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Monday, June 11, 2007

The Best Field Trip Ever... Is It Over?

Well, the kiddos are officially out of school. Our 6 week field trip to the public schools has been one of the most "growing" experiences I've had in years. I have learned so much about God and trust, fear and faith, judgment and grace.
As we end this "field trip" I stand completely torn on whether to send my children back or not.
I had set the public schools up to be such a villain, and I was quite suprised to see that they were not quite as bad as I had assumed. In fact my harsh judgment I was creating a wedge between me and the unsaved families of my community. My ability to outreach was completely crippled by my attitude.

I often write pros and cons lists to help me (along with prayer of course). Here are a few:

PROS:

Kids schedule is more organized (this has been a major issue in homeschool for some of my kids who need more structure than I offer)

Kids have many friends (this will appear under the con list as well)

We have tremendous outreach opportunities

Kids are experiencing a sense of accomplishment

We are tackling issues and growing spiritually as a family

My house is SO much cleaner :+)

I never hear "Mom, I'm BORED"

I am learning to trust God and not live in fear

My kids are having an opportunity to develop interests beyond my scope, for example, who knew that my oldest who hates sports would LOVE volleyball? Or my other daughter loves the flute?

My kids are actually sharing the gospel! THAT is SO cool!


CONS:

The kids are growing apart from each other

They are far too advanced for their grade (and can get a bit bored)

While there are a nice handful of Christian Kids, I find that my kids are generally unequally yoked with the majority of the kids

Our kids are having to stand up daily for their morals and beliefs (this could be a pro, but It gets exhausting for such young kids to have to do this daily... how long can they last?)

My kids ARE hearing about things I'd wrather they not.

My 11 year old daughter has been asked out by nearly every boy in her class (this bothers me a lot, but to her credit she has stood firm in her "No's" despite some ridicule)

The education is sadly lacking (although FAR better than I thought it would be)

They are picking up on some childish behaviors unique to school kids (like talking in text message! OMG that is SO annoying).

I can clearly see the influence other kids have on my children, and THAT is probably the most disturbing of all.

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So, with all that said, I will be in regular prayer through out the Summer. I would hate to leave the kids who God has placed a tender spot in my heart for. Still, my children's souls are of my primary concern. I have watched such growth, and seen my kids turn to God because they finally have a reason to. That has been so fantastic for them, yet I wonder how long they can withstand the pressures of a peer group so different in moral and spiritual beliefs.
Two of my children want to go back, two do not, but while I love to hear their opinions, this is NOT their choice to make, nor is it mine. I am leaving this one up to God.
Fellow blog friends, would you pray for me? These last 6 weeks have been a God thing, a huge learning experience for me AND my children, but the school system has the potential to be a very dangerous mission field, God's hand MUST be on it..... Is it time for my little missionaries to come home???? Hoping for clarity of God's will before September! ~Karlie

12 comments:

Halfmoon Girl said...

I will absolutely pray for you- i could totally relate to everything you said in your lists- our kids were in public school before becoming homeschoolers. I totally agree that it is a God thing.

nsremom said...

Big stuff.

you know, you can try reading some of your others posts from awhile back and see what your thought process was back then. Also, read things that encouraged you. That might help clarify your thoughts.

But, my biggest suggestion? Trust your husband. I don't know which way he sways on the issue, but I know that my husband thinks differently than I do and therefore sees things a lot more clearly sometimes.

my humble .02.

Em

ConservaChick said...

Em,
GREAT advice. You know, I have read over my old posts, especially the God is Bigger Than The Wolves post. My thoughts have not changed, but I am still unsure of God's long term direction. It's funny that you mentioned turning to my husband. I kept reading the bible, praying for God to give me a verse, anything that would give me guidance, and I kept coming across verses about a good wife, and the husband being the spiritual head, etc. At the time I thought, this is so not relevant, but now, I think I need to give these verses a second look. After all, he was the one who insisted on this little experiment, that turned out to be oh so good for my family... it should be him that ends it....

Which way does he sway???? Ask me AFTER I tell him about the boys that like our daughter (+:

javamamma said...

I'll definitely be praying for you. God for sure has a plan and a purpose and I pray that He reveals it to both you and your hubby and then you gives you great peace that you have found His heart on the matter. Enjoy your summer!

Rachelle said...

These are huge decisions. I will definitely be in prayer with you, my friend.

Gayle said...

Praying for you guys!!

So exciting to see the fruit from your field trip. Sounds like God has done some great stuff in you and your family!

Gayle

chickadee said...

i loved your well-thought out lists. i think it's great that you have experienced the public school and i can clearly see why you are torn. may i suggest you also make a list of pros and cons of your homeschool? i would be interested in reading that especially since you have something to compare it too. i will pray for you.

Shari said...

I love your heart which says it really doesn't matter what the pro and cons are, what really matters is what is God calling us to. I know that God honors that. He is going to make your path clear.

Enjoy your summer!

call*me*kate said...

I'll definitely keep you in prayer. You've already been given great advice, which I agree with, so I really can't add much else to what's been said. I'll pray for both you and your husband to be in agreement on your decision and that the Lord will put your children exactly where He wants them. And certainly don't worry about it all summer - leave it to the Lord, pray without ceasing and then enjoy your family time!

Kate

Cindy said...

Hey, girl. I will definitely pray for you- I've been processing so much similar stuff lately with our decision.

You're teaching them about the Lord; you are guiding them in His ways. He will bless that whichever path you take. Keep us up to date!

Trina said...

Hi there,
Well its good that you didn't ask people to give you their pros and cons lists, for they are different for everyone, and that can be confusing for you. We have done both. We have mostly homeschooled, but we have dabbled in public. I feel really good about our decision FINALLY! It was a hard long road to come to that complete peace though. So I understand your struggle. You do have all summer, and through prayer you will know what is right for the year. I started off just making the decision one year at a time. If I homeschooled I would say this year we feel like this, and same with the couple of years we dabbled with public. One year at a time maybe. Now I know, but it was a process for me. Keep praying and lots of love!

Kimmie said...

Hi Karlie;

Most certainly you can count on my prayers. May God give you fresh direction for your family and may he confirm it for you, peace that passes understanding with wisdom that only heaven (God) can bring!

blessings
Kimmie
mama to 6
one homemade and 5 adopted