There is evidence of winter all around us; the ground is frost covered, the trees are barren, squirrels are hiding away food and there are hats, coats, and gloves that are piled up in our entryway with an inevitable missing shoe somewhere in there.
I’m sitting here enjoying a few moments of quiet before the house wakes up and we jump into another full-day of learning together. It seems, as winter arrives, it can often arrive into our homeschool days.
It shows up in various ways – a weary mom, kids with lots of energy that struggle through lessons, the days seem longer, the new school year feeling is long gone, struggles abound, we question the curriculum or methods we have chosen and thoughts of “I can’t do this another day” crosses our minds.
Can anyone relate?
I don’t know what current season you are in, but if your homeschool isn’t in a season of winter we’ve all been there and we will likely be there again.
Much needed perspective in winter
I recently did some major cleaning of our school area; it was long overdue and I had put it off for far too long. I found myself in the middle of our basement surrounded by old handwriting work from my now 5th grader; you know the handwriting where the awkward sized letters fill up the lines with a few short words!
I stumbled upon artwork from each of the kids younger days, memorabilia from field trips we took, notebooks filled with papers written with doodles off to the sides, lots of unfinished projects, stacks of curriculum that had been tossed to the side after we gave it a good try, parts and pieces of science experiments, and books with worn spines and torn pages as evidence of toddlers who ran around doing what toddlers do.
I honestly started this process with dread and at the end of it, God used this sifting through of our prior homeschool day’s to give me much needed perspective.
I am the one who got to witness those first letters, each child has been given the time to freely create, we have had grand adventures in our city while learning, curiosity is allowed to come alive through experiments and projects even if they weren’t finished, my children have been given the time they need when learning challenges arise, relationships have been fostered that will last for eternity, and we have journeyed together to far off lands, while in the comfort of our own home even with toddlers running and jumping.
I had been in a winter season of homeschool for a while where there were endless challenges and questioning if homeschool was the best school choice for us.
That day I was given the gift to see with clearer vision and God allowed my heart to soften towards our days together with fresh eyes affirming the truth of Ecclesiastes 3:11, “He has made everything beautiful in its time.”
Looking at the past, I was given the gift of perspective that even through the daily challenges He will make this time at home with my children beautiful even when it feels far from that.
He turned the heap of a mess in our schoolroom into beauty that day. He renewed in me a desire to delight in Him as my Father who always knows what is best for me and my family.
Making everything beautiful
No matter what season we are in, dear sisters, let us remain hopeful in Him and remind ourselves of the promise from His word that He does indeed make everything beautiful – EVERY. SINGLE. MOMENT.
The God who was and will be is also the God who is with us, helping us, working in us, and leading us toward a beautiful end – a redemptive one where all our pain is transformed into glory all while He delights in us.
“For the Lord your God is living among you. He is a mighty savior. He will take delight in you with gladness. With his love, he will calm all your fears. He will rejoice over you with joyful songs.” Zephaniah 3:17
Let us sit in awe of what that means for us! God is a never leaving Father who gladly delights in you. His love calms any and all fears while rejoicing over you with songs of joy.
He delights in you because of who He is not because of who you are or what you have done. We aren’t ever going to see the whole picture of our days right now and answers to prayers likely won’t arrive as speedy as two-day shipping.
Sisters, what if these struggles and challenges in the winter seasons of homeschool are actually what God is using to shape us and our children into who He wants us to be?
Let us stand firm in these truths and not let the enemy rob us of the joy that God has for us as we homeschool our children.
Let us not live for grasping the moment as it passes or striving to see clearly now what God is doing at every turn. May we be women who desire to rest and delight in a God who will make our days beautiful in time.
To help your pursuit of a God who delights in you, join us for a relaxing day of encouragement just for you from 8:30-5 p.m. Jan. 25 (sign up today!).
Hear from speaker and author Kristen Kill; a woman transformed by the delight of God, mom to five hilarious children, and homeschooling four with a daughter in college.
Rest and relax as you listen to speaker sessions, be encouraged by local moms as they chat about what “delight” in the Lord looks like through different seasons (including this winter!), worship together, and enjoy delicious food and treats prepared just for you throughout the day.
Your registration includes a light breakfast with coffee or tea and lunch. We look forward to greeting you with a smile and our hope is that you leave refreshed and invigorated for the rest of the school year!
Encouragement Day registration ends Jan. 18.
About the author
Shawna Ketter is imperfectly following and in love with a perfect God, married to her best friend and mama to four sweet spirited kids. The heart of their homeschool is to raise kids that are “rooted” in God, who find joy in Him and fruitful for His Glory! Most days they are wandering and wondering while learning outdoors.
Out of a desire to create space for families to make meaningful relationships she started Wild + Free KC, a homeschool nature group that sparks wonder and speaks life into hearts. Craig and Shawna enjoy serving together in their local church as Sunday School teachers, and on the prayer ministry team. They have been MPE board members for four years and Shawna has the privilege of serving on the planning team for Women’s Encouragement Day.