Singing His Promises
Becky Cooke and Diane Kummer, HSLDA High School Consultants

When we reflect back on our personal homeschooling days, we remember the “thrill of victory and the agony of defeat!” Can anyone relate? We enjoy traveling to homeschool conferences and meeting many of you. Some of you share with us, “You two are so real—you’re just like us.” It’s true, we are. That’s how we know that you may need an encouraging word. More than likely, there will be days during the school year when you feel discouraged, weary, fearful, or depressed. When you do (notice we didn’t say “if you do”—are we pessimists or realists?), we hope you keep in mind some basic truths that will reorient you and keep you going. The following thoughts are based on familiar hymns and choruses.

In His Time

Beginning the school day by lifting your voices in prayer and praise will definitely cause your family to rejoice in the One who lays out your paths. In all of your circumstances, the Lord will lead you according to His timing. Usually, stress increases when we run ahead of the Lord’s timing and fall headlong into the worries of the future, but peace and joy reign when we cry out:

“In His time,

In His time,

He makes all things beautiful in His time.

Lord, please show me every day,

As You’re teaching me Your way,

That You do just what you say,

In Your time.”

How Firm a Foundation

When something gives way (the science experiment blows up, the algebra lesson is beyond your capabilities to decipher, your teen’s hormones are going in the opposite direction of yours) and you want to quit, remember that your foundation is unshakeable. The Lord keeps His promises, and He will never leave you nor forsake you. His strength will undergird you on days when sleeping in sounds better than getting up or when friends ask once again why you are homeschooling high school. Don’t grow weary, but persevere and know that it’s during the hard times that we grow deep roots.

“Fear not I am with thee; O be not dismayed,

For I am thy God and will still give you aid.”

Breathe on Me, Breath of God

On some of “those” homeschool days, a fresh breeze would be Heaven-sent, wouldn’t it? As you anticipate presenting American history in a fresh way, think of a creative method to teach Shakespeare, or find another source of help for the Spanish lessons that have you puzzled, ask the Lord for a brand new perspective. He delights in proving Himself to be your Provider, Sustainer, and Miracle Worker! You are doing a mighty work. Trust the Lord to supply you with His own version of manna from Heaven.

“Breathe on me, Breath of God, fill me with life anew,

That I may love what Thou dost love and do what Thou wouldst do.”

Joyful, Joyful, We Adore Thee

There may be times when we allow our joy to be sapped by circumstances—in the case of homeschoolers, often it’s too much activity and too little time. Slow down, weed busyness out of your life, and make a conscious effort to walk in joy. Take time to carve out the opportunity to begin your day soaking in a couple verses from God’s word, and thank the Lord for your many blessings. Spread joy in your home by remembering to encourage your teen each day. Discover again the beauty in a sunset, the delight in surprising your teen with a hug or the wonder of a spider spinning a web. Joy is a gift of the Spirit, and it will transform you.

“Thou art giving and forgiving, Ever blessing, ever blest,

Wellspring of the joy of living, Ocean depth of happy rest.”

O the Deep, Deep Love of Jesus

For some of you, disappoint fills your heart. With all of your efforts, you are tempted to ask, “Where’s the fruit?” Your teen may lag academically, lack spiritual maturity, or excel in foolishness. Your relationship with your teen may be in tatters. Where’s the hope? Your hope is dependent on the depth of your understanding of the love of Christ for you—and for your teen. When you are convinced that the Lord loves you lavishly, completely, and unconditionally, you’ll want to love your teen in the same way. You’ll be able to love the unlovable. You won’t shy away from training and correcting, but you’ll do so with tenderness, compassion, and humility—as a fellow sinner in need of grace. None of us have the power to do this on our own, but the Lord can help us do the impossible! (Memorize a verse or two on the love of God; for example, Ephesians 3:14-19, Romans 5:8, or Psalm 89:1-4.)

“O the deep, deep love of Jesus, Vast unmeasured, boundless, free!

Rolling as a mighty ocean, In its fullness over me,

Underneath me, all around me, Is the current of Thy love;

Leading onward, leading homeward, To my glorious rest above.”

Blest Be the Tie That Binds

Even though our homeschooling days are behind us, we continue to be bound together with you in Christian love. As you are encouraged, turn and encourage one another. The result will be a lighter spirit and joy-filled heart.

“Blest be the tie that binds our hearts in Christian love;

The fellowship of kindred minds is like to that above.

We share our mutual woes, our mutual burdens bear;

And often for each other flows the sympathizing tear.”

Day by Day and With Each Passing Moment

We hope during this school year these truths will pop into your minds when you most need to be heartened. The Lord sees the outlay of love and sacrifice you are making in your teens’ lives. The Lord’s grace will be there just when you need it.

“Help me, Lord, when toil and trouble meeting,

E’re to take, as from a father’s hand,

One by one, the days, the moments fleeting,

Till I reach the promised land.”

Focus on eternity, don’t give up, and the Lord will help you reap a harvest!

Becky Cooke and Diane Kummer serve as High School Consultants for Home School Legal Defense Association’s (HSLDA) Homeschooling Thru High School Program. They are nationally known speakers and authors on high school topics. As former homeschool moms whose adult children have graduated from college, Becky and Diane can relate to your homeschool joys and challenges. Their desire is to help you homeschool high school with excellence. Most of all, they pray that your homeschooling years are full of delight knowing that your investment in your teens is seen and rewarded by the Lord. Benefit monthly from their expertise by signing up to receive their free monthly email newsletters, www.hslda.org/highschool, on topics of interest to those teaching high school at home.
Adapted from HSLDA’s Homeschooling Thru High School Newsletter September 2008 http://www.hslda.org/elert/archive/2008/09/20080904101832.asp
Author: Becky Cooke
Published in: Arizona Home Education Journal
Published on: Aug. 1, 2013
Reposted with permission