Saturday, August 15, 2009

Why I Do It

At the beginning of every school year, I am reminded of why I school my two kids at home. Brian and I had said we would "never" homeschool our kids - before we had any. **raging laughter** We only knew one homeschooling family, and we loved how their kids were and how their family functioned as a unit, but that was not for us. At that point in time, we were not on the "let's see what God has to say" plan in our lives. I could digress here, but I won't! Let's just say, if we had been, we would not have been wondering in the wilderness for several years...thankfully, not 40!

I was feverishly reading every parenting book I could get my hands on when my two were babes. At one point, I was reading a Dobson book which gave some advice on little boys and school. He talked about how many boys are not ready for Kindergarten at the age of 5 or 6. He spoke of how boys like to play and move around, not necessarily sitting at a desk for 7 hours a day. Dobson suggested homeschooling was an excellent option for boys in the early years of education. He went on to explain the benefits of homeschooling for children, and that got my antennae up to what the Lord was trying to tell me for our family.

Don't you just love to eat your words, especially when you spoke them so vehemently?! I will say, I have learned not to say "never" about life decisions, because I have eaten too many "nevers" in my life!

When I felt like the Lord was leading me to homeschool, I was very timid to tell my husband...because we were in the "never" mode, remember? One evening when he came in from working late, I brought the subject up. "I know you will think I am crazy, but I think God wants us to homeschool the kids." He looked at me and said, "I am so glad you said that! I have been feeling like God wants us to homeschool, but I didn't know how to tell you because it will all be on you!" (How right he was!! ;)

So the journey began with a decision to obey God. We knew it was not for every family, but it was for us. When all the moms in the neighborhood were discussing the best preschools, my conviction only grew. When all the moms in the neighborhood were discussing private or public school, my conviction grew all the more. When Kindergarten came for my oldest, I cried for the moms in the neighborhood who were missing their kiddos. I said a prayer of thanksgiving to be able to keep my two at home.

Is every day easy? No...a thousand times no! What I can tell you is being obedient to what God has called our family to do has brought me too many blessings to count. I would not trade this time with my kids for anything!

Monday, August 10, 2009

The Lines Have Fallen to me in Pleasant Places

I love music. I grew up in a musical family - played piano since 1st grade and clarinet since 5th grade. My parents played music all the time in our home and I met my sweet husband in the huge, well-known marching band we were both a part of. So, it was natural to me to be playing music all day Saturday while I was painting.. The Lord spoke to me many times during the day and had me in tears a couple of times. One was when he reminded me of something that happened a couple of weeks ago....

I had a very bad day. You know the kind, when you feel like you can't get anything done of value and your kids seem to notice this and for some reason they seem to take advantage of Mommy's mood and do everything a little bit MORE, like fight more, cry more, yell more, etc....
Till at the end of the day we all need a break from each other. It's on days like this that I fall into bed and talk to the Lord about how His mercies are new every morning and I can't wait to start again tomorrow. Nothing better than a complete DO-OVER!! Have you ever been there??

On this particular bad day, I made a decision to get up even earlier the next day because I knew I needed to spend more time with the Lord, get right with Him and prepare myself for a new day with (hopefully), a better attitude! I made my hot tea and sat in my special chair with my Bible. The Lord had me reading through Esther this summer and it was during this quiet moment that He showed me how nothing surprises Him. He knew the Israelites were going to be hated by Haman and that Haman would try to destroy them so He arranged for Esther to become Queen.

Then it hit me.... He knew all about yesterday BEFORE it happened. He knew that all those things on my to-do list were not going to get done. He knew that the child who had all the fits would have them. He knew that the accidents, the spilled milk, the broken things were all going to be broken. He knew that the child who spoke to me in that tone and with those words was going to say that exact thing. He was NOT surprised. It may have surprised me. I could not have predicted how bad the day went. But He could have. He already knew. In fact, He ordained that day to happen in that way.

Maybe it was for me to learn a lesson. Or my children to learn some lessons. Maybe they needed these lessons to grow them up for the next day. Maybe I needed them so that the next time I have a bad day, my response will be with more wisdom, more control and less of me.

At any rate, it did not surprise Him and He was in control the whole time. He never left His throne and yet He was with me through it all.

He showed me in my quiet time these verses:
Psalm 16:5-11
The LORD is the portion of my inheritance and my cup; You support my lot. The lines have fallen to me in pleasant places; Indeed, my heritage is beautiful to me. I will bless the LORD who has counseled me; Indeed, my mind instructs me in the night. I have set the LORD continually before me; Because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken. Therefore my heart is glad and my glory rejoices; My flesh also will dwell securely. For You will not abandon my soul to Sheol; Nor will You allow Your Holy One to undergo decay. You will make known to me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; In Your right hand there are pleasures forever.

This "lot" and "portion" that He has given me does not surprise Him. I can be glad and rejoice in the little trial in my life because I know He is with me and has ordained them for a purpose. I may not see the purpose right away or even in this life, but I can trust He knows what He is doing and He is not SURPRISED!!

So, as I was painting and listening to music, this song, History, by Matthew West came on my ipod. Here are the lyrics:

Its been a bad day, you've been looking back
And all you can see is everything you wish you could take back
All your mistakes, a world of regrets
All of those moments you would rather forget
I know it's hard to believe
Let me refresh your memory

Chorus:Yesterday is history
And history is miles away
So leave it all behind you
Let it always remind you of the day
The day that love made history
You know you can't stay right where you fell
The hardest part is forgiving yourself
But let's take a walk into today
And don't let your past get in the way

Repeat chorusYeah Yeah

Would you believe that you are history
In the making, in the making
Every choice that you are making
Every step that you are taking
Every chain that you are breaking
History is in the making
Every word that you are saying
Every prayer that you are praying
Every chain that you are breaking
History is in the making
History is in the making
History is in the making


Job 31:4 Does He not see my ways and number all my steps?

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Motivated to Start Stamping!

WOW! We had our first homeschool group meeting of the school year Tuesday night with almost 60 women! It was so cool to look across the room and see friends I have known over the last few years and then brand new friends for the year to come.

The excitement in the room was high, which set the tone for the rest of the night. We heard from a beautiful young lady, Amanda, about how her home education has shaped her into a godly woman. I think we could have all gone home after she shared how vital her mother was to her spiritual development and success. There were few dry eyes when she gave her mom a painting she had done to honor her. Yeah. WOW!

The cool thing about the evening--the God thing--was how He gave a message that touched hearts to leave an imprint on the generation we serve. We are to "impress" His Word on our children's hearts as we go about life. (Deut. 6:4-9) First we ourselves have to be in the Word in order to impress the Word on our kids. As we disciple our children day in and day out, we are stamping the image of Christ on them.

I readily admit, the image I often stamp is not of Christ, but of Kim. Parenting is such a reality check!

Here are some practical ways to stamp the image of Christ on your children.

Prayer--don't neglect praying at bedtime with them. I shared how this has been my struggle over the last year, until God bopped me upside the head with conviction. It seems as though before sleepyland, their hearts are so open. Don't miss the opportunity to talk, share, and pray.

Scripture--we gave out stamps and stamp pads to use creatively with the kids to send a note filled with Truth or a word of encouragement. Post it on their doorframe on their room (Deut. 6:9), post it on their mirror, on their car dashboard, or by their breakfast plate.

Service--find some area of service to do as a family. Visit an elderly friend once a month, serve in a soup kitchen, volunteer at church, stuff envelopes for a church department, make a meal for a new mom, send cards to soldiers serving overseas...the list is endless. Find something and do it together for God.

Friends--not only my children's friends should stamp the image of Christ on them, but my own friends have shown the power of the stamp! We are so blessed to have friends who love on our kids and encourage them in their lives. Our kids count our adult friends as their friends, too.

Take Care of YOU--as homeschool moms, we put ourselves last on the list most days. I have found when I continue to do that over and over again, I end up on empty and ready to explode! That usually does not leave a pretty stamp! ;) Whatever you need to do for yourself this year, whether it is get in a Bible study, exercise, or having some needed down time, make it a priority and do it!

How about you? How do you stamp the image of Christ on your children? We would love to hear from you!

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Passion for Purity

If you are anything like me, you don’t want your children to make the same mistakes you did in your youth. When I look back over those years, I wish I could have a “do over.” As parents, I think we want to protect our children from those feelings as they become adults. I love the purity driven sermons, books, and seminars that are prominent today. Brian and I have worked to start the mindset early in our children of waiting for who God wants to be their spouse and not giving pieces of yourself away before your wedding day-emotionally and physically.

We watched a wonderful movie this weekend, Pamela’s Prayer. The movie was convicting to us as parents to hold a high standard, to not stop praying, and to not give in to the pressures of society. The kids were able to see a true story of how God honors the faith of His children. The movie proved to be an affirmation of what we are trying to get across to our kids to live a life of purity and to wait on the Lord.

Now here is the funny part—the movie takes place in the 80’s! Brian and I loved the hair, the clothes, the cars—what a flashback!! Mullets reigned, big hair, and clothing that should never have been allowed! We enjoyed that walk down memory lane!

Pamela’s Prayer delivers a message for teens and parents to have a passion for purity, whatever the cost. You can purchase it from for $5.99, or you can borrow it from me! It is made by Christian Films –

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