Is God Calling You to Full Time Christian Service?

Honestly, I never felt called or led by God to be a pastor’s wife.  Both of my sisters married pastors, and before I went to college my parents sweetly told me never to feel pressured to follow their path – the most important thing was to follow God’s leading for my life.

Most of the time when I was growing up I believed God was leading me to be a missionary overseas.  I would pepper visiting missionaries with questions.  I even got to the point where I practically told God, “I AM going to be a missionary, no matter what You think” (yikes).  Finally, He got me to a point where I said, “YOUR will be done” (whew).

Zooming ahead … my husband and I both graduated from Bible college.  Yet, we are not in full-time Christian service.

  • Did we waste money and time on our Bible college education?
  • Was it all for nothing?
  • Are we disobeying God?
  • Do we please God less because we are “electrical engineer” and “stay-at-home-homeschooling-mom” instead of “Rev.” and “Mrs. Pastor”?

It couldn’t be further from the truth!  God in His wisdom led us to Bible college, and then He led us to be Full-Time Christians.  In our church and in our community God opens up opportunities all the time to share His good gifts with others.  We are far from perfect about following up on all of His opportunities, but with His strength He is using us and we are constantly in awe of His provision!

God doesn’t call each of His children into the same field.  Where would we be if all believers were pastors and pastors wives?  Where would the body of Christ – the foot, the eyes, the knees be, to fulfill the callings of the local church in our communities (I Corinthians 12)?  He wisely places us in the position He knows will benefit from the talents He’s given us most effectively.

 

“And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.” Ephesians 4:11-13 NKJV

 

When Tim was attending Bible college, seeking God’s will for his life, his pastor took him aside privately and told him that he was confident that God wasn’t leading him to be a pastor.  Was Tim willing and open to be one?  Yes!  But, God used his pastor, who knew his personality and heart well, to give him loving, specific counsel.  Following Bible college, Tim pursued his (God given) interests in math, radio systems and computers, attending community college and then a state university.  The education he learned there, especially learning how to work through the tests of faith and how to face the bombardment against God’s Word, has been priceless.  I can’t tell you how many times God has opened doors for Tim (who pushed on the door of missions by taking a college Missionary Apprentice Program to France) in his engineering field to answer difficult questions about life, death, God, creation, family, etc.  Tim’s Greek and doctrinal training from Bible college days helps in his teaching/music ministry at church, as well as on a daily basis enriching his personal Bible study and walk with God.  God didn’t call him to be a pastor, but God is using him every day!

Before we were married, I taught for three years in a Christian school.  Many of my students were from Ukraine, as well and Pakistan and India.  One of my Indian students and her brother came to know Christ in our Christian school.  A few years later their mom trusted Christ and has shared the gospel with family and friends around the world – many who are coming to know Christ personally!  Praise the Lord!

A couple years ago we hosted a Muslim exchange student from the Philippines, and a Christian young lady from Ghana.  Talk about a mission field!  We are part of a church that is blessed with many students from all over the world attending a state university.  God has brought the world to us.  We are missionaries in our mid-western city – God’s place for us.

Our backgrounds come together to greatly help us in our most important mission field of all: our sons.
Most every day the boys and I pray for Daddy as he goes to his mission field at work, and for God to help us be a light for Jesus in our mission field: our neighborhood, and people we come into contact with at doctors offices, grocery stores, restaurants, parks, etc.  Just today my oldest son wanted to give a gospel tract to some friends of ours who were visiting.  Our mission field is very real!

Pastors and their wives, missionaries, missionary wives … these dear men and women have a sacred calling from God that is different from all else.  As shepherds leading us, as they follow the Good Shepherd, they have unique responsibilities, challenges, sacrifices, and rewards.  We must be committed to loving them (in word and deed!), praying for them, and supporting them.  But, if God didn’t call us to those ministries, we would be sinning against Him by disobeying His lead in our lives.  God’s will is the best place to be.

Perhaps, some time in the future, Tim and I might become missionaries.  We’ve talked about the possibility that after his retirement from his engineering mission field, God may call us to serve in areas of Bible translation (he’s continued using his Greek and enjoys learning Hebrew in his spare time), teaching, technical help, music, etc. on foreign and domestic mission fields.  Until then, we will walk with God daily on the mission field of His calling.  He knows best, and we are confident He will lead us every step of the way!

 

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.” Proverbs 3:5-6 NKJV



Summary:  We each need to seek God’s individual leading, through His Word and the guidance of godly counselors.  He will, in time, impress us through His Spirit in the way we must go.  No fear of missing the boat!  Walk with Him today, every day, and He will faithfully guide to the next step.  Churches need godly pastors and their wives, as well as godly laymen and laywomen.

What about you?  Are you a Full Time Christian, where God has called you to be?  God will provide all the strength and resources we need to fulfill His calling.  Best of all, He promises to be with us every step of the way!

 

“I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called, with all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love, endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.” Ephesians 4:1-5 NKJV

 

Good Soil Evangelism Overview

Last weekend I was privileged to take part in a Good Soil Evangelism training seminar. Having grown up in a Christian home, Bible teaching churches, a Christian school, and two Bible colleges, I have heard much about evangelism.  So, I was happily surprised to be challenged in my thinking.  The training I received made me stop and reconsider my audience and how better to communicate with them.

Here are a few points that stood out to me:

1.  Most of us are familiar with the Romans Road.  Where does it usually begin?  Romans 3:23 – “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”  What is that presuming?  That my audience understands “sin” and “falling short,” as well as their belief in God’s existance.  Three chapters precede chapter three verse twenty-three, building a foundation to prepare the hearer to learn he is a sinner in need.  So, why do we usually start with Romans 3:23?  It may be perfect for someone with a Bible background, but this is becoming less and less common. 

2.  What about the question, “If you were to die today and stand before God, why should He let you into heaven?”  This presumes people believe in God, heaven and hell.  Again, to the typical adult, confusing.

3.  Sin.  Most people don’t know what it is. We laughingly discussed “sinfully delicious desserts” as sadly the most common use of the word “sin” in our society.  Or they may think of Bible beaters – people who condemn others with prideful self-absorbtion, yelling and pulpit pounding.

4.  They presented a useful overview to help us understand where people are spiritually and where to being helping them in their relationship with God.  Evangelism-Discipleship Scale

5.  We studied John 1 (where I have normally suggested people begin reading their Bible) from the eyes of someone with no knowledge of the Old Testament.  Shocking.

6.  We watched the following video about the Mauk Tribe of Papua New Guinea.  They had never heard of Jesus; they didn’t even know where they were in the world.  A missionary couple, who was discouraged by most because of their age, family size, and health problems, felt called to to PNG to share the truth.  I learned a lot from how they presented the Bible to this people which had no background in God’s Word.  All of us sat their and wept, realizing how blessed we are to know God’s Word!

7.  Also available is a book to help new believers:  The Way To Joy
Both The Story of Hope and The Way To Joy are available in several languages.  This program isn’t just another Evangelism Explosion.  It would be extremely beneficial in any church or small group in teaching Biblical evangelism.  Teacher instruction manuals are downloadable for free on their website.  I highly recommend Good Soil Evangelism. Click here to find out more:  Good Soil Evangelism

Public? Home? Charter? Christian?

This past week I asked my Facebook friends what type of schooling they have chosen for their children and why.  You may be raising your eyebrows and squirming a bit in your chair, thinking I’m a little gutsy to bring up such a controversial subject.  Curiosity and genuine interest won out over my fears, and the response was incredible.

With a background in both public and private schools, as a former Christian school teacher, and currently as a homeschooling mom, I appreciate the tough decisions these women have prayed over with their husbands.  Their humility and respect for others, with views different than their own, warmed my heart.
Such an excellent discussion needs to be shared.  Some of what you read may surprise you.  I listed the responses in the order in which I received them, and you will notice some discussion going on.  If you don’t have time to read them all, please read the last testimonial.  It comes from a friend overseas who faces challenges most of us can’t even imagine.  Also, if you are interested, I’ve listed some statistics below.
God knows what is best for our families, and He wants to direct and supply.  What is best for my family may not be what works for your family, and it is no surprise, considering the endless variables: location, special needs, options available, legalities, resources, finances, learning style, and convictions. And to make our journey of faith even more exciting (and less self-reliant), the type of schooling we are using right now may not be what God has for us next year.
Thank you to all my terrific friends who took precious time to share.  Each one of us wants you, the reader, to know that while we try to do what is God’s best for our families, we know we are not perfect – but the God Whom we serve is, and He can be trusted.  Readers, please feel welcome to add your comments.  We hope our experiences will encourage you in your parenting for God’s glory!
Joyfully His,
Sara

Summer, Iowa:  “Since moving to another town, we are considering the Christian school here instead of the public one they are currently in … my husband and I both grew up in public schools, but we like the thought of the kids praying in school, learning Biblical truths there where they are not learning where they are at now… I was always a stay at home mom but we didn’t feel home schooling was for us.” 
Rachel, Iowa:  “Christian school – organization not my strong suit and my oldest has mild learning disabilities he’s in good hands at Faith Christian Learning Center.”
Elizabeth, Michigan:  “So far it is Christian school for the 2 oldest and I will home school my youngest boy  for preschool. We want them in a Christian environment, being taught Truth. We LOVE their school, it has small class sizes and amazing teachers. I don’t feel led to home school the oldest at this point, so for now this is the path… for us. I sent the older 2 to Christian preschools, but for Will (and probably Kate, too) I feel like I can teach him at home and enjoy the years that are so wonderful yet go by so quickly.”
Christie, Indiana:  “Home school. The Bible commands parents to teach their children. Home schooling also avoids indoctrination by public schools and bad influences from unsaved pupils in Christian schools. We feel our kids don’t need to spend all day with ungodly influences (public school) on the chance that those kids might get saved. There are other ways to reach those kids without risking the morals of my children. Also, my husband taught in two Christian schools for 6 years. He saw a lot of unsaved kids who were there because they were kicked out of the public schools. That is not an influence we want around our kids. I am firmly against public schools. I know (for some people) there are exceptions. One verse I go to often is Psalm 1:1. I don’t think it is right to send our kids to do something we are told to not do. A lot of public schools have gone really left-wing in the past ten years. Our local one teaches sex ed in 6th grade (it may be 5th, I am not certain). And a lot of public schools have a “day of silence” for the LGBT agenda. I suspect a lot of Christian parents are unaware of what their kids are being taught, which is not right. I know my strong feelings are not shared by all, and I have to try really hard to keep from sounding judgmental. It doesn’t always work. 🙂 I can’t say that everyone should home school, but I do feel public school is not the place for impressionable children from a Christian home.”
Sara: “Christie, thank you for sharing your convictions with us.  My husband attended public school until Bible college, and then went on to state university because God didn’t call him into full-time Christian service. His family didn’t have a lot of money, but he had a godly mother and dad, as well as a strong church.  Tim is one of the most godly men I’ve ever known. Some of the strongest, most solid Christians I know attended at least some public school.  Many of my christian school peers ended up in trouble.  Most of my friends who have kids in public and private schools are extremely involved and know what’s going on. God can help us all in this adventure of parenting! I believe it’s all about faith and parental involvement.”

Tanya, Iowa:  “In Utah they have a charter school that is based around Christian beliefs. They focus on different things … I think there are a few different ones in Salt Lake. Some focus on science and math some technology the one I was talking about used to be a private school and then became a charter school. I think it still had an optional class like a seminary class. It focused on leadership and being a better person in the community. I think. We would send them there if we were still in Utah. But hopefully there is a good public school because private schools are expensive. I had a good experience in public school and did things that I wouldn’t have gotten the opportunity to do being home schooled. I don’t think I could teach my kids everything they need to know. But to those parents who can you are amazing!”

Sara:  “I know kids from all different forms of education who have excelled and grown up to love and serve God – on the other hand, I’ve seen just as many carefully monitored home schooled, public and private school children who have gone off the deep end when they leave home. There is no guarantee with whatever your education choice. We parents can do everything we can, but our kids (eventually) still have to make the final decision what they are going to do with their lives. I believe we must prayerfully make our decision for our own families and not judge others if they choose differently.”
Jennifer, Minnesota:  “Public school. Both my husband and I grew up in private (Christian) schools. I always assumed I would do the same, but God had other plans for our family. Trust me I enrolled them in the public school with great fear and trepidation… I… felt like I might be throwing my kids to the wolves and that was scary! I have seen God work in their lives and quite honestly my oldest two (6th and 4th) are way more grounded in their faith than I ever was at their age. Their courage and boldness for Christ (sometimes in the midst of ridicule) amazes me and makes me very proud of them and is also a little bit of a rebuke to me in my own life.”
Sara:  “Have you been ridiculed for having your kids in public school, Jennifer?  Not that that matters.”
Jennifer, Minnesota: “No we haven’t been ridiculed for our choice of public education. Honestly though I think all my friends locally have their kids in the public school. My public school mom friends and I recently started a bible study and prayer group. I also have a group here on Facebook to support likeminded public school parents in their children’s educational journey… it’s called Salt and Light. For those of you who have your kids in the public school you are more than welcome to join… let me know. :-)”  

Sarah, Iowa:  “We have actually done all 3, at one time or another. Along the way we have discovered that all methods have their pluses and minuses. I would have to say my preferred method is homeschooling. We are on year 9 of that. I love having the …freedom to choose my kids’ education and to be convinced that their hearts are being educated above their minds. I never planned on homeschooling, but am so glad I did! Now, our sp. needs son attends public school. And that has also been a fantastic choice – for him. We got to a point with him that homeschooling just wasn’t working anymore. Fortunately, we live in a small school district and the student body has embraced Ben. This is our 2nd year at that school and we have had very, very few negative experiences. I have really come to believe that educational choices must be made for each individual child and must be re-evaluated every single year to see if that is still the best choice for that child.”

Sara:  “Thanks for sharing, Sarah. So many people have told me to take it one year at a time and prayerfully consider what God wants for each child.  No matter what we choose, we must keep in mind, as Christie pointed out, that we are ultimately responsible to teach our children and be sure they are brought up in the knowledge of God.”
Mindy, New York:  “I have changed my views on this subject over the years. My conclusion is to seek the Lord’s will! 🙂 Each family, child, school, and situation is different. We as parents are given the responsibility of educating our children. We have …to decide if it is best for us to do that or to delegate that responsibility to others. If we delegate it, we are still responsible to make sure that it happens and to watch for the influences in our children’s lives. We have done the Christian school for a couple years. We have homeschooled for three years. My husband is a public school teacher. We have considered enrolling them in the public school where he teaches. It is a hard decision and one we pray about a lot. I think keeping an open mind, praying, and not judging others for their choices is key in this area of our lives!”
Debra, Kansas:  “I can honestly say that education decisions have been the hardest, most agonizing decisions Jay and I have made as parents. I attended both Christian and public schools growing up, and we have done all three at one time or another. Moving them to public school was a tough decision, but we were in earnest prayer over it, and seeking wise council. My brother in law, who is a godly man, as well as an educator gave us his thoughts, after we sought his advice. (He put HIMSELF through Christian school in high school…) He said, ‘A lot of Christian parents like to complain about the public school environment, but then they pull their kids from the school, as well as their own involvement as parents. The more we do that, the further away the school gets from godly influence. It is a matter of discernment and of prayer.’  That really struck a chord with Jay and I, so when we put our kids in public school, we also put ourselves there. We are heavily involved as volunteers. I have always been room mom for all my kids’ classes, as well as helping out in the classroom several days a week. I currently go in to my youngest’s class on Thurs & Fri to help with reading groups. Then I follow him to lunch, where I can sit and listen to what is going on around him. This type of interaction puts my kids’ teachers as ease with me, and opens up a level of communication that is hard to achieve otherwise. I do not think poorly of parents who chose to homeschool, or put their children in private school. This decision should be made with much thought and prayer. It should also be made with each child’s individuality in mind. (This was a reminder given by a missionary cousin, who reminded me that my two cousins were in different schools at the same time. One child in Christian, one in public.) It is very easy to condemn other parents who made a different choice than your family, without understanding the effort that has gone into the decision. As the Body, we should work hard to encourage fellow believers to be in the Word, and discern the working of the Spirit, instead of making decisions for one another. Sorry for the book. Just my thoughts….”
  
Sara:  “Thank you, Debra!  We have one in kindergarten and one in preschool. This year we partnered with a local Home School Assistance Program and have loved it.  Our oldest attends some classes at the “home school” and we have a library and field trips that have been wonderful. I went to public school through grade 5, then I moved to a Christian school. My senior year I wanted to go to public school, to strengthen my faith, but my parents convinced me to stay. It’s impossible to know what would’ve happened, had I transferred to public high school, but this I know … in Bible college I greatly struggled with assurance of my salvation (typical of those from my background). I finally had assurance of my salvation, and God called me to teach in a Christian school for 3 years. I loved it, and I still love my students, keeping in touch with many of them. Both of my sisters home schooled (they are 10 and 15 years older than I) with mixed results.  One of them did a fabulous job and I admire her greatly –  but I don’t know if this is what God will have for our family all the way through.  I have confidence that God will lead us in the right direction. And I can trust Him for the future of my children. If it were left up to me, we’d all be in trouble. But, with God, I know all things are possible.”
Carol, Colorado:  “We have done all three of the choices Sara mentioned except our public school is a charter school. We have a unique charter school that is mostly Christian teachers. Our kids have great Christian friends and some friends who aren’t Christians who get to see what it means to be Christian. Our kids get an opportunity to show Christ to these kids and invite them to church and witness to them. We want our kids to be able to know how to be authentic Christians. I agree about evaluating our kids and allowing God to direct where our kids should be schooled. It gets even more interesting when they choose college, but that is maybe another topic.”
Jackie, Colorado:  “My 4th grader daughter and 2nd grade son are in our public school right now. We love our school and really love our teachers. Sure, there have been issues with other students, but my kids are learning how to deal with it and it brings out… many great discussions. They are there because my husband and I think that is where they will receive the best overall education at this point in their lives. I think that my daughter has grown and has learned some very important lessons in life, that she might not have experienced otherwise. My daughter’s teacher is excellent and I could never accomplish what she has done with Skyler. Some of her best friends are at school, and are also Christians. My kids aren’t in the system to convert anyone. They are there because that’s what we have chosen for our family. We love the opportunities that are provided/thrown at us. I also enjoy helping at school and meeting children/parents who live in our area. We also teach our children plenty at home, through our church (that they love!), in AWANA groups and whatever else we can think of. I attended public schools, liberal Christian schools, a very strict Christian school and then Bible college. There are all kinds in all of them. I have also known a wide variety of homeschoolers, including my own sister. Quite the array of pupils and quite the array of results. We have no money for a Christian school, I have never had any desire or prompting to homeschool, there are the pros and cons of charter schools in our area, and we love our public school. At this moment in time, this is what works best for us.”
Kay, Alabama:  “We have used both Christian and Public Schools to assist us in our responsibility to educated our children. God had different paths for us at different times in our lives. Also, different paths for different children. One year we had 2 in …Christian and 1 in Public. To echo much of what has been said above, it is OUR responsibility to educate our children and external schools are just tools to help us. It is important to know the needs of our children and what best suits them. My eldest was a bold witness in the public school. The other 2 had a harder time with peer pressure (not that they were bad kids, it was just a harder path). If you are blessed to have the reinforcement of a good Christian school, please don’t take that for granted. If you use the Public School system, I believe it is very important to stay actively involved. The educational need of our children is something that constantly needs to be evaulated. MUCH prayer. And then, when you’re done, you’ll still probably see where you could have done something differently.”

Dawn, Illinois:  “Public: – I want my children to ‘learn to swim with the sharks while I am still teaching them to swim.’ I want them to learn to stand up for God, to have a Biblical worldview in an ever darkening world, to learn that they WILL be different …and have different standards, and to be salt and light. I cannot tell you how many incredible conversations we have had about “the world’s view” on a variety of subjects vs. God’s view. We go to God’s Word and see why we stand for the values we uphold. Do I like all the junk they are confronted with? No. But then again, I don’t like the junk I have to face on a daily basis. I am glad they are still under my influence so I can expose Satan’s lies and guide them into truth.  I would not mind sending them to Christian school simply because I like the traditional academics and because it might be easier to find Christian friends. But – there is no way we can afford the private schools in our area (It would require me working fulltime and then some.)  I have never felt the Lord calling me to home-school. And I stand in complete awe of mom’s who homeschool. It takes incredible self-discipline and I don’t know how they balance it all.”
Sara: “Thank you for all the fabulous input!  Keep the comments coming!”
Kristen, Iowa:  “Homeschool-for many reasons. We never set out from the beginning to homeschool, but I just couldn’t let my kids go. Now we wouldn’t trade it for anything. My husband is self-employed which makes homeschooling so much easier. When he has… a day off, we take the day off and do field trips. I love having my kids with me all day every day. Next year, my oldest will be a senior. He will be taking 3 classes at public school and 3 online college classes from the community college plus some stuff at home. My #3 child runs track and plays basketball for the middle school. My only regret is not having more children (only 4) so I could keep homeschooling. I only have 6 years left of this amazing time in my life.”
Margy, Iowa:  “I attended public schools and my husband attended Christian schools. Before we had children I taught at both Christian school and public schools. We currently have one son in public high school and 2 that are being homeschooled. I have found the education of our children to be one or the biggest blessings and most agonizing decisions we as parents face. We began homeschooling 12 years ago. I have loved it most days and we have had some very memorable and amazing times together; I think our family is very close in part because of it. However, there are those days when nothing seems to go according to plan and you realize that you aren’t perfect or you worry that you aren’t teaching them everything that they need. I think that is normal and thus we always go year by year and reevaluate. We ask, how is it working for each of us and what if anything can we change, drop, add or improve.? 3 years ago, we realized the answer for our oldest son was—this isn’t working. I was crushed because I thought I had “failed” as a homeschool mom and I had planned to go all the way through high school, but I am so glad we changed our plan because it has been a good thing for him and us. Now we are at another crossroads, our middle child, having heard his older brother talk about jr. high, is curious about it. We don’t think, knowing him and his personality, that going to Jr. High full time is a great idea, so we are going to allow him to take 3 or 4 classes next year. Will they all end up in public school for high school? Maybe, maybe not. I will continue to prayfully consider what works for each of my boys, trust my instinct as a parent and educator and listen to the hearts of my children. I am so thankful for the options we all have. It is a great responsibility and privilege that we have the freedom to choose how our children are educated. I am deeply respectful that the choices I make may not be the choices that work for others, I hope others will be as well. God bless each of you in your journey!”

Sara:  “If we decide to homeschool all the way through, we plan also to dual-enroll at some point. We believe it is extremely important and biblical to teach our children how to live in this world, while still in our home, so they are able to receive our help and guidance as they prepare for “real” life.”
Renee, Iowa:  “I went to Christian school for kindergarten & public school for the rest of my schooling. I didn’t notice a lot of negative influences when I was in school but I was a very shy child with few friends & I’m sure schools have changed a lot in the last decade. That said my siblings & I also had the godly influences of AWANA & Sunday school. My parents did a good job of teaching us that not everything they teach you at school is the truth (i.e.-evolution). If I am ever blessed to have children of my own, I hope to be able to put them in Christian school.”
Sara: “Thank you for sharing, Renee!  It’s great to hear your viewpoint as a single woman.  Truth be told, we begin home schooling the day our child is born!”
Lynda, Michigan:  “We have our two oldest in a charter school. The reason started when we had to make a decision on where to put our oldest. We heard that the public school in our district was a great one. We did consider it, but the biggest thing was my job. I homeschooled her for Kindergarten, but was able to get her into the Charter school for first grade. The charter school we have them in is 10 minutes from my work, so if I am working I can take them to school and pick them up without it interferring with my job. We did not consider private, too much, due to the cost and we wanted our girls to “face the world”. We felt that the charter school is a middle, with the worldly influnces but a rich moral influnces that can help our children be better women. I am in the schools each week to see who my girls are interacting with, see the teacher at maybe not such a great moment and how she handles it and to interact with the school staff. We do not feel that it is the schools responsiblity to totally teach our girls. They are getting the achedemics from the teachers at Achieve, something we feel we can not do at this time. We are still teaching them how to interact with their classmates, solve problems with their peers, be an example of Christ and to respect those that Christ puts in authority over them. Like others have mentioned it is not a decision we take lightly with our girls. We take each year and see if it still the best for them . I do want to mention that I am involved in Moms in Touch, a group that mets and prays for their children and the school.”
Anonymous, Foreign Mission Field: ” I just wanted to tell you that I love homeschooling and so do my kids.  My older two take two classes and one class from a mk (missionary kid) school right by our house and love this also.  I love our decision to do what we have done.  We are a very close family and we all have loved doing school like this….but I have also always had the kids in other activities – church and sports and music.  Their lives are crazy busy.  I love that my three teenagers still love hugging me and they are cool kids…____ is 6foot 1inch and very strong and very cool amongst all his friends, but yet loves kissing my cheek goodbye each day at the door of his school. The states also offers so much where kids can be home schooled but then also take classes thru other sources….the best of both worlds.  All just a thought. I hated going to a public school and was very popular but the kids looked for a way to make me fall into sin because they knew that i was saved. we have friends from ______ that took their kids out of (a Christian school) and we were so sad our last term to see how the oldest girl was wearing extremely short short and different things like that ….like my daughter said…she was just so very different and had changed so very much. any way… I don’t normally write long but i just wanted to share my opinion. Every family is different and different things are best for different families and at different times. We have always taken our homeschooling decision at a year by year basis….always open to if it wasn’t working than we would change.  We love it.  I know for (my friend – a Christian school teacher) that the best was putting the kids back in christian school after knowing that homeschooling was not turning out the right way.  I just want you to know the side of someone that was in public school all my life….I craved christian friends and never had one thru my whole life until I became an adult….it was hard!!!  Any way ….I wrote this very fast because of time….I will pray that God will lead you and he has a perfect plan for your family also. Each mom and each kid is different….if christian school is for you than God will provide also….and if it is public school than he will give christian friends and christian teachers.”
Anonymous, Foreign Mission Field, cont’d:  “One of my friends is a school teacher but homeschooling wasn’t the best fit for her. This taught me a lot. It fits us…I love to stay at home…others hate that….so being tied to my kids and home aren’t a bad thing for me. I love the time I get with each one … I love to see them interact and I love to see them helping each other. The other day I caught _____ reading her book to _____ …. I just can’t tell you the benefits that I see….we have a mk school here right by us and I wouldn’t send my kids there full time because I believe that the kids are not being taught by their parents well enough in the area of thinking of others and reaching out to the lonely.  As a family we talk thru every situation ….my kids are far from perfect but homeschooling allows me time to talk thru the character issues that come up each day.. but again I go back to each family needs to do what works best. For them…you just need to search out what is best for you….God will show you.”

Anonymous, Nebraska:  “My kids go to christian school. We just felt it was the right thing for them. Public school isn’t an option for us at all.  Sending our kids to Christian school as opposed to homeschooling them was what they needed. I had a bad experience when my mom tried to homeschool me. That was one factor. Also my oldest daughter needs to be challenged in more ways than I can offer her. My son really needs the structure of a school setting as well. They really need the social aspect of it too. We are basically the only family at our church and this helps them to have a chance to develop their social skills. I admire those who can homeschool their children. We don’t really have the space to do that either at this time. I do have my concerns about sending our soon to be kindergartner to their school this next year, because of some issues with the teacher, but I don’t know what else to do. That is one of my dilemas that I am praying about.”
Anonymous, Iowa: “I enjoyed reading the responses to your homeschool/private/public school question! Interesting! I have enjoyed homeschooling this past year and we are planning to do it again this fall but I plan to take one year at a time. I have people ask me, ‘so are you going to homeschool through high school?’ I have no idea. I’m just working through kindergarten and 1st grade! I realize each child is different but It always surprises me when moms say they couldn’t teach their kids or couldn’t teach them what they need to know. Teaching – especially reading and spelling – has been FUN! I’m not really a “teacher” but enjoy “teaching like a mom.” Thankfully my daughter has others in her life who are able to demonstrate those “real” trained teacher qualities!”
Anonymous, Foreign Mission Field, con’d.: “Another thing I thought about today was the benefit of spending so much time each morning with my kids memorizing scripture.  It is apart of their schooling, and I doubt if they were in traditional schools if i would have ever been able to train them in this way.  I love the time that we spend reciting chapters of the bible and when the three oldest were little it was really a ton of fun. also family devos when they were little were just wonderful. our morning time was so much Bible stories and Bible memorization.  It was a lot of fun.  I still spend about 30 minutes with each kid memorizing God’s word each morning. two of the kids do it together since they are a year apart. _____ has to do it at a separate time as he practices soccer all morning long. then I do _____ and _____ separately due to learning styles but soon I will be able to do them together.  Also the time homeschooling allows them to excel in other activities is super great.  _____ practices her piano 50 minutes a day and does really well. _____ is up to 45 minutes and _____  plays on a soccer club training him to be a pro…he practices all morning long and then starts school at 1pm.  Not all is rosy as I have one that is always bored and always wanting more – it is ______ my fourth and she is super energetic.  She swims four days a week on a swim team but she is super go go go.  This is a little difficult.  I was thinking today how every kid is different not just every family.  ______ is my one that begs to go to traditional school and maybe one day we will decide that but for now I still feel that she is good at home.” 
Anonymous, Foreign Mission Field, cont’d.: “I was also thinking today as I wrote you …of a missionary friend of mine.  Her husband is always wanting her to homeschool their five kids.  It would not work for her…and she knows that …she is a type of person that really needs her away time and her own time.  She is an amazing mom and always finding fun things for her kids to do but to be with them all day would drive her insane.  But she is an awesome mom and so much more creative for her kids than I ever have been for mine. I also have a friend that is a missionary here in ____ and she home schools…but it is not a good situation because she has no patience at all with her kids and really is not a good example.  We have plenty of faults…. I have two that struggle to get a long but it is a teaching situation and they get better and then fall again and then get better and then fall….but I know that God will have the victory.”
Anonymous, Overseas: “I had wanted to comment on your thread about schooling, but put it off because I was worried about eyes around the world seeing. I have too many unsaved friends who read and keep an eye on everything we do…. And I don’t want them to think we are a cult because we don’t like their educational system. Anyway, a thing to consider is that some parents, not many, but some have no choice on their child’s education. I homeschooled my children for the first year of their education and would have gladly continued until I was unqualified for the higher grades. Then I would have considered a good Christian school if money allowed or some charter school or internet variant. But God decided where He wanted our family and placed us in a country where the government controls everything. Homeschooling is not an option and there are no good schools as you would compare with better choices in the states and so we bathe our children and their days in prayer as we send them into the battle of the world daily. But I am persuaded that following God to this mission field and fighting with and for my kids on this level is not a mistake or worst case scenario. God who makes no mistakes asked it of us so it must be the perfect best at this time for my children.  You are welcome to use or post any of these thoughts on your thread, etc. But you would have to not use names or countries in order to protect our ministry here. Thanks.
Side note. I love reading your articles and your encouragment, but I will have to admit that sometimes I must just take a break from reading about American Christianity because to those of us around the world it seems like a perfect fairytale. I haven’t had a single Christian friend in 6 1/2 years, my children do not know other christian children who stand for the right, our church is our family outside of our Bible studies, we have forgotten what it is to sing corporately and so in order to stay content with where God has placed me and asked of me it is sometimes better not to remember what I am missing. So that is why I sometimes do not comment or write often. Not because I do not care.”  

 Statistics

School Preferences (if they mentioned two or three, I included all):

· Charter – 2
· Christian – 9
· Home – 10
· Public – 11

Where I met these amazing women:
· 7 – Faith Baptist Bible CollegeAnkeny, IA
· 7 – Northland Baptist Bible CollegeDunbar, WI
· 4 – Through my church
· 4 – Various other contacts

Location and Status:
· 10 states
· 2 foreign countries
· 1 single woman
· Mostly married women with young children and teenagers
· All the way up to a super special empty nester

“If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him.”James 1:5