Oh, how this is so true...especially for women. I have no idea why that little junior high girl in all of us never truly dies. It seems no matter how hard I try, I just can't kill her! I find myself constantly feeling left out, not having as many friends or invites as others, and just wanting what everyone but me seems to have (even when I can't put my finger on just what it is I think they have that I don't!) And man, does Satan use that to destroy women. Facebook, twitter, pinterest, and instagram have made many women instant enemies, without ever meeting or saying a word to one another, simply by seeing the life someone else seems to have and yours looking bad in comparison. Why do we do this?!?!?! And I am just as bad as the next person.
I think one of the biggest lies Satan has sold Christian women is that there is a battle between stay-at-home moms and working moms or between homeschooling moms and public school moms. But you know what? The only battle there is the one Satan created. Something God has really burdened me about is trying to find a way to cross that line that seems to have been drawn in the sand between these groups. God has really laid on my heart that it's not always the amount of time you spend with your husband and children, but what you choose to do with that time. Even though I am with my kids 24/7, this is still so convicting to me. Many times I get to the end of the day, look back over all we've done, and realize I wasted pretty much every teachable moment I was given. I brushed aside many chances to just love on my kids and enjoy their laughter and smiles. I missed precious moments to spend time in the word with my kids, not because those moments weren't there, but because I chose not to use them.
Homeschool or public school? You know what, that is your choice and something you will have to pray about for your family. It was a very tough decision for us, but the path the Lord was asking us to take was very clear. To choose to send our children to the public school would have been disobedience and we all would have been miserable. However, I know many amazing families who had the same struggle, but God called them to go to public school, and to choose homeschooling would have been disobedience and they all would have been miserable! When it comes to this, for some reason, very heated topic, let me encourage you: seek the Lord and follow Him in obedience. Don't compare. Don't worry what others will think. Obey. You, and those around you, will see the fruit of your obedience.
When it comes to the other heated topic among Christian women/families, staying at home or working, I can only give the same advice. Pray and obey! There is no "one right answer" for every family. And I can't tell you how many times I have just wanted to go back to work where I could feel useful and much less chaotic. But, for me, our whole family was miserable while I was working (and only part-time at that) because I just can't walk away and leave work at work and focus on my family when I am at home. Not taking care of my family is blatant disobedience to God's word (don't even have to pray about that one!), so I knew something had to go. It was either the job or the family...so of course, the job had to go! But, that's me and that's my family. That may not be what God has for you.
I truly hope that I have never made anyone feel bad or wrong for their decision, one way or the other, on homeschooling/or staying at home. That was honestly never my intention. I am just trying to share our journey as honestly as I can so that it might encourage someone else (not really because what I do is so great, but because it's just an honest family doing their best to obey God in all things). I know that I am encouraged by both those who have made the same decisions as us and those who haven't, when I see the great times they have with their family and the creative ways they share their faith and the Gospel with their children.
Lord, give each of us a clear direction as to where you would have our families go. And don't allow us to compare or "be that girl" when it comes to seeing others in their walk of obedience. Help us to love each other and be great sources of love and encouragement to one another!