Friday, October 21, 2011

A Vapour in the Wind


I was up early this morning. 3.45am to be precise. My husband had a meeting in York at 7.30am, it is just over a 2 hour drive from where we are. I am a bit nervy with regards to long journeys as my fathers death is still a too fresh in my mind, so sleep eluded me. I spent the time praying and seeking God's thoughts and heart for my children.

Our home educating journey began five years ago. I remember very clearly the vision that God placed into my heart with regards to raising my children for Him, in His name. By choosing to raise Kingdom children we have to reject mans pre-requests in favour of Gods. It is a hard path to choose - even Christian friends can reject God's way in favour of the worlds way. On Tuesday last week, I posted a little 'moms mutterings', thoughts that God has been swirling around in my mind for a while. You see, as you walk along the homeschooling path, distractions come and jostle for a position in your heart and mind. Distractions that take the place of the beautiful vision God gave for your family. I am currently in the process of unpacking, sorting, discarding all distractions and asking God to restore His vision and purpose for my children right into my heart. So there will be numerous 'mom's mutterings' here. Let me share my quiet time journal pages with you, I pray that you too are encouraged.


Isaiah 40 v 7-8 ~ '...People are no more enduring than grass. Yes, grass withers and flowers fade, but the Word of our God endures forever.'

From this morning's study, God has highlighted numerous areas that I need to seek Him on, ponder on in His Word and pray about. But today, god focused my heart on the brevity of life. Once we understand how brief and fleeting life is, we are able to truly order our priorities.

In the scripture above, the brevity of life is clearly illustrated. You cannot help but grasp how fleeting our time here on earth is. We have all watched flowers bud, bloom and fade away within days. With our time here on earth being so fleeting, you have to ask yourself, 'What then, should I be concerned with? Where should I be devoting my heart and time?'

Well, this verse tells us that the 'Word of our god endures forever'. In Ecclesiastes 12v13 we are told this, 'After all this, there is only one thing to say: Fear God, and obey His commands, because this is all that man was created for.'

This is why we were created! This is our chief role in this life. Jesus said himself that the most important commandment to keep was to, 'love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your mind, with all your strength, and with all your soul - and love others as yourself.'

Our time with our children then should be to teach them, by the Word and by example, of God and His love. If our sole purpose of being created is to love and serve God, then that is where our concerns should lie. Not in 'conforming to this worlds standards'. Romans 12v2 says, 'Do not conform yourselves to the standards of this world, but let God transform you inwardly by a complete change of your mind. Then you will be able to know the Will of god - what is good and is pleasing to Him and is perfect.'

Right now my children are 11 and 13 years old. I am more aware than ever of the few years I have left to shepherd their hearts. Each day is vital if I am to show them their Saviours love and teach them His ways. Often I feel inadequate. I myself fall so very short of the Glory of god. I loos patience, I focus on the unimportant and loose sight of the important. i can speak with a harsh tongue, fail to understand and can discipline from wrong motives. Yes, I fall so very short!

It seems like just yesterday that God called us home. I've had 5 full years of being able to shepherd my children's hearts and today I ask myself if I have made good use of that time.
  I would love to say that I took every opportunity to show Christ's love, grabbed every teachable moment with both hands, all the while keeping my eyes firmly fixed on God and on His purpose for my children. but the truth is that I am a weak and fallen sinner, and have not seized all these things. I have allowed distractions (a post dedicated to this later on) to enter my life and interfere with God's vision for raising Kingdom children.

For all my short-comings and failings, I know that God fills in the gaps. He is the one who will transform hearts. he is the one who can raise a valley of dry bones. He is the one who can restore the years eaten by locusts.

Thank you Lord for your mercies, they are new each morning!

It is never too late! Today is the day to come to God, to really put your trust in Him. He will renew your strength and vision in shepherding your children and in building a Kingdom family. The key to being able to continue faithfully in the work that God has called you to is to keep your eyes FIXED on Him. Not to allow them to wander and covert [curriculum, classroom tools, extra-mural activities you are convinced you children needs]. We need to resolutely keep our eyes firmly on the goal. I do this by:

a) Confessing my sin and short-comings
b) Submitting my will and myself to God
c) By reading Gods Word daily
d) By praying to God throughout the day, maintaining a conversation with the One who knows my children best
e) By fellowshipping with other Christian home educating moms who know how hard the path is.

My Mission?

To obey all Gods commands. To repeat them to my children, so that they may faithfully obey all God's teachings. These teachings are NOT empty words, they are our very life. - Deut 32:46.

How Lord? How am I to teach my children your ways?

You are to 'Repeat them when you are at home, and when you are away, when you are resting and when you are working. Tie them on your arms and wear them on your foreheads as a reminder. Write them on the door-posts of your houses and on your gates. ~ Deut 6:7-8

We are to be obedient. We are to have our children with us - at home - so that we can teach them about God and His love at all times, and we are to be unashamed in our mission!

At an encouragment day a few years back, a wonderful Godly woman shared a very sad story of a dear little boy that was part of their family for a short time. His life was cruely taken from him one holiday when he went home with his mother to the homelands to visit his father. His father in a state of drunkedness beat his son - the small boy died. As I write this my heart once again breaks and my eyes are filled with tears, but she asked a question after she related this story. She asked, 'If you knew that today was your child's last day on earth, would you insist on that math lesson being done, or would you hold them in your arms and show them the love of Jesus, speak of the things of heaven to come and of their beautiful loving Saviour?' I know exactly what I am going to do. Keeping such a question in mind certainly makes you think and puts things in perspective - doesn't it?

11 comments:

  1. Thank you Shirley - that sure does put things into perspective, doesn't it:)

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  2. Wow. Thank you for this encouragement today. It is easy to lose our focus with all of the other voices out there telling us all the things we should be doing....but whose standards are we living by?
    This post is a great reminder of what is important. It brought tears to my eyes and caused me to stop mid-math lesson and hug my son.

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  3. Thank you for this lovely reminder on keeping the right perspective.

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  4. Thanks Shirley.
    Is there any way that I can subscribe in an rss feed? Thanks

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  5. Hi Becky,

    I consider myself to be a little technologically challenged! I have added an email and some other kind of subscription feed onto my sidebar at the top ;o) I certainly hope they work! If not let me know and I'll play around with it a bit more.
    Blessings
    Shirley

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  6. So easy as a Christian home educating mum to get distracted by academia from the most important aims. A helpful reminder.

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  7. Dear Shirley
    What a powerful posting! Thank you for sharing at the SACHS Blog Carnival.
    Blessings

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  8. This is lovely - a good reminder. Even for those of us on this road for biblical reasons have to fight against the temptation of the world, how are you all enjoying the UK??

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  9. Thank you very much for this posting. I am going through very much the same: God is pressing on my heart that life is so short, do I really want to spend it with unnecessary schoolwork when my son is only 5 and there is so much else we can do and learn now?
    Elize van der Merwe

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