nurturing talents

As the school year is underway, full speed ahead, I’d like to offer a little perspective to this season of life you are either enduring or enjoying. I’m more and more aware of how important my knowledge needs to be of God’s purpose and call during this assignment for my life.

The foundation is based on how my heart has grown to know Jesus, His nature, and His love for me and my family. God gives good gifts to His children. We are numbered among those recipients. I want to explore what you’ve been given and in turn how to steward the gifts bestowed on you.

The parable of the talents

Let’s explore the parable of the talents found in Matthew 25:14-28. God gives each one according to His confidence in your ability. You’ve been given an assignment you can handle and prosper in.

God is not micromanaging your performance. He is giving you much latitude to do the best you can with what you’ve received. Not everyone will be doing it the same way with the talents given them by God. But those faithful in their present assignment, no matter how large or small, can receive the blessing of God and a significant reward.

The only ones who fail are those who have a wrong perspective of the nature of God. The one talent man felt Jesus was a hard man which brought him into a spirit of fear. This man received neither the blessing nor more talents.

Don’t use homeschooling as an excuse to hide in fear. Don’t be like the one talent man. God knows you are taking a risk, because none of us knows the actual result of our homeschooling efforts until our children are out of the home.

Did we impact their hearts and impart truth? Do they know they are loved and secure?

Here is what Matthew recorded:

“Again, it will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted his property to them. To one he gave five talents of money, to another two talents, and to another one talent, each according to his ability. Then he went on his journey…After a long time the master of those servants returned and settled accounts with them. The man who had received the five talents brought the other five. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘you entrusted me with five talents. See, I have gained five more.’ His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’…” Then the man who had received the one talent came. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘I knew that you are a hard man, harvesting where you have not sown and gathering where you have not scattered seed. So I was afraid and went out and hid your talent in the ground. See, here is what belongs to you. “His master replied, ‘You wicked, lazy servant! So you knew that I harvest where I have not sown and gather where I have not scattered seed? Well then, you should have put my money on deposit with the bankers, so that when I returned I would have received it back with interest…” Ask God to give you the skills and faith of the five talent servant. Use what you’ve been given and see God’s blessing on giving you exceptional results.

Talents in your homeschool

How does this apply to our homeschool efforts? Each family has been entrusted with various talents, children in this case. God knows you have skills, wisdom and a heart for excellence. That is why He has blessed you.

Psalm 127:3 says, “Behold, children are a gift of the Lord, The fruit of the womb is a reward. ”

We need to view our life in light of the parable of the talents, recognizing that God has given us the child/children that we have.

So how are we going to bring about the best possible return for each of the children God has given us? When the Lord comes back and asks what we’ve done with the investment He’s given us, what do we say? Do you know what it will take, in time and effort, to get the best possible return from your children?

As a father, I believe some of the Lord’s evaluation will include their spiritual condition, relationship within the family, and their ability to carry out their assignment.

We all start with a newborn babe. How do we get to graduation? What are we investing in order to grow what we’ve been given by the Lord?

My investment strategy would be sharing God’s word in the home, living a humble life, confessing my sins to our children, and developing in them a work ethic with the appropriate academic training to succeed when they leave the home.

This requires time, my time.

I can hope the church, Sunday school, or youth group can bring God’s word to life in my student, but statistics show evangelical youth are leaving the church at a staggering rate after high school. Barna Research says 64% of youth leave the church one year after graduation, while homeschoolers have an 84% retention rate.

May I suggest that your homeschool efforts will produce the greatest return on the talents (children) given you by the Lord. You have an incredible assignment. I would encourage you to make time investments this year with your family. It will bring about a return in the future that produces the greatest joy in life.

Your investment of love, prayer, and training will provide a wonderful return. This effort requires a sacrifice in many areas.

In the end, aren’t we looking for this affirmation from Matthew 25:21, “Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord”?

This is the declaration over you when you develop the talents in your home.