Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Sally Made me do it!

If you asked me who finally tipped the scales for me in the decision to homeschool my children, I'd have to say that "Sally made me do it." If you haven't heard of Sally Clarkson, it's time you familiarized yourself with her work and ministry. Here, don't read the rest of this blog post...go buy some of her books, then come back and finish reading...

The reason I say this is because I was first introduced to her through her book The Ministry of Motherhood. It examined the job that we do as mothers as compared to the ministry of Jesus and the relationship he had with his disciples. I would call it a very inspirational handbook on what it means to raise disciples, and I plan to read it again...something I rarely do.

However it is her book The Mission of Motherhood that I am currently re-reading because this book inspires me, encourages me and brings me to tears. Very gently and with a warmth that springs from her own contentment as a wife and mother, she unfolds the biblical design and purpose to which mothers are called, and the incredible responsibilites with which they have been entrusted.

Even though Sally Clarkson is a homeschooling mother, she never mentions this as something one must do in order to fulfill the biblical design of motherhood. Nevertheless, when I was finished reading these books, I walked away feeling a certain conviction that I could more certainly build the kind of home that she talks about by homeschooling my children rather than sending them out to be taught by others.

She writes about one rough day that brought about an epiphany:

"I needed to accept days like this--my children's neediness, the myriad mindless tasks, and even my own occasional discomfort--as part of my partnering with my husband toward our mutual goal of building a godly heritage for Christ. I needed to nurture my children with my songs, my words, and my physical labor, treating each day as sacred in ther development toward becoming healthy, mature adults. I needed to face the reality that all of the "important stuff" I was longing to do had far less eternal significance than what I was involved in doing. If I didn't commit myself wholeheartedly to the demands of motherhood, I would never be able to do my best, because my heart would always be somewhere else."

And this, dear homeschooling mommies, is what many of us struggle with on a day-in-day-out basis. It is so difficult to infuse our homes with kindness, bless our children when they spill their milk at dinner or throw up in our beds, realize that the gentleness with which we love and nurture them is what softens and prepares little hearts to receive the message of the gospel and receive the Lord into their lives. Keeping the eternal perspective daily and understanding that if we do not, we tear down our homes with our own hands is the task before us. Let us not grow weary...

If you are needing refreshment and some encouragement for the road you journey, read The Mission of Motherhood. I guarantee a blessing will come of it!

Proverbs 14:1
"The wise woman builds her house, but the foolish tears it down with her own hands."

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