Priority One and Priority Two

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When mamas are homeschooling day in and day out, it is easy to wonder constantly, “Am I covering everything?” A better question is: “Am I covering the most important things?”

A lawyer once asked Jesus, “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?”

Jesus told him:

“You shall love the Lord your God
with all your heart, and with all your soul,
and with all your mind.” 
This is the great and foremost commandment. 
The second is like it,
“You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”
Matthew 22:37-39

Math and English and history and science and other traditional school subjects are important, but they pale in comparison to the most important things. Loving the Lord our God and loving our neighbor are essential skills your children can use every day of their whole lives.

Isolation, alienation, and loneliness are rampant among the young and old in our culture and among many who are between those ages. God never intended this for the creatures He created in His image. He created us to have a relationship with Him and relationships with one another. Adam being alone was the first thing God ever declared to be “not good.”

Barbara Mortensen works as a fire and airplane lookout
in New Hampshire during World War II.
Photo by John Collier Jr. Courtesy Library of Congress.

God designed for us to live in families. He planned for parents to take care of their children while their children are growing up and for children to honor their parents when their parents are old.

Grandmother and children in New Orleans, Louisiana.
Photograph in the Carol M. Highsmith Archive,
Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division.

God planned for Christians to have daily fellowship with one another.

Day by day continuing with one mind in the temple,
and breaking bread from house to house,
they were taking their meals together
with gladness and sincerity of heart, 
praising God and having favor with all the people.
Acts 2:46-47a

God teaches us to serve others by feeding the hungry, clothing those who are unclothed, and visiting the sick and those in prison. He teaches us to:

Be kind to one another,
tender-hearted, forgiving each other, 
just as God in Christ
also has forgiven you.
Ephesians 4:32

You have an opportunity every day to train your children to make God’s priorities their priorities. Priority number one and priority number two are to love God and to love our neighbors. The two are inseparably linked. Without them math and English and history and science don’t really matter.

We love, because He first loved us. 
If someone says, “I love God,”
and hates his brother, he is a liar; 
for the one who does not love
his brother whom he has seen,
cannot love God whom he has not seen. 
And this commandment we have from Him,
that the one who loves God should love his brother also.
1 John 4:19-21



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