Last week, we began this series on Homeschool Hesitations and today I'm talking about happiness. Somewhere along the way of keeping the peace in circles with vastly different lifestyles, I lost permission to be happy with my choices. In an attempt to not stir up conflict, I find myself being the wallflower especially when it comes to homeschooling stuff, but it ends up being pretty lonely. It's never wise to rub someone's nose in your own satisfaction, but it is good and right to be content and joyful with aspects of your life. Dare I say, it is down right commanded in the Bible - Philipians 4:8. As I've said before All Roads Have Rocks which simply put means no choice is without difficulties. Still, sharing successes and joys should always be a regular part of any relationship!
It's not that different than our lives as Christians. We are happy with our decision to follow Christ, but do you ever catch yourself NOT sharing that joy simply because you don't want to incite conflict with a non-believer? Maybe your lifestyle in Christ absolutely prevents you from the trouble they are having, but you hide your success or joy to prevent an awkward conversation? I find myself there a lot. How many times have you complained about your mother to someone who lost their's when they were young? I've itemized the struggles of marriage to the unhappily single person more than once. Or complained about pregnancy to someone who can't have any? We know of many, many friends with children that are sick, challenged or even haven't survived that immediately puts whatever struggle my children are having into the trash. So, the need to be sensitive and aware of other people's feelings in conversations is very, very real. Even still, that doesn't mean it is wrong for me to ever share the joys of my life.
The differences we possess (either by choice or circumstance) often brings this polarizing effect when, if we were wise, we would use it to learn. I have a lot of (public) teacher friends that have all sorts of approaches and techniques that I can potentially learn from, depending on my needs. My brother is an orchestra director at a local high school - his experiences are a wonderful resource for me, especially as my kids get older. With all of the reviews I'm able to do and the experiences I'm having teaching my kids various subjects, makes me a potentially good resource for someone who's public teachers may not have enough time to address their child's specific needs.
This morning, I slept in until 8, woke up to J reading in his bed and miss Z coloring, got everyone fed, J and miss Z worked on school stuff for about an hour and half and then played with the outdoor/mud kitchen for the rest of the morning. I LOVE that we can spend our time that way without car drop-off lines or frantic morning routines. That makes me happy and you should be able to share whatever makes you happy.
The bottom-line is this: When you find something good, don't hide it.
Always consider others' feelings and be gentle and kind with your words. Always. But continually hiding your joy is not being kind to your family and especially the God who has blessed you.