Inspired by Exposing the Seven Major Blind Spots of Homeschoolers by Reb Bradley
We used to have a magnet on our refrigerator that read, “Homeschool children can socialize just fine with public school kids…as long as they remember to use smaller words and shorter sentences.” It was kind of funny at first. We took it down.
What began to happen, in the privacy of our own home, then amongst our fellow homeschoolers, was that our kids began to make derogatory jokes about kids in the public school system – or more accurately about the public school system in general. What we began to realize is that we were feeding a superiority complex that was broadening the divide between our kids and their neighbors – whom we are commanded to love as we love ourselves.
It is an honor and a privilege to be able to teach your children at home. It is an honor and a privilege to be taught in the home. This arrangement fosters holiness and righteousness and results in blessings for the students and for the families whose relationships are able to grow and prosper rather than just survive. These blessings do not set us apart from, and certainly not above, those who do not homeschool.
You shall emphasize that the privileges, righteousness, and blessings of being homeschooled are meant to serve and bless your neighbors, not set you above them. Jesus, who spent three years teaching and training his disciples in a very unique and privileged relationship, was emphatic about this point. When the disciples saw the power and authority given them to teach, heal, and drive out demons, Jesus reminded them,
“Do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven” (Luke 10:20).
The works did not set them apart from the world. Jesus himself set them apart to do good works that would glorify him.
We are also told that “if anyone wants to be first, he must be the very last, and the servant of all” (Mark 9:35). In fact, regarding the disciples position, Jesus commanded them, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be your slave – just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many” (Matthew 20:25-28). Jesus, our great Lord and teacher, set for us an example of servanthood to follow.
We need to teach our children that blessing and favor are given by God so that we may be a blessing. This is the heart of the covenant; it is what God told Abraham in the beginning. We are freely given so that freely we may give. Yes, homeschoolers are uniquely taught and most often prosper from it. Yes, the success stories that come out of the homeschooling community are inspiring. We also need to be good stewards of the privilege and opportunity, because nothing is automatic, and we need to understand that the blessing is a means and not an end.
How will your children use their quality education? Will they simply better their own lives like the rest of the world does? Will they glory in the praise and reputation that their learning can gain them? I pray not. My prayer is for the people of God to make the most of every blessing so that we can make the most of every opportunity to know God more deeply and make him known more clearly to those around us. What should set a Christian homeschool family – and in fact, any Christian – apart from others is the presence and character of Christ: his love, compassion, humility, generosity, and grace. Let’s teach that above all.
Learn more about the author Pastor Michael Hayward
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