Am I covering everything I should?

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I doubt there is a homeschooling mama who hasn’t wondered, “Am I doing enough? Am I leaving anything out? Am I covering everything I should?” I believe God has provided a basic framework that will help us step back, make a wise assessment, and go forward with confidence.

Jesus taught each of us to love God with all of our heart, mind, soul, and strength. It was a teaching rooted in the Law of Moses.

You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart
and with all your soul
and with all your might.
Deuteronomy 6:5

Now, Israel,
what does the Lord your God require from you,
but to fear the Lord your God,
to walk in all His ways and love Him,
and to serve the Lord your God
with all your heart and with all your soul . . . .
Deuteronomy 10:12

The wise mama looks at what fills her children’s time during focused learning time, at play, and in the other activities of their lives. Then, she assesses those activities to see how they fit into her children’s:

  • hearts,
  • souls,
  • minds, and
  • bodies.

My prayer for our children, our grandchildren, and for the whole world actually is that each one will love God with his or her heart, soul, mind, and body and that God will bless each heart, soul, mind, and body. To me, that is the whole of life.

Jesus was kind to talk to us in detail about our hearts. His instruction gives us a perfect guideline to use when we assess our children’s activities. He said:

That which proceeds out of the man,
that is what defiles the man.
For from within, out of the heart of men,
proceed the evil thoughts, fornications, thefts,
murders, adulteries, deeds of coveting and wickedness,
as well as deceit, sensuality, envy,
slander, pride and foolishness.
All these evil things proceed from within
and defile the man.
Mark 7:20-23

What a wonderful tool His teaching is for evaluating what our children see, hear, read, and do. The human saying is: “Garbage in, garbage out.” I appreciate Jesus defining exactly what that garbage is. The wise mama and daddy love their children enough not to let them ingest garbage into their hearts, souls, minds, or bodies.

While wise parents are careful to avoid the garbage, they also make sure their children’s hearts, souls, minds, and bodies take in healthy nourishment. Philippians defines healthy heart, soul, and mind nourishment this way:

Finally, brethren, whatever is true,
whatever is honorable, whatever is right,
whatever is pure, whatever is lovely,
whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence
and if anything worthy of praise,
dwell on these things.
Philippians 4:8

So, how do I know that I am covering everything I should? A good place to begin is to fill our children’s minds, hearts, and souls with books, entertainment, experiences, and curriculum that:

  • teaches what is true, honorable, and right,
  • reveals what is pure, lovely, and reputable,
  • applauds what is excellent, and praiseworthy.

They also protect them from any book, entertainment, experience, or curriculum that:

  • encourages evil thoughts, fornication, sensuality, adultery, and wickedness;
  • entices them to envy, covet, and steal;
  • glorifies murder, deceit, and pride;
  • feeds slander; or
  • fosters foolishness.

In Deuteronomy, God teaches us to be diligent in the way we care for our own hearts and souls. He ties hearts, souls, children, grandchildren, and parents’ teaching all together.

Only give heed to yourself
and keep your soul diligently,
so that you do not forget the things
which your eyes have seen
and they do not depart from your heart
all the days of your life;
but make them known to your sons and your grandsons.
Deuteronomy 4:9

You shall therefore impress these words of mine
on your heart and on your soul;
and they shall be as frontals on your forehead.
You shall teach them to your sons,
talking of them when you sit in your house
and when you walk along the road
and when you lie down and when you rise up. 
Deuteronomy 11:18-19

God also offers hope for our future generations. God knew that the Israelites would disobey Him and that He would have to discipline them by sending them into captivity in a foreign land. Centuries before that happened, He promised them:

Moreover the Lord your God will
circumcise your heart and the heart of your descendants,
to love the Lord your God with all your heart
and with all your soul, so that you may live.
Deuteronomy 30:6

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