Wednesday, January 13, 2010
What is your home?
The image I have of our home, homeschool included, is the image of the space station in Huston. Now before you go any further, all I know about space exploration and rocket science I learned from Hollywood and the odd "Jetsons" cartoon so those of you with rocket science degrees, don't laugh too hard at my analogies and just try and stick with me OK? Good.
WHAT do I think a space station does?
Now, from what I gather, space stations do lots and lots and lots of preparation and planning and equipping. Then they send their rockets, shuttles and other big things that go WHOOSH into space. They remain a place of support and contact for personnel who have been crazy enough to sit in the big things that go WHOOSH (I know that 'cause Tom Hanks said "Huston, we have a problem.") and then they go and pick up people who have crash landed into the sea (or wherever), debrief them and prepare them to do it all over again.
WHYis this like my home?
Right now I am preparing and equipping my children to go off on huge adventures - possibly even in big things that go WHOOSH (Tool Man would go nuts for that). There are four extraordinary little people in this house (five if you count the latest bear cub who is cooking away in there). They were created in my womb, but they weren't created by me. They were created by God, according to His purpose, to work to His Glory. They were NOT created to stay here with me every day for the rest of their lives. This I need to keep in mind as I raise them. I need to help train them for their role in the big things that go WHOOSH.
Imagine if NASA rushed in every time an astronaut made a mistake on the simulator and gave them a lolly just so their developing 'astronaut self-esteem' wouldn't be bruised? Every single take off would crash and burn! Astronauts are trained and taught using their mistakes to learn from. Their equipment is checked, double checked and triple checked. If their special astronaut-y job is to press the red button they learn everything there is to know about the red button 'till they can press it in their sleep. They are prepared physically, mentally and emotionally for the rigors of their mission. They are trained to work with their support team and their co-workers under all sorts of conditions - even the ones they don't like. They are trained for every scenario ever experienced and some that haven't ever happened, just in case. In this way, it is my job to train the little people in my care.
When they are out there in the black, I won't be there to direct them, watch them, protect them. They will be out on their own my voice often just a noise from a speaker. I can advise, I can brainstorm solutions with them, I can draw on my hard earned expertise and pick the brains of others - but in the end it is them who will be making the decisions and THEM who will live with the consequences. I pray that we will have the type of relationship that will mean they can call on me any time without fear of 'static' on the line (judgement, condemnation, 'interesting family dynamics' etc.) and I pray that their shuttle will be "...thoroughly equipped for every good work" (2 Tim. 3:17) and most of all I pray that they a strong lifeline to God, collecting their navigational data and Life Support straight from the Source. But it is THEM who will be flying the thing, not me.
Then there is the whole landing deal. If it goes well, I hope I am there to celebrate with them. If it doesn't, I hope this home can be a safe place to crash for a while and regroup, reassess and set out again.
So how do I know if we have done it? When can we call a mission a success? The answer is, the only missions that are completely unsuccessful are the ones that fail to get off the launch pad or the ones we learn nothing from.
HOW do I go about making this home into a space station?
These are some of the things that we do:
* Write the Word of God on their hearts, no mission is thoroughly equipped without it and it will not return to Him void. (2 Timothy 3:16-17, Isaiah 55:10-11 )
* Actively guide and train their characters (Proverbs 22:6, Proverbs 23:13-14)
* Pray for them. (James 5:16, 2 Thessalonians 1:11-12)
* Facilitate them to follow their calling as best we can (no point training them to press the red button when they are chosen to press the BLUE button is there?!) (Jeremiah 1:5, Psalm 33:11)
* Love them to bits, no matter what!
And if by some miracle we get all this right, where do we expect our children to go?
TO INFINITY AND BEYOND!
(see, movies are educational)
What about you? How do you see your home?