My Demotion to Homeschooling

On one hand, the decision was easy. Everything: finances, family stress levels, our son’s crushing feelings of defeat, being expatriates, the advice of friends and family. Everything seemed to clearly point to one solution: try homeschooling.

On the other hand, the decision was excruciating. I was directing our children’s church ministry. I led worship songs for ladies’ bible study. I trained children’s ministry workers. I taught in various capacities. I led our small junior high ministry. I met with and advised other ministry leaders. And homeschooling would derail all that.

How could I stop doing ministry? How could that possibly be what God wanted for my life? Was He not happy with all I had been doing? Was my service unworthy?

So we made the decision, knowing it was right. But in my heart I struggled. I felt that God had demoted me. From teacher of many, to teacher of few. From a robust active schedule to stay-at-home-mom. From positions of leadership to peon. 

During that first year of homeschooling, I was busy surviving. But at times of weariness or frustration these words would haunt me. Lies from the pit of hell:  “Too bad God’s not letting you do important stuff anymore.”

Over and over, I repented of my pride and discontent. Intellectually I knew I was doing the right thing and that should satisfy. But I struggled.

Until God set the story the man possessed by legions of demons in front of me. I read it with trembling hope, over and over, in Matthew, Mark and Luke. That naked, homeless guy who lived in the cemetery. The uncontrollable guy who broke chains was transformed by Jesus. He sat at Jesus’ feet fully clothed and perfectly sane.

Now I don’t really know what to think about demon possession or all those drowned pigs, but this caught my undivided attention:

From Mark 5
18 As Jesus was getting into the boat, the man who had been demon possessed begged to go with him. 19 But Jesus said, “No, go home to your family, and tell them everything the Lord has done for you and how merciful he has been.” 20 So the man started off to visit the Ten Towns of that region and began to proclaim the great things Jesus had done for him; and everyone was amazed at what he told them. (New Living Translation)

The man begged Jesus for the chance to go. Jesus said yes, but go home. The same Jesus who calls followers to go into all the world, also calls them to go home. These calls are not mutually exclusive. Surely, the world includes the my home!

What felt like a demotion to me for so long was the very calling of Jesus. Whether you arrive there via the cemetery, homeschool or whatever path God has put before you, heed His call. Let Him transform your life. Then go proclaim to your family all the great things Jesus has done for you. Perhaps your “Ten Towns” will benefit as well.

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