This Mama needs encouragement along my walk with Christ, as a mother, and as a homeschool teacher……….and I need to feed my ‘good girl side’, and she needs to eat a lot! There are days when I feel helpless to help and that I am causing more harm than good to all of these kids who call me Mama. I know that God called me to do this homescholing thing, this righteous living thing, but some days I just cannot understand why he would pick such a sinner like me!
When I feel like this, I need outside help……….from my Almighty Father, of course……..and from the lovely ladies that He lead me to, the big guns of the homeschooling world. These women are my ‘best-stranger-friends’, and it was with their guidance and tools that I came to the serene place of homeschooling bliss. I can always tell when I need a big ole’ heapin’ of the Proverbs 31 woman example to get me through, and it is with these resources that I can remind myself of what I want to be, and how to get there.
I don’t know about you, but the character traits of that lovely woman do not come naturally to me. I have to work really hard at being calm, graceful, submissive, meek and quiet. I am pretty sure that is why He gave us her example……..which always gets me wondering. Did He not give her a name because she is what He wants to see in a woman, but there was not a woman during that time that lived up to that? Or, was she not named because he didn’t want us to put her on a pedestal? I don’t know, but I am glad that I have the example, either way.
Here is the list of outlets that I plug myself into when I need a reminder, an encourager, and a guideline on the whys, hows, and whats of being a godly homeschooling mom (I am not affiliated with any of the below):
1. The Bible. Not only do I read about the Proverbs 31 woman, but I also read Titus, Romans, Acts and 1 & 2 Corinthians…….the balms in which to soothe my soul! I was in Barnes and Noble last month with my daughter, as we were celebrating her 16th birthday, and I promised to buy her a brand-spanking-new book (we usually only buy used). While I was perusing the stacks, I eventually ended up in the Bibles. I have so many, yet I cannot get enough of them! Lo and behold, there is now a Bible for Homeschool Moms. No, the Bible didn’t get new books written for the homeschooler, but throughout those wondrous old pages, are devotionals stuck here and there written just for us!
2. Michelle Duggar. I can still recall the night that I read her first book from cover to cover (that she wrote with her husband), The Duggars: 20 and Counting. It was filled with such morsels of Christian mother goodness, that I devoured every word. I am so thankful for the love and support that this woman has unknowingly given to me as a Christian, a wife and a mother. If you haven’t read it….you are in for a treat. You can order the book, and read Michelle’s blog here: http://duggarfamily.com/content/michelle_blog
3. 17 Kids and Counting & 18 Kids and Counting. Notice, this is not their current television show (which is still great) 19 Kids and Counting. These are the earlier shows. I will watch these episodes, which are from season 1, 2, and 3, when I want to remember to keep things simple, and to have a sweet spirit with my children. The first few years of the Duggars show were all about family time, homeschool time, thriftiness and their love of Christ. They are still about those things, don’t get me wrong, but the kiddies are growing up now, and each episode is usually about some sort of adventure outside of the home. I also love their first 4 documentaries that is in the 1st season’s box, 14 Children and Pregnant Again, Raising 16 Children, 16 Children and Moving In, and Duggars’ Big Family Album. I bought them here, at a very good price: http://store.discovery.com/19-kids-and-counting/index.php?g=1&v=tlc_shows_18-kids-and-counting
4. Steve and Teri Maxwell. Another God send. This couple is the poster couple for homeschool………meaning, they look and sound like the ‘typical’ homeschoolers. Long skirts, girls in matching outfits, and softly spoken parents. I could eat them up! I may not be able to match them and their complete lifestyle, but I would consider myself a lucky duck if I ever came close. Along with the Duggars, these two people are my favorites. My go-to book and cds of theirs, is Keeping Our Children’s Hearts and the cds, Building a Vision, Manager of Their Homes, Loving Your Husband, and Homeschooling with a Meek and Quiet Spirit. The last one, Homeschooling with a Meek and Quiet Spirit, also has a book, but I have not purchased that one yet……but it is so on my list! You can order these things on their website: http://www.titus2.com They also have a blog, that you can read here: http://blog.titus2.com/
5. Donna Partow. I joined a Christian Book Club once, and one of the books that I picked was, Becoming the Woman God Wants Me to Be; A 90-Day Guide to Living the Proverbs 31 Life. Boy am I still thankful that I bought that book, not having a clue on whether it would be a good one! Turns out, it will take you on an amazing journey, and I like to go on that journey again and again! I researched the book, to show you the best price, and found it at Barnes and Noble, here: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/listing/2690975581048?r=1&cm_mmca2=pla&cm_mmc=GooglePLA-_-Book_5To14-_-Q000000633-_-2690975581048 It is soooo worth it!
The next time you find yourself frazzled, or on your knees asking God for clarity on why you are homeschooling your kiddos……read one of these books, watch a master at work, or listen to the sweetest people give you the encouragement that you need to do God’s work!