No matter what schooling path you take for your kids, there are challenges. The trick is knowing what you need to shore up so that nothing falls through the cracks. If you choose to put your kids in public school, you are going to have one set of challenges to overcome. If you choose private school, you will have another set. And, if you choose to homeschool, you will have a different set of challenges. None is better or worse, just different. With homeschooling, one challenge is…learning how not to be isolated and lonely. It is so valuable to stay connected to God and others along your journey.
Isolated at home with few free minutes to ourselves, homeschooling moms can easily get burnt out if we are not careful. And unfortunately, our kids and husbands will suffer as a result. Finding ways to stay connected to a community helps combat burnout. I believe there are three main areas in which we as homeschool moms (or dads/grandparents) must remember to stay connected.
I will take a look at each of these areas in depth in consecutive posts. The first one I will focus on here is how to stay connected to God. And this isn’t a unique struggle for homeschooling families – I believe it can be a struggle for all families pursuing the Lord.
Abiding Leads to Fruit – Why You Want to Stay Connected to God
This past week I was talking with a fellow homeschooling mom about John 15:1-11, and the purpose of remaining with Jesus. As most of you probably know, this passage describes God as the gardener, Jesus as the vine, and we, His people, are the branches.
In verse 5, Jesus says, “I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in Him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.”
The Greek word for abide in this passage is hupomeno, or “to remain through or persevere.” So, if we persevere with Jesus, staying connected with Him, we will bear fruit. And I think that is what most of us desire and need in every aspect of our lives.
Staying connected to Him will make us better spouses, parents, teachers, disciples, and friends. When we truly remain with Him, our families and friends will notice and be grateful!
Be committed to making time with Lord a priority. But how do we do that?…
Additional Benefits of Abiding in Him
When we remain connected with the Lord, not only will be bear fruit, but our days and lives will be transformed. The little frustrations that occur daily, won’t seem as frustrating. For we will be:
- grounded in truth
- filled with the love and grace of the Lord
- embracing His peace
- sensing His presence and strength
- reminded He is a big God who loves us
- able to cast our cares on the Lord much more easily
All of us need each of these every day.
There are so many things that can weigh us down in this world. If we are not regularly spending time in the Word and saturating ourselves with truth, our foundations can be shaken and our cares can consume us.
We desperately need Him as our foundation in life to keep us grounded in peace, strength, and hope.
And yet, the question can still remain, how do I do that when I am surrounded by little ones all day long?!
Further Motivation – You are a Model
When you stay connected to God, you model it to your kids. Of course, you want your kids to have a thriving and daily walk with the Lord. When they see it modeled in you, or know you are getting up early to make your relationship with the Lord a priority, they will emulate you. You are building a legacy your kids will follow.
But…Staying Connected to God is Not Easy
In the busyness of life, we all at times know how hard it is to be still and sit with the Lord, whether we homeschool or not. I know for me, sitting still does not come naturally. There are so many things that pull at our hearts and minds, and we can get so easily distracted.
Most of our distractions we have to do each and every day. The problem comes when we don’t prioritize our time and our relationship with the Lord gets pushed to the side. And for most of us, it usually doesn’t happen intentionally – something comes up unexpectedly, there is a change in schedule, or our kids get sick and our routine is thrown off.
Reconnecting with the Lord can often be challenging.
How to Stay Connected to God and What to do When You Become Disconnected
Distractions and detours will happen, so what are you to do when you find yourself disconnected from the Lord? Or, how do you stay connected in the midst of all the busyness? Here are 5 things to keep in mind to help you stay connected to the Lord:
- Know interruptions will come. They may throw you off for a few days and that’s okay. Just get back to your regular routine when you can.
- Be flexible. Your quiet times may not look the same as when you were single, without kids, not homeschooling, or fill in the blank to your unique situation. Give yourself grace and don’t make it legalistic. Adjust your expectations in certain seasons. For those tough seasons will pass. Perhaps start with just 5 minutes each day.
- Make small changes. Get up earlier, use nap times, keep a Bible open on your kitchen counter, place note cards with Scripture throughout your house. I’ve even written Bible verses on the bathroom mirror to meditate on while brushing my teeth! Find creative ways to fit in time in the Word.
- Sometimes it’s just about being obedient. There will be times when you just don’t feel like getting into the Word. In those moments, just do it anyway. Not to just go through the motions or because you will lose your salvation if you don’t. But, because you WILL be blessed by it. In time, the Lord in His sweetness will meet you, reveal Himself to you, and your heart will change.
- Make it a part of your daily routine. Sometimes the hardest part is just starting. Like anything else that requires discipline, the hardest part can be making the initial changes in schedule, mindset, or routine. Find a time that works for you, and it will become a natural rhythm of your day just like eating, sleeping, or anything else.
God is Able
I hope this has been encouraging to you! Homeschooling moms need to stay connected to God. He is the One who will enable us to:
- bear fruit
- be the women we want to be
- have hope and peace in our heart
- have the strength to meet the demands of each day
- live with joy
- model a life well-lived to our children
Leave a comment below on how the Lord has met and strengthened you as you abided in Him. For more help in staying connected, check out these posts:
- Staying connected to the church body and community
- Staying connected to other homeschooling families
- Finding kindred spirits for your kids