Friday, March 5, 2010

"Me, Graciously Submit?"

I use to be a homeschool mom. I miss it! God called us to put our children in public school this year. This was a very hard decision for me. Not that obeying God is a hard decision, but sometimes the things He calls us to do are hard and we have to make a choice to die to self and obey or live according to our flesh and be willing to suffer the consequences of disobedience. Matt actually heard from the Lord on this decision and asked me to graciously submit. I confess that the gracious part took a while, but I did submit. I remember the specific moment when I finally had a peace about this decision. We had "meet the teacher night" at the boys new schools and I was probably more nervous than they were and definitely more critical. After all I had been their teachers up to this point. I was having to give up control and pass the torch. More than that God was asking me to share my children. I don't like to share my children. I love them and they are mine. Well, they are His, but I absolutely LOVE to spend time with my children. So I walked into these teacher meetings with a little bit of an evil smirk and looking for reasons not to like them. (Don't judge me...I'm just being honest.) As we met with each teacher the Lord just flooded me with such a peace. It was apparent that these teachers had been hand picked by God for my children. Matthew's teacher was very organized, very serious, but very kind and loving. Caleb's teacher was fun, he was lively and he had a section in his classroom full of balls to be played with indoors. Joshua's first year teacher was amazing. She was creative, bubbly, loving and for the icing on the cake... Joshua and his cousin Abby were in the same class. This was something we had prayed for, but had been told was not an option. God showed off. Not that He has to mind you, but He wanted to. We were blessed over and above what we could have asked for. I gave mental assent that night to the fact that maybe Matt really had heard from God on this and maybe graciously submitting was not such a bad idea. I have to tell you, although a little bit ashamed to admit it, it has taken me this long...almost 8 months into the school year to really understand why the Lord has called us to this decision. Don't get me wrong, I would call all of them home tomorrow and homeschool again just so I could have my days filled with these precious blessings, but the blessing of what I have seen in their lives this year has been much more rewarding. I can remember praying over each of these boys before they ever breathed their first breath. I can remember praying and asking the Lord above all else to give them a love for Him and for His word. I can remember praying that God would use my children for His glory, that they would be a blessing, that they would be about kingdom work and that they would have a vision within their hearts that would lift high the name of Jesus and make Him known. I have seen those prayers answered this year. Not that He wasn't answering them before, but I have seen my children being called out and set apart so that God could use them. The first week of school I heard from Caleb's teacher that every chance he had Caleb would talk about Jesus. Caleb has asked this year if he could take his Bible to school and read it to his friends during recess. (I'm not sure how he finds the time since his other objective is how many girls are chasing him during recess. The count as of yesterday was 13, but Caleb says it makes him feel like a real man, so...) Caleb, even through his comedic ways and maybe even using that as a tool, has been able to lift high the name of Jesus and share His love with these 2nd graders. Joshua's biggest downfall this year has been that he says Ma'am too much. I can handle that. I received an e-mail from his teacher the other day saying that Joshua was the kindest, gentlest child with a precious heart. What a blessing. How can I not share that? And then there is Matthew who came home from school the first week and said, "Hey mom, I'm having trouble knowing how to minister to some of the kids in my class." WOW. His teacher cannot talk about him with putting her hand on her heart and she told me the other day that he has been such a blessing to her this year. A blessing!!! Those are the last words out of my mouth as my children leave each morning..."Be a blessing today!" I know you are thinking, "My goodness, she sure does think a lot of her children an she sure does brag on them a lot." Yes I do! I want you to hear my heart and understand that it is none of my doing, but ALL the glory and honor is unto Jesus who has made the difference in their lives. I take NO credit. Jesus says that as we lift Him up, He will draw all men unto Himself. As parents that has been our goal. We just lift up Jesus and He does the rest. He has drawn these precious children unto Himself and He has placed within their hearts a vision and a desire to lift up His name. Keep in mind, they are still boys and we still have our moments throughout the day. We still have plenty of reasons to invoke discipline, but God is still having to do that with me. Imagine with me for a moment what would have happened if I had not graciously submitted. (I know, I know, but just imagine it.) The Hawkins family would have missed out on some opportunities this year to be a blessing. Now I'm not saying that revival has broken out in the Auburn City Schools as a result of my children's testimony. I know God could do that, but if one heart has been revived, if one life has been encouraged, it has been worth it. We would have missed out on the opportunity to be stretched and we would have missed out on the growth He wanted to do within our heart and lives as a family. God may call us to homeschool again. I actually hope He does, but the key for me has been listening to His voice day by day, moment by moment and then submitted to His will. In this case, Matt hearing His voice and me submitting to my husband. Graciously! What is God calling you to do today? Is He calling you to graciously submit to your husband in a certain area? Is He calling you to be obedient to Him in a certain area? Be careful that you don't rob yourself and others of a blessing by standing on your own will. Graciously submit and obey what He is calling you to do today!

"Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything"
"Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you"
"But I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all men to myself."

1 comment:

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