Thursday, September 18, 2014

the difference

When my oldest daughter was seven years old, D and I embarked on a journey of homeschooling.  Neither one of us knew how, or what we were supposed to do.  All we knew was that GOD was leading us to home school, and for us that's all that mattered. 

At the time that we felt GOD's calling in our lives, our daughters were in private school.  We were drained both mentally and financially.  Paying for private school was NEVER something GOD had planned for us, however we never felt adequate in being able to home school.  So much in fact that when we first heard of it, we thought that anyone who did was completely crazy.

Thinking back to the moments and the circumstances that led up to us home schooling brings tears to my eyes.  Not because I'm hurting, but rather it is HIS loving reminder of how far we have come.  What we have endured as a family, and how HE has molded and shaped each and everyone of us through out this homeschooling journey our family has been on.

For the longest time I struggled for an answer as to WHY I would choose to home school.  After all, isn't sending your kids to school a magical time?  You know the place with the rainbow over it?  Seven whole hours ALONE, where I could get ALL of my stuff done, go wherever I wanted to, and just enjoy being ALL by myself?  Isn't it the place where they make friends, as we all know socializing is the of the utmost importance in a child's life?  So many questions, and demands as to WHY, WHY on Earth would we ever choose this.

To answer the overwhelming questions I always went to my "safe" answer and that was, "GOD has called me to do this, and I will do this until HE tells me NOT to."  Even saying it, I didn't realize what that really meant for me, or my children.  That is until just a few days ago, in our eighth year of homeschooling (taking two years off for public school.)  

HIS Daily Teachings today is reminding me of the message I received loud and clear from HIM through a post on Facebook.  When I read it, tears flooded my eyes, and it was as if the HEAVEN's opened up, and the angels were singing, "SHE GETS IT, SHE FINALLY UNDERSTANDS!!!!" "PRAISE JESUS!!!"

"It's not our job to toughen our children up to face a cruel and heartless world.  It's our job to raise children who will make the world a little less heartless and cruel."  L.R. Knost

I could write several blog posts about the horrible things that my children have witnessed or have had happen to them.  So much in fact, that it pains me that these things have happened to them.  However, this morning HE is lovingly reminding me that HE is my HOPE, through my HOPE I will be able to stand firm in my FAITH.  My HOPE keeps me grounded in my FAITH, and because of that I am able to let go of the past hurts that my family has endured, and I can look to the future with excitement, and truly LIVE in the present.  

HE is telling me the difference in my answer now as opposed to then is: "It's my job, HIS calling for me to breathe, speak and live out my FAITH through HIS words and in seeking HIS vision and loving my children as HE loves them as they are HIS.  HE has placed them into my care to train them up according to HIS will and HIS purpose for their lives.  It is an honor and privilege to teach them HIS words daily, and to be able to spend as much time as I can with each and everyone of my five precious blessings."

HE is telling me that while the world is screaming at me that I'm sheltering them too much, and I'm allowing them to be too soft, HE is letting me know that has been HIS plan and HIS purpose all along for our lives.  HE is wanting me to know that while the world may be questioning my motives, and thinking that I am off my rocker in thinking that I could possibly educate my children better than anyone else, I am filled with HIS blessed assurance that HE is with me, HE is teaching, leading, and guiding me through each and every day.

HE is wanting me to know that the difference of WHY I home school now as to then is because I now understand and know through my FAITH that HE is our HOPE, and HOPE is the anchor to which keeps us grounded in our FAITH.  The difference is then my FAITH was that of a baby CHRISTIAN where I knew the basics, but wasn't growing.  However, through the years of tests, trials, hurts, and tears, HE has grown my FAITH in HIM.   HE has shown me that with HIM, through HIM I will find HOPE, and that will keep me, and hold me fast so that I will be able to stand firm in my FAITH when the waters rise and the storms rage, and I feel as if though I can't hold on any longer.  HE is my HOPE.

"We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure" Hebrews 6:19

In looking back to our families past and all that we have been through, it brings tears to my eyes.  I wish so much with all of my heart that those things didn't have to happen to my children, however what I do know is this.  It's in our past, I can't change it, and I can't go back and do things over.  When I look at my two oldest daughters I am in constant awe of HIS goodness and mercy. All that we have been through what the enemy had hoped would tear our family apart, HE has brought us even closer.  It is because of our HOPE that we have been able to stand firm in our FAITH.

HE is letting me know that it has been HIS plan and HIS purpose all along when HE created me that I would have the potential to be a Mama of five.  Even without having someone to model what being a Mama would look like for me.  HE is wanting me to know that all of those years ago when my first daughter was born HE knew, and that is when HE began to work in me and teach me how to be her Mama.  

"being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus." Philippians 1:6

HE is reminding me this morning that I was chosen on purpose for HIS purpose to be their Mama.  Each and everyone of my children are uniquely placed into our family, and each of them have such beautiful, warm, loving, kind, and giving spirits.   HE is wanting me to know that the difference of my answer as to HOW is that while GOD is leading me, it is because I have realized my potential that HE has placed in me.  It has been through that realization that I have allowed HIM to work in me and through me, and NOT only in my own walk, but in my children's as well.

The difference of my answer as to WHY I have the FAITH that I do is because HE is SOVEREIGN! HE has planned each and every step that I would take in my role as Wife, Mama, and HIS follower.  Through each step of my journey, whether I realize it or not HIS timing, and HIS provision have been perfect for my life.  Even in the times where I have felt as if though HE didn't hear my prayers, HE has, and HE answers them in HIS timing NOT mine.

"As for God, his way is perfect:  The Lord’s word is flawless;  he shields all who take refuge in him." Psalm 18:30

Today I am so incredibly thankful to know that I don't have to have everything figured out.  I am thankful to know HIM, and to walk with HIM daily, and see what HE is doing in my life, and my children's lives.  I am so incredibly thankful that I have chosen to make JESUS the center of my life, and KEEP HIM as the center of my life.  I am thankful that HE has chosen me to be mama to my precious five, and wife to D for almost sixteen years now.  Today I am running straight to HIS arms, and allowing myself to be caught up in HIS amazing love and grace once again.  Today is a new day, and it is HIS gift to me, and for that I will rejoice and be glad!

"The Lord has done it this very day; let us rejoice today and be glad" Psalm 118:24

Dear Friends, it is my prayer that you will come to know JESUS.  I pray that you will seek HIM, and HE will reveal your potential to you.  I pray that you will know and be comforted in knowing that HE loves you, and that while you may not understand WHY right now things are happening the way they are, that you will know that HE is our HOPE, and through HOPE you will be able to stand firm in your FAITH that HE has it all worked out for your own good.  I pray today that you will have the courage to seek HIM, and allow HIM to work in you and through you.  I pray that you will know the difference in knowing that your life isn't by chance but rather through HIS purpose, on purpose, and that you too have potential within you.  

Much love, and prayers,

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