As a woman in ministry, who has spoken to many moms groups, one of the most common statements I get from other moms is that they couldn’t possibly homeschool their child because they “don’t get along with them.”
Or they put it this way, “We would just butt heads all day.” “We are too much alike.”
There are many other reasons for putting your kids in school, both good and bad reasons, but this not what I am debating here. This is not a post about why you should homeschool.
Nope, this is a post about choosing to chase after your child’s heart before you loose it for good.
You see, those statements above just make me so sad for the child and the parents.
Listen, sister, I love you and that is WHY I am bringing this up!
You can have a great relationship with your kids! Yes, you can! But it is going to require you making some sacrifices, them making some sacrifices, diligence, pursuit, and a willingness to do what is hard.
If you and your child are at odds with each other, chase after their heart!
Don’t put them in school because you can’t handle their attitude!
Bring them home and train their bad attitude, mend your relationship, work hard at forging a new relationship with your child. And do it now before you have even bigger regrets!
I have had many moms confide in me telling me that they just can’t educate their son/daughter because… and then they go on to share about relationship issues between them.
“They don’t obey me. They disrespect me. They couldn’t learn from me. They are smarter than me and they know it. They would hate me for taking them away from their friends.”
Can I just say, first of all, to the comment regarding taking them away from friends?
Who has your child’s heart?
You, their friends, or the media? Because if it isn’t you, you better take my advice and chase after their heart.
Pursue your child. Love your child. Let them know just how much you love them, that you are willing to do what is HARD.
Listen, knowledge is important, education is essential, BUT relationships are eternal.
God made us for relationships. He made us for a relationship with Him, with our spouse, with our families, and our friends.
I always tell my kids that today they are building their relationships with their siblings for tomorrow.
What I mean is, that it is important that my kids see the value in investing in their relationships with those people who will be in their lives the most… their siblings.
They are the ones you want to have your back. So it’s important that you build strong relationships.
Then, once they have it right in the most foundational relationships that God gave them… they are ready to branch out and develop friends. Friends don’t come before family… EVER or their relationships will not reflect that when they are older.
“I can’t teach my child. We are too much alike. We would fight all day, I’m sure of it.”
I have two things to share about these statements.
1.) Like I said before, if you feel this way, your child is in sin. Why don’t your children obey you? I just don’t understand. The Bible says that children are to obey their parents in the Lord, for this is right. (Ephesians 6:1-3) Have you taught your children to obey the Bible? Do they want to obey God?
If they can’t obey you now, they surely won’t obey God. This has to be a priority to train your children in moms and dads.
2.) By saying, “We are too much alike, I can’t do this.” It’s like you are saying God messed up when He chose you to be your child’s mom. I know you aren’t actually saying that, but come on, it’s like you are. You are essentially saying that God didn’t know what He was doing when He made you mom!
This is NOT the truth. It’s a lie from the enemy. And you have a choice not to believe that lie.
About the “They are smarter than me” comment.
First of all, they may have just been exercising their brain more regularly regarding taking in knowledge and memorizing, but that doesn’t make someone smarter. You would be surprised how fast you will grow as you are challenged to lead your child. Subjects that you thought were SOOOO hard in school when you were a kid, could honestly be a piece of cake now. Especially after you teach it a few times! You just have to be willing to work.
What you are cultivating in your relationship with your child is far greater than giving them knowledge, you leading them in valuing learning and modeling for them that learning is a life-long process.
Not only that, but you can model for them humility and discipline when you don’t know something, and you go find out.
But above all these things which are SO beautiful, you are cultivating a relationship where you ARE an authority in your child’s life, you are their teacher. You are!
Regardless of if our childreen have other teachers or not, they should view you as one of their teachers.
So your kids don’t obey you or respect you, huh?
Please don’t. Just don’t put them in school to get them to obey you. Because it won’t work. Same goes for respect.
This is NOT going to fix your relationship. When you have a relationship issue it doesn’t fix itself by being ignored. You actually have to deal with it.
If you are having problems with your kids obeying you or not listening to you, sign up for my 11 Day Parenting Mini Course here and read this blog post on 3 Things You Can Do to Teach Your Child How to Listen.
So, I hope you don’t hate me. I have had this on my heart to write for over 4 years now. And I finally got the courage to say what God has been impressing on my heart to share with you.
I have failed as a friend by not speaking up when others shared the struggle with me. I just listened, thinking I was being a good friend. But I have been there, at the crossroads myself. Homeschooling isn’t easy. I have seven kids myself. I have had to be diligent and work hard to create the relationships I have with each of my kids, and I am still working. But I chased after their hearts when I felt like our relationship wasn’t good and it has always paid off.
I see clearly the difference between my relationships with my older kids and what others share with me about their relationships with their kids and there IS a difference. There is a fruit, from God. It’s a gift from obedience to His calling to be intentional in engaging my relationships with my kids above all else. This fruit gives me confidence, as well as God’s word, to encourage you to do this. Chase after their hearts. It makes the difference.
I wish I had the guts to be honest and encourage my friends to chase after their child’s hearts. I love their kids! And it’s true that all our sin ever does is create a wall in our relationship with one another and God! It hurts people, it hurts us, and it hurts God.
When their children are disobedient, disrespectful, or defiant, you can see the separation in their relationship with their parent. You can visibly see it, and spiritually sense it. That is because when we sin it creates a barrier in our relationship with God and our relationship with others! Jesus brings restoration.
It’s the same for children. When they sin, their hearts grow away from ours. We have to pursue our child as God does us!
That is what we are called to do as parents. Look at how God pursues and leads his children gently, how He disciplines those He loves, and do the same for our children.
True love of my friends would have been me warning them. Being willing to challenge them biblically and ask them, “Are you running away from a bigger problem that you don’t know how to fix? Or are you doing this because God called you to or are you making this decision because the alternative is too hard and I don’t want to.”
True love of them, would have been iron sharpening iron, which is why I am writing to you now.
I’m not saying to school or not-to-school is the answer. I am not giving education choice advice, but what I am saying is this: EXAMINE YOUR MOTIVES for putting your child in school. If it is because of a relationship problem you have with them, pursue them, don’t put them in school 40-hours-a-week or so and think it will get better without work. Because it will be more work.
We portray God to our Kids
As parents, we are image bearers to our children of the Father in Heaven. If you are called to put your kids in school, that is one thing, that is between you and God. But don’t choose to put your kids in school because you can’t stand being with them. And don’t share that on social media either, because it just makes you look bad and eventually your kids will see it. Then how will they feel?
No, sister, I love you, so I am sharing some tough love right now and being courageous. I have failed too many of my friends in the past and just kept quiet. I told myself, this is their journey, they will figure it out. But biblically God calls us to speak the truth in love. So this is me loving you, and warning you to chase after your child’s heart if they don’t want to learn from you.
I have to warn you because I care more about the hearts of our future leaders, your children, than I do if they understand how to do math the way common core says they have to think.
I care more about your relationship with your kids than I do if you like me or my blog.
If you are having a hard time with a child, chase after their heart and don’t stop until you are restored.
If that means bringing them home, do it.
If that means, taking a trip with them to spend time just the two of you, do it.
The point of this is not to get you to homeschool, although I do believe that homeschooling offers the best opportunity to train up your child in the way they should go and to have the time so desperately needed to grow close relationships.
But, my point is to CHASE AFTER YOUR CHILD’S HEART, no matter the cost.
You won’t regret it. I promise.
DON’T put your kid in school because you butt heads or he/she wouldn’t listen to you. Because if that is true of your son or daughter, you have a bigger issue to deal with and you better engage that above all else.
As moms, we need to remember to put our relationships before pleasing the culture, before what is comfortable, and believe that God gave us everything we need in our tool bag to raise our child–it’s called The Word of God and the Gift of the Holy Spirit.