Sunday, March 16, 2014

Let's try this again...

Well, it's been a difficult few days since that last post. I can't tell you the number of times I considered coming here to delete it. Not only because I don't want myself to look bad (who does?!) but it's hard to have stuff "out there" about Austin, not just because I don't want to embarrass him if he ever comes across this blog, but also because of the homeschool naysayers out there. "See? This is why homeschooling is so bad - she hasn't done 2 of the basics with her high school Junior in 2 weeks!!"

Perceptions. Why do I care so much what other people think?

Anyway, today during church, our music minister (who is really hot, have you ever seen him? Oh yeah, he's my husband! Hee hee - had you going there for a minute! LOL) chose a song for the offertory called, "Let the Praises Ring" by Lincoln Brewester. One of my favorite songs, very upbeat and simple! Fun song.

And I started crying.

"Oh Lord my God in You I put my trust
Oh Lord my God in You I put my hope"

Those are the first two lines of the song, and they repeat themselves. Just enough time for me to really dwell on them. And realize (again ) how badly I have been failing in this area when it comes to homeschooling, and especially when it comes to Austin.

Then comes the first lines of the chorus:

"In You In You I find my peace
In You In You I find my strength"
The peace I'm looking for (and the joy?!)?? The strength I need to explain the difference between a line and an angle ONE. MORE. TIME. (or a hundred more times?) ?!?! It's not found within myself. It's not found in anything I can do. It's found in GOD. I know this. Duh.
So the tears are welling up, and then the next part of the chorus comes on:
"In You I live and move and breathe"
That line hits me upside the head like a ton of bricks. I first really came to know it when my daughter joined a dance company a few years ago called MOVE, and this line/verse (Acts 17ish) was part of their foundation. I commandeered it with my running/training when I was coming back from an injury and realized that I had been using my training as a way to deal with the stress in my life, instead of focusing on God. Running from my problems instead of running to God.

So I'm still processing that and the second verse begins: 

"Oh Lord my God to You I give my hands
Oh Lord my God to You I give my feet
Oh Lord my God to You I give my everything
Oh Lord my God to You I give my life"
By the end of the verse, and the return of the chorus, the tears are freely flowing. I have used this song before (music is SO important to me in so many different ways, and I've probably mentioned before how God uses music, and not just Christian music, to speak to me) but with my running. And all of those changes in the last 2.5 years have been simply amazing! I have found such joy in training and I no longer use it to get away from my problems, but as a time to focus my thoughts and improve my mental and physical and emotional conditioning, so I can better handle my problems. I have learned, I think, to trust God that if the plan I have going for my training gets derailed it's because He has a better plan for me (a different race? a better experience? saving me from myself?). I've learned to give Him my hands and my feet and my everything and He has blessed me time and again. I am stronger and healthier than I have ever been and my training has gone so much better than I could have hoped. 

So why shouldn't I apply this same notion to homeschooling? Why is it so hard to trust God that if the plan I have going for homeschooling gets derailed it's because He has a better plan for me? For Austin? For Riley? For Reece? It didn't happen overnight for me to do that with my training. In fact, it was pretty ugly there for awhile. But the more I practiced, the easier it got. The more I trusted, the more it became second nature. It's like a spiritual workout.

Do I like it that Austin struggles academically? No. Is it fair? In my opinion, no. Austin is a genuinely nice kid with a strong work ethic and lots of determination! Why does everything have to be so hard for him?
I don't think I ever shared the story from Tuesday night. Hubby was working late, and I was getting ready to leave for the girls and me to go to dance class. Austin came into the kitchen where I was busy straightening things up. He said, "Shouldn't you be getting ready for dance class?" I said, "Yes, but I want to clean up the kitchen first so it isn't a mess when Dad gets home from his long day." Austin said, "I got this! You go get ready for dance!" and he proceeded to clean up the kitchen for me. How many other 17.5 year old boys do you know who would be so thoughtful and responsible? Let alone one with autism?! 

I constantly want Austin to trust God. And sometimes it makes me sad when Austin talks about having a hard time trusting God because things are so hard all the time. But what sort of a role model am I for trusting God to take all of Austin's challenges and turn them into something beautiful?? (Yeah, that's another song LOL)
So I'm glad I didn't delete that post from Friday. And I'm glad I went to church this morning. And I'm glad God inspired my husband to play that song. And I'm glad tomorrow is a new day and a new week and I can start (again!) practicing trusting God and putting my hope in Him when it comes to homeschooling Austin (and the girls). After all, He loves Austin way more than I do! 

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