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|The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine |
We're Barely Paying Our Bills June 8, 2011
Are you barely able to pay your bills? You are not alone! In these uncertain economic times, many of us wonder what the future holds for us and our children. An uncertain future equals certain difficult decisions in the present. How much do we spend on groceries, curriculum, or clothing? We begin to make plans to cut back where we can.
While we are making our plans, we should remember whence we came and where we are going. Looking back, we see many hard times of uncertainty or depression within only a few generations. For those who didn't know the God who provides, they were times of great fear and despair. For those who knew their great God, they were times of proving His faithfulness. He is the same God Who will be faithful to provide for our own daily bread.
God will also give us what we truly need to obey Him in educating our children at home. Unlike the government school system, you don't need to pour more money into education to achieve a better outcome. In fact, it matters little how much money was spent on a homeschooled child's education. Even with the smallest amount of money, homeschoolers succeed academically, because it's not about how much we spend. The environment of home education is what makes it successful: parents teaching their own children in their own home. If you are still deciding what to do with your children this next year, don't worry about the expense, worry about your children, and bring them home where they belong. Homeschooling has been, and is still, the wisest choice. No matter what the cost, it will be the best investment you've ever made.
God wants us to invest not only in His children, but in His Kingdom, where neither rust can corrupt nor thieves steal. Investing in God's Kingdom will reap eternal dividends that can never be taken away.
Looking back at our own lives, we see God's faithfulness; looking forward, we can trust in His provision. Looking up, we can glory in His Majesty.
"Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee. So that we may boldly say, The Lord is my helper, and I will not fear what man shall do unto me." Hebrews 13:5-6
Keep looking up!
TOS Senior Editor
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Hey from Gena
Gena Suarez, Publisher of TOS
Hey everyone, I think that this particular topic resonates with many (or even most) of you right now. I know it does with us, too. The economy has really taken its toll on people. Families have been displaced. Men have lost work. Homes have been given back to the bank. Still, I can't help but point my eyes back to Christ, the Lover of our souls and our Sustainer. He promised never to leave us or forsake us, and He tells us in His Word that He WILL provide for us. The birds and the flowers . . . remember those passages? How much more does He care for us, His children. Sometimes it feels like hell on earth. The trials can loom large. But eternity is coming, and the things we are going through here on this earth are about as "hellish" as things will ever be for us, the believers. In our real life, the one to come, there will be no tears, no more pain, worry, suffering. Still, you say, "But how does this help me NOW? I am losing my home or my (you fill in the blank) NOW." Well, I can tell you that Paul and I can relate. TOS Magazine, for instance, was easier to run a couple of years ago before the economy reared its ugly head. We work twice as hard now for the money, and the stresses are large. We at times become anxious and have to go to His Word to read His commands about being anxious for NOTHING. He has it in His hands, He is on the throne (even if we are frantically looking to see Him but can't seem to).
Paul said something to me this morning (as I was lamenting about our own trials). I was basically saying in a moment of frustration that I didn't "see" God. He very seriously looked at me and said, "Well, are you reading His Word? You won't find Him by looking around. You won't see Him talking audibly to you. He speaks to us through His Word, the Bible. LOOK for Him there." Christ said that the man who reads His Word and does it will stand. That is what we need to do. So, I'm in here writing this little column, but Paul said to come out to the living room because we're going to continue our study in Luke with Julia (14). We're going to shut up the computers and look for Him. We try to have Bible studies daily, but you know what? Sometimes we need more than what we think we do. If we can't find Him, we better run TO Him, and we can do that by reading His very words to us. What comfort there is there.
So I'll leave you with that. I'm off to go find my Great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, the Provider. He will hold us in His hands. Fear not, friends. He has you in His palm, too, right where you belong. Now-go get into His Word and find YOUR comfort today.
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| The Familyman|
Todd Wilson, Familyman Ministries
Todd is in Canada with his family and is having some trouble finding an internet connection. To keep up with his family adventures on the road, you can visit Familyman Ministries, where he posts updates whenever he gets the chance.
|It's Just Common Sense|
Ruth Beechick, Curriculum Specialist
Debbie Strayer, Homeschool Consultant
Over our time as homeschoolers, I was sure of two things. First, that we were called to homeschool. It was not my idea, it was God's idea. My husband and I agreed it was His plan for us, and so we began. Though we were teachers, it didn't take long to realize that homeschooling would not be about our knowledge but about His grace.
"And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose."
Romans 8:28 NIV
The second thing I knew was that God was for us. He was not interested in my perfection as a homeschooler, but He was very interested in my choice to trust Him.
"What, then, shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all-how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?"
Romans 8:31, 32 NIV
How does this relate to finances? There was one particularly difficult season in our lives when I needed to work outside the home. I had begun homeschooling and loved it, so we continued to homeschool at night. God provided for my sweet children during the day, but my heart's desire was to be home with them. Again, I had to trust His calling and favor.
Through that brief season, which seemed like an eternity at the time, God did indeed release me from that outside job. I returned to my life as a stay-at-home mom with a depth of gratefulness for everyday things that I had not known before. I couldn't thank my husband enough for the precious gift of homeschooling he gave the children and me. Though there were other times of financial challenge, that early season taught me much. We united as a family in gratitude and approached future challenges together in prayer, support, and shared sacrifice. We knew there may be a cost for following God's leading, but we also knew we would pay it together.
Trust Him to use all things for your good. Trust Him for His unfailing favor and grace. Trust Him to help you respond to each situation with grateful hearts. Then you can trust Him to use you and your children to be just what He has called us to be: a ray of hope to a lost and lonely world.
Read more from Debbie at www.debbiestrayer.com.
|Contest Central |
For the month of June, 2011
Wise Words for Moms
Wise Words for Moms is a chart designed to aid moms as they address and correct sinful behavior in their children. This chart was written by Ginger Plowman, author of "Don't Make Me Count to Three! A Mom's Look at Heart-Oriented Discipline" and is based on the ideas and principles expressed in that book.
Four pages of sinful behaviors are listed, including everything from stirring up strife, bragging, complaining, and giving up to whining, worry, and revenge. Next to each "problem" is a space for "Heart Probing," "Reproof (Put Off)," "Encouragement (Put On)," and "Additional Verses."
Under "Heart Probing," we are given questions to help our children examine the motive behind their behavior and determine the heart issue. For example, under "Defiant Attitude," we are prompted to ask, "Are you obeying or disobeying with your attitude?" "Are you truly obeying when you obey with an unhappy heart?"
"Reproof" lists some verses to share with our children. In this case, "It is wicked for you to harden your face and foolish for you to despise instruction." Prov. 21:29. "Encouragement" lists verses showing what we should do. "A wise heart accepts command and a happy heart makes the face cheerful." Prov. 10:8. Additional verses are then listed. ( . . . )
Read the rest of the review here. Win this book for your family!
Email Deb with your name and mailing address and the subject "Wise Words" for a chance to win* this book!
|*Disclaimer and Legal Notice:|
The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC ("Company") is sponsoring the June Contest Central contest running from June 1, 2011, to June 30, 2011. You must be 18 years of age or older and follow all rules to participate. Entering the contest constitutes full and complete acceptance of, and a warranty that the entrant has read, understands and agrees to, all contest terms and conditions, including without limitation all of The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC Contest Rules ("Official Rules") and The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine Writer Guidelines and Terms and Conditions for Submitting Queries. All Official Rules apply. Entry also constitutes full consent and unlimited permission for Company to print, publish, broadcast and use all intellectual property and personal information submitted as part of the Contest entry on the Internet and in any and all Company publications in accordance with the Rules. Entries become the sole property of Company and will not be returned. Employees and independent contractors of The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, Contest sponsors, individuals or entities furnishing Contest prizes and their family members may not participate in this contest. Company reserves the sole, discretionary right to determine contest winners and to cancel, terminate, modify, or suspend the contest or the Rules at any time with or without notice or cause, subject to applicable law. See Official Rules for details.
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