I’m an ordinary dad with no special qualifications for the job. At times I wonder why God entrusted kids to me. The Maker of the Universe, the Sovereign Lord of All, entrusted an ordinary, normal, everyday, sinful human with the care and instruction of souls. What was He thinking?
Well, it turns out that God hasn’t left the job entirely in my hands, so He knew what He was doing. He’s given me His Word and His Spirit; what else could I need? It also turns out that what God commands from me, He empowers within me. That doesn’t mean there is no need to work diligently to become a better father and to strive earnestly as I teach and train my children. But it does mean that God will help me in my striving; He will give me the tools, resources, and strengh I need to accomplish this most humble duty of being a parent.
- What was God thinking? He desired for me to share His story, the story of fall and redemption, to the next generation. (Psalm 78:1-8)
- What was God thinking? He desired to use an ordinary man to do His extraordinary work. (I Corinthians 1:26-28)
- What was God thinking? He desired that every family in heaven and earth glorify Him – since they find their being in Him. (Ephesians 3:14-15)
God the Father desired to use me in order to showcase His power through me. I came to this job with nothing: no qualifications, certifications, and nothing on my resume to fit the job description.
Well, actually, there was that one thing on my resume. Right there at the top of the document it says, “Saved by the grace of Christ.” That’s all it took for God to find me competent for the greatest job on earth (other than being a husband) – the job of being a dad.
I bet you know exactly how I feel, don’t you? There are times when nothing seems to be going right, times when siblings nag each other, when angry words escape your own lips, when going to church seems like a chore, when homeschooling seems more like a duty than a delight. There are times; they are real, and they are difficult.
Even though the job of parenting is difficutl, my guess is that you put on a pretty good show in front of others. You act like homeschooling and discipling your children is no big deal – especially in front of the people who are questioning your educational choices. My guess is that you tell the in-laws how wonderful your children are doing in Physics, Computer Programming, and Literature. My bet is that you make certain to tell the in-laws about all the social events your children attend; “They are in choir, baseball, lego engineering class, and youth group. It’s a wonder they call it homeschooling since we are hardly ever home.”
Back at home, in the quiet hours of the night, you’re not so confident. The nagging questions remain in the dark corners of your mind, “Is this working? Will my children end up living normal, well-adjusted lives? Will they get into college? Will they get good jobs? Am I cut out for this?”
Yep, I know the feeling. But here’s the reality – long, long ago God thought about all of this. Long before you decided to homeshcool, God decided to use parents as the primary vehicle to train the next generation. He decided to use me, an ordinary man. And he decided to use you. God knew before the sun ever cast it’s first rays upon the earth that you and I would make this educational choice, but He gave us children anyway. My decisions regarding the education of my children don’t catch God unaware. God doesn’t say, “Homeschooling is a good option, but not for you.” Not at all. He knew my wife and I would find homeschooling attractive and He has plans to work through this decision for His glory and the good of our family.
God doesn’t gaurantee any one of my children will be the next great inventor or artist, politician or author, but He does gaurantee to help me in my time of need if I turn to Him (Hebrews 4:14-16). Do you need Him as you parent? I do. As I wonder what He was thinking, I pray and ask for His help to accomplish the job He has given to me. He is faithful and always helps me in my time of need.
What was God thinking? He was thinkging about me and my children, you and your children, long before the world began. His plans will not fail – even when I do. For that I praise Him.