Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Homeschool: Run Your Own Race

Hebrews 12:1-2 Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

I was watching a TV program where one of the main characters was being coached on how to play chess. After several moves, her coach said, “Remember that you need to play your own game. Don’t try to play someone else’s game.”

I was reminded of what the Apostle Paul said in the verse above. “…run with patience the race that is set before us…” God has set a particular race before each one of us. Your race is not my race. In a race, each runner runs his own race. He cannot run a good race if he is looking at the other runners, thinking about what they might do or how they might run their race. If he does this he is going to get off course and he may not even make the finish line. He is trying to run the other person’s race instead of concentrating on his own race.

God has given us a race to run. Some of us have physical difficulties, obstacles in our race to overcome. It is tempting to look at the race God has given others to run and grumble because we think He has given them an easier course.

Sometimes we have perceived ideas of what others expect of us and try to run the race in a way to please them instead of Jesus. We feel frustrated with our physical limitations and instead of saying no to other’s requests of us when we know it's beyond our physical limits, we say yes and then reap the consequences of taking on more than we can handle.

As homeschool moms we often look at what another homeschool family is doing and then get discouraged because we don't measure up to what they are doing. We need to keep our eyes on the course God has shown us to take and not be looking at the course He has led someone else to take. We need to run our own homeschooling race, not someone else's.

Another area of discouragement is when well-meaning family and friends who don't understand the idea of homeschooling begin to challenge us and try to make us feel we are doing the wrong thing to homeschool our children. It's easy to begin to feel like we need to bring ourselves up to their expectations and run the race they are trying to lay out for us instead of the race God has laid out for us. All of these things will get us off course if are not careful to keep our eyes on the goal that God has given us.

We need to keep our eyes on Jesus. He is the goal we need to look to. If our eyes are on Him, we will stay on course and not be distracted by how others are running or what we think others are expecting of us. Our goal will be to please Him.

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