"Homeschooling? What is that?"
"Really? How do you do that?"
"Oh... (pause) why?"
"Who teaches them? You? Are you a teacher?"
"I just don't have the patience to do that!"
"What about socialization?"
Since I usually get these reactions from people, I would patiently answer their inquiries as much as I can. Most of the time, people would get it right away. However, there would be times when you see the skepticism in their eyes and they couldn't keep their eyebrows down. When this happens, I just brush it off and let them be especially if they are strangers or persons I just met. But for those who are in my inner circle, it's a little frustrating. Especially those who are very close to me. Every time they say something negative about homeschooling, I find myself defending it and my children. Even if you share the joys and fruits that we are reaping because we choose homeschooling over conventional schooling, their minds are shut and wouldn't listen to reason. It's like I'm in a courtroom and being tried for not sending my kids to conventional school and not EARNING money. Aaargh!
Still, I'm blessed to have met other homeschoolers who have patiently taught and guided their children till high school. I am just in awe at how they teach chemistry, algebra and trigonometry! I wish I could do that... but then again, I have to focus on a preschooler and 4th grader first :-) Talking to these homeschooling moms encourages me to continue with what the Lord has impressed upon us four years ago. It is an honor to be called to teach our children.
Aside from these homeschooling families, there are people though not really that close but has shown support to what we do. They say they couldn't possibly do what we are doing, but I know they can too if they trust God. I thought I was a patient person until I started teaching Math in Grade 1! But the reality is, when God calls us to do something for Him, He will equip us. He will give us the ability to complete the task. And while completing his mission for us, He will sustain us with His grace, love, and supernatural strength. Yes, I mean SUPERNATURAL strength and Looooooooooooooong suffering! :-)
When my father-in-law came to Manila for a visit, he knew that our kids were homeschooled. The last time we saw him was two or three years ago and I don't remember mentioning to him that the kids were homeschooled. So, he met the kids again who are, of course, much older now. We went to my sister-in-law's house and spent the day with my in-laws. Our kids love going to Ninang's (my sister-in-law) house because they get to play with their cousins. They were their usual selves playing endlessly and laughing boisterously all day. As we were relaxing in the afternoon, I saw my father-in-law talking seriously talking to my husband. I didn't want to disturb them so I just let them talk.
Days after the visit to the in-laws, my father-in-law visited our new apartment. The kids were so hyped that that they took out all their stuff, their artwork, paintings and books and showed it to their grandpa. Their grandpa was overwhelmed by the barrage of stuff the kids wanted to show him. Then my father in law says, "You know what? I was not sure about the idea of homeschooling. Not because I question your capability to teach but my concern really was their socialization. But my fears were unfounded. I saw them with their cousins and they were able to relate to them. They can relate to adults too. I see also that you really ground them in the Word of God which is important. Continue what you're doing. If you need any books, let me know."
What an affirmation from the Lord! After all the hard work, we can see something good coming out of this. It feels good to hear that we are doing a great job with our kids especially from my in-laws. But then again, it's all about who gets the credit. We are God's instruments molding these small people the way God wants to mold them. My husband and I were not able to do it by our own strength but because God gives us strength. In the end, it is God whom we want to please not the people around us nor the world.
“I know that You can do all things, And that no purpose of Yours can be thwarted. Job 42:2
"Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship. 2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect. "Romans 12:1-2