, Word-seeking individuals and thereby shape the future. While I am interested in creating in Helana a love for learning and providing a sound academic foundation, I am more interested in teaching her lessons that will benefit her in eternity. By the Grace of God. While we cannot "save" our children, only their faith in Christ can do that, we can certainly hold up big road signs that point to Him.

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