Do We Have to Give Up Our Dreams?

Michelle Painter

Several months ago, I heard a surprising comment that indicated that home educating meant that we, as mothers and fathers, had to sacrifice our own dreams to provide the home schooling opportunity to our children.  Since that time, I have pondered the question, "Does home schooling really mean we have to give up our dreams?"  So, in examining this issue, I sought answers from the Bible.  Though studying, I've been blessed with four important revelations that encouraged my own spirit regarding any former dreams of my own.  I pray that they encourage you as well.

1. Align completely with God's plans.  Be sure that your "dreams" are also the dreams that God has planned for you.  If you are home educating with the nagging thought of all the self-designed dreams that you have sacrificed, then you are missing out on a multitude of blessings.  Having a God-focus provides the best dreams of all for you and your family.

For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.  Jeremiah 29:11

2. Claim contentment.  God is the one who has given you the perfect gifts of the exact children that you have.  God is the one who blessed you with a calling you to home educated them.  Both of these and so much more are God's perfection planned just for you!  He knows best of all exactly what we need and exactly when we need it.  Our contentment suffers when we think we know better.

For I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances.  Philippians 4:11

3. Seek God's wisdom.  If you feel like you are clueless… join the club.  What home school mom hasn't felt clueless from time to time?  We can educate ourselves by reading a million books, going to a billion seminars, meeting with a trillion support groups, etc., etc., etc.  However, if we have done all of these and not first sought God's wisdom, then we will still be clueless in the long run.

If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him.  James 1:5

4. Have faith.  No matter how challenging, no matter how exhausting, no matter how monotonous, no matter how overwhelming, no matter any of the multitudes of excuses that we can come up with, God provided the hope we have by choosing to home educate our children… we must simply have faith that He will see us through!

Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. Hebrews 11:1

Does choosing to home school mean we have to give up our dreams?  I don't believe that it does at all.  In fact, following God's calling to home school has showered me with realities better than any dreams I could have ever imagined before.  He has generously supplied all the contentment, wisdom, patience, and every need of my heart when I keep my focus wholly on Him.  He has astonished me with so many, many blessings that were previously undreamt of before embarking on this challenging, rewarding, privileged, God-led journey.  I pray that you, too, will allow Him to fill you to overflowing with His absolute best! 

Michelle Painter is a wife and best friend to Bobby, a mother to four amazing sons, and a former public school teacher called by God to home school.  She considers home schooling a challenge, a privilege, and an undreamt of blessing.  She prays that others may glean encouragement, empowerment, and blessings from what she writes.  She would love to hear from you at her blog,

*Originally posted September 21, 2009