Saturday, July 16, 2011
Begin With the End in Mind
Begin with the end in mind. That’s something I keep thinking about. Being a parent is probably the most challenging thing I have ever done. I have these little people to shape and guide into the big people they are going to become. Where do I begin? At the end. Sounds strange, doesn’t it? But think for a moment. No artist randomly just begins painting. They first get a picture in their mind of what their completed work is supposed to look like. They know what they are creating.
Our Father God is the Great Creator. All life comes from Him. He told Jeremiah the prophet, “Before you were in the womb, I knew you, before you were born, I set you apart;”(Jeremiah 1:5) He also spoke through Jeremiah to the nation of Israel telling them in Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know the plans I have for you…” We should know the plans God has for our children and begin there.
We can ask ourselves several questions. What do I believe are God’s plans for my child(ren)? What natural talents and abilities do they have? What does God say about them? What does God say to do with them?
As homeschoolers, we have chosen to educate our children at home. Part of my reasoning for doing this is because I believe I am shaping the whole person, not just educating the mind. I have to include God’s plans and purpose for my child so I can get a clear picture of what I should be doing and stay focused on the masterpiece that with God's help, I am creating.
How do I determine the plans and purposes? I can pray. I can go to God and ask Him what I should be doing with my kids. I can pray for God to show me what natural gifting and abilities they have been given so I can help them cultivate and develop those gifts. I believe it is also important for me to be sensitive to them and keep my eyes wide open so I won’t miss something they might demonstrate interest in that will ultimately be a part of their beautiful picture. Most importantly, I must study the scriptures to find out exactly what God says that I must do and teach my children in order for them to be a success.
I know I am going to make mistakes. I already have. But I am constantly striving toward that goal of "training my children in the way they should go."(Proverbs 22:6) I believe that whatever they do, and whatever God has for them will ultimately glorify God and be an open door for them to share Jesus with their world.