Saturday, February 02, 2008

Something important you should know

There have been a couple of comments in response to posts lately that I sound different (in a good way, I'm going to assume! lol). I've been thinking about these comments, and I do agree. I have felt different. I don't know if it's been noticeable to my husband or to my children, but I hope so. I do know that it's felt very different inside me.

Now, there is something important that I want everyone to know: I am not doing this alone. The only explanation for what you are seeing/reading and what I am feeling is God.

For the first time in more than 2 years, I want to be around other people and I want my kids to be around other people. I still have concerns about how the children's behavior may be judged, but I feel strong enough to handle that. Not strong in myself, but God gives me the strength. For the first time in almost 6 years, I feel confident about the direction our homeschool is taking. If the children need something academically or otherwise in order to fulfill the purpose God has planned for them, He will guide me toward it. I am trusting God.

"Am trusting" is the key here. There have been a few times over the last couple of weeks where I could feel the self-doubt creeping in, the negative thoughts coming up, feeling the overwhelming pressure starting to take over. But I kept trusting... it's in the present tense. I couldn't decide in early January to trust in God and be done with it. I have to actively trust Him, and keep trusting Him every single day. Some days, I've had to trust Him every few minutes! :)

So if you're noticing difference in me, it's because I am trusting God. I am trusting that God has good things planned for me and my family. I am trusting that God will direct my paths as long as I seek His will. God is faithful, even though I was angry with Him. God is faithful, even though I didn't talk to Him for a very long time. God is faithful, even when I didn't understand anything and questioned Him all the time.

For the first time in more than 2 years, I want to read the Word, talk to God, and study my Bible. I want my children to pray before dinner, and I want to hear them talking about God and asking me questions about God. For the first time in more than 2 years, I feel like He is near to me again and I am near to Him! It's a very good feeling!

The thing that has had me working on this post all week is the fact that, to me, it sounds like I'm boasting. If, in my excitement to share the huge differences that I'm feeling within me, I sound like I'm boasting, please be assured that I am not. None of this is my own doing at all. I am just not that strong! LOL I've tried to do all of this under my own strength over the last couple of years, and it's impossible. And I consider myself a fairly strong and determined person. If you've noticed a change in me, you have to understand that it's the power of God!

I'm going to go ahead and send this, praying it comes across the way I am wanting it to come across! I nearly didn't post it at all because the last couple of days I've felt much less confident and quite nervous as we approached the RDA which started yesterday. I thought that maybe it would be a lie to post everything that I said above, since I'm not feeling quite as peaceful as I had when I started writing it. But I decided that it's OK. God is still here helping me through the performance anxiety of having to be assessed on tape with my children! And when I've been nervous or anxious, it has given me extra time to practice TRUSTing in Him. So here goes...


The Glasers said...

Yes, you are not imagining this. You are starting to be the Serene Madonna (page 33) described by Charlotte Mason because your faith fortifies you (page 35):

"Faith.––Other ingredients go to the making of the delectable compound we call 'masterly inactivity,' but space will allow me to speak of only one more. That highest form of confidence, known to us as faith, is necessary to full repose of mind and manner. When we recognise that God does not make over the bringing up of children absolutely even to their parents, but that He works Himself, in ways which it must be our care not to hinder, in the training of every child, then we shall learn passiveness, humble and wise. We shall give children space to develop on the lines of their own characters in all right ways, and shall know how to intervene effectually to prevent those errors which, also, are proper to their individual characters."

This is the beauty of homeschooling in a slower, sane fashion. You have time to process and think about many important things, instead of chaotically rushing from must-do thing to another must-do thing.

Like you, Jennifer, for many years, I did not slow down enough to think about God, much less process what He was doing, much less trust Him. Life has gotten so much better since I began really trusting in Him--that he is in control and, even if I misjudge His cues, everything will be okay. The relationship WE are trying to build with our kids is the very same one HE is trying to build with us. I think I am in old stage 4 with God right now. LOL!

A really GREAT book from AO Year 8 for ME (and David) is Desiring God from John Piper! For me, the movie that taps into this is Amazing Grace (the one about William Wilburforce). WOW!!!

JamBerry said...

Niffercoo, it comes across the way you intended, and I'm celebrating for you and with you!

lisaquing said...

Jen, I cannot say how encouraging it is to hear this! The realizations that faith is an ongoing daily act and that one's strength comes from God alone are such important and energizing realizations! I am so excited and joyful to hear this from you. God is good!

Jan said...

Sounds like things are going so well. I'm happy for you, and how far you feel you've come in your walk with the Lord. God definitely is good!!!