I have been leading a women’s mentoring program for over 5 years now. Before that I was your typical homeschooling mommy. But even before that I wasn’t a believer and quite honestly didn’t want anything to do with motherhood or Jesus. (that’s a long story and a different blog post).
By the grace of God He saved me and when my oldest was 5 years old I felt called to homeschool my boys. My husband was on his second tour in Iraq and I had just moved to South Florida with 3 boys under the age of 5. I was 26 yrs old and in college.
I had moved from Los Angeles, California where I left my friend who exposed me to homeschooling. I remember thinking I could never do what she does. A few weeks after my move I found myself pondering homeschooling and it would not leave my heart. Believe me I tried to deny it and push it under. I tried to tell God how I was ill equipped to teach my son’s. I even said I only have a high school diploma how can I teach them? I am in college myself striving to get a 2 year degree when will I have time?
Well as you know when the Lord leads you to do something He will not leave you until you are miserable or do what He is telling you. At least that’s how I feel.
But against the prompting in my heart to homeschool I enrolled my oldest in kindergarten. I dropped him off for his first day of school and it was miserable. We weren’t sure what to do or where to go as we had gotten to Florida in September when school had already started. There was no one there to help us navigate the system.
After dropping him off I went to my first play date with my 3 yr old and my 10 month old baby. I met with two women and was enjoying getting to know them when they begin talking about homeschooling their children. I was like serious Lord of all the playdate women in this area you send me two that are going to be homeschooling. I felt chased down at this point and wondered if this was how Noah felt when he disobeyed God. I mentioned I would like more info about a homeschool support group that they were talking about. I went to get my son and that’s when I felt overwhelmed with choas I didn’t know how to go through the car loop and almost got pulled over by the police plus someone yelling at me that I was doing the car loop wrong. I found a parking spot called the homeschool support group leader and said what do I need to do to start homeschooling?
She told me how to start and after hanging up with her I marched into the school building went to the front desk and told the lady that I needed to get my son out of school. I also told her that I needed the paperwork to begin home-schooling my son and that he would not be back the next day.
This began my journey into leadership, dependence on God and obedience.
I learned my first important lesson as a leader and that lesson is prayer. Prayer would be the foundation to everything that I did for my children and my family. Prayer was how I picked my curriculum. Prayer what how I asked the Lord to reveal to me how to teach my children. Prayer got me through the hardest days of my early years of motherhood and homeschooling. Prayer sustained me as I waited patiently for my husband to come home.
The second lesson that I learned as a leader was putting God and His word before everything. I taught my children Bible verses. I taught them how to read the Bible themselves. I also had to learn to study the Bible for myself so that I was able to answer my children’s questions about the Bible and God. This taught me to depend on the word of God and His word daily as to set an example to my children.
The third lesson that I learned as a leader was recognizing the gifts of others and their learning styles. My children were created all differently and were all gifted differently because of this I had to learn to be flexible in the how I taught them stuff. I also had to learn how to relate to them according to their learning styles. I had to assess them and figure out what works for them so that they could be better educated. The Lord showed me we are all unique and that’s ok.
I often share with other leaders that being a homeschooling mom was the foundation to my leadership skills being sharpened, strengthened and challenged. If it weren’t for my children I would not be the type of leader that I am today for my boys, women and others. My children have taught me many lessons throughout our homeschooling experience and they continue to teach me lessons daily as we are all still growing as a family and learning each other’s strengths and weakness.
My boys are now 14, 11 and 9 years old. I no longer homeschool however, the public school has given me different types of teaching lessons. I wholeheartedly embrace this new experience because I saw how God used my obedience to His calling in the past and I get to see how He will use this season for our future. I am extremely thankful that I get to be a leader first to my children and then to those around me.
Remember the Lord can use anyone to teach you how to be a better leader in His kingdom.