As homeschoolers, our homeschool legacy is also our family legacy. The two are inextricably intertwined. But, to be successful, it is important that we keep the end-goal in mind.
But, what is our end-goal? Is our ultimate goal for our kids to excel in academics, sports or the arts? Is it to raise child prodigies and geniuses? Is it for our children to grow up rich and successful in the eyes of the world? Is our end-goal one which results in comparing ourselves to others? Do we see our children’s success as a means of proving our own self-worth and abilities as home educators? As homeschool parents, we are not above losing our focus and falling prey to these and other such trappings.
The world prides itself on building a life of self-gratification, indulgence, and material possessions. That’s not to say by any means that all material things are bad. On the contrary, as any loving father does, our Heavenly Father blesses us with many wonderful things which He means for us to enjoy and share generously with others. But they are not the end-all. No. As His children, He calls us to far loftier ambitions, ambitions of love and writing a life story based on things eternal. Keeping ourselves focused on this mission can help us make better choices in building our homeschool legacy, and the process while not easy can be as simple as 1-2-3:
1. Start with the End in Mind.
Determine what kind of legacy you want to leave your children. Then picture your family twenty years down the road. Now ask yourself what changes you need to make mentally, spiritually, relationally, and maybe even academically, to make that happen.
2. Invest in People, not Things.
What are your long-term goals for your kids? Our primary goals were for our boys to develop a solid, loving relationship with their Savior, each other, and with us. We wanted to instill a love of learning and country in our children while teaching them America’s true history. Additionally, we wanted to teach them to be good citizens, men of character, strong leaders, and caring individuals. We invested our resources in growing our sons academically and in their God-given talents. But, truthfully our most valuable investments were by far the time, love, and eternal truths we richly poured into them, each of which contributed to our family’s overall well-being and ultimately our family legacy.
3. Make More Deposits than Withdrawals.
The financial health of a business reveals itself in its ability to deposit more money than it withdraws. Similarly, the more emotional deposits we make in our family’s “account,” the more healthy, successful, and beautiful our legacy is likely to be.
1 Corinthians 13: 4-13 does a fantastic job of teaching us about the power of love while at the same time providing us with an ideal springboard from which we can build a beautiful family legacy. Linda Ellis’ powerful poem, The Dash, does so as well. 1 Corinthians 13 for Homeschool Moms, whose author is unfortunately unknown, continually reminded me to stay focused and keep my priorities straight. Above all, it was God who proved time and again that as hard as I might try (and sometimes failed), it was His unfailing love that truly helped us grow a beautiful homeschool legacy. Here’s to You and Yours!
1 Corinthians 13 for Homeschool Moms
Though I teach with the best of skills,
But do not have love,
I am just drawing attention to myself.
And if I have experience and knowledge of all the best techniques,
And test results proving my effectiveness
But do not have love,
I am wasting my time.
And if I work hard, sacrificing all my money, my time, and my energy
But do not have love,
It adds up to nothing.
The loving teacher is patient with her children, allowing them to learn
According to their God-given temperaments and developmental rates.
She is kind, treating her children respectfully.
She does not compare herself to others.
She does not brag about her accomplishments and is not smug
About teaching her own children.
She does not try to be like anyone else but acts appropriate to the way
God made her.
She is not irritable and pushy and insistent upon making her children
Fit into her lesson plans.
She is more concerned with promoting truth and beauty than
With criticizing those who don’t.
She perseveres in developing her own character, believing that God’s ways
Are always best. She is not a quitter.
Love never fails.
If there are creative ideas, they will be replaced.
If there are great curricula, they will be superseded.
If there are effective techniques, they will be improved.
All that we know now is only a part.
Only later will God reveal education at its best.
When I was a child, I had unrealistic expectations.
As an adult, I know better.
Now abideth faith, hope, and love.
But the greatest of these is love.