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How God used a Math Lesson to Teach a Homeschool Mom

Has God ever used homeschool parenting to teach you (the parent) a lesson?  Of course, He has! We all have experienced it.  Sometimes we find working with our children to be frustrating and certainly not an opportunity to draw nearer to God.  But recently as I have been dealing with a difficult personal situation and feeling really out of sorts and cranky at best, God has used a teaching opportunity with my son to teach me.  I kept asking God to please give me some answers as to how to deal with this problem as it seems too big to handle right now.  God seemed very oddly silent. 
   Just the other day, Joshua was struggling to memorize his multiplication facts.  He was getting discouraged trying to remember that huge stack of multiplication cards.  But I knew he needed to commit those math facts to memory or everything else in math would be so much harder.  Then God placed an idea in my head that is used to some extent in Math It.  I suggested to Josh that because he already knew his multiplication facts for the 1s, 2s and 3s pretty good, he should separate out just the 4s next.  With just those few cards, it didn’t seem to daunting to him.  He found a quiet corner and within a few minutes committed those facts to memory.  That same day he mastered the 5s (which are easy), and the 6s.  Because he did them in small doses, he could handle it and memorize it.  Then he stacked them all up all the 1s – 6s and showed me with great delight how he had mastered them.  The next day he mastered the 7s.  The next the 8s and 9s.  What he discovered was that he had already mastered some of the “harder/higher” numbers already in the 3s, 4s, 5s and 6s.  So he had only a few left to learn.  The 10s were a breeze and the 11s are almost mastered.  Now all that remains is a couple of 12s.  He is so excited and math will be so much easier for him.  He used to spend so long trying to figure out a problem because he didn’t know for sure what all his multiplication facts were. 

   God used that situation to teach me to take my problem and divide it into small doses of doable sections.  Instead of trying to tackle it all at once, I need to take a section and work on it until that is mastered and then deal with the next.  And that is how God is longing to parent us always.  We (I) get discouraged and start falling apart because the “things” of life are soooo big.  But God longs to show us to take small bites and chew them well.  I wish I could show you a picture of the pure joy on Joshua’s sweet face as he mastered all but a few cards out of that huge deck of math facts.  I want to remember that look, because that delight can be ours as we master just one small step at a time. 

     And that is what this months article is all about.  It is about parenting by the Spirit.  But the concepts can be used for marriage by the Spirit and total Life by the Spirit.  We aren’t alone even though we feel like it at times.  We have  an awesome God asking us not to get distracted by the amount of work to do or the many other things we have to face, but to instead moment by moment seek His Will and learn that He really only wants us to take small steps so we can master those areas before moving on.  Just like in Mathematics, not knowing those math facts can really hang us up from learning advanced concepts, so we too, need to master one step at a time so we can take on the harder challenges ahead.  Without the first steps being taken, we will flounder over and over again until we learn this simple lesson.    So, here is one homeschool mom learning to take one small piece at a time to master it completely. 

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