Loving the Lord and Loving Others
March 5, 2019
In This Issue:
Mercy Every Minute  
It’s Why We Homeschool

If you were in my home, you would hear me telling my children to love God and love others almost daily. Why? Because Deuteronomy teaches us to teach our children this one truth all day long. 
It is why I am home educating. 

It is the command of the “what” I am to teach. Often we have to put aside the math, language arts, and science and teach this one thing. It is that important. 

Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD: And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up (Deuteronomy 6:4-7).

I teach my children this truth when they are very young by putting up my first two fingers. One finger up is “Love God” and two fingers up is “Love Others.” When the children are not treating each other kindly, sometimes I will just put two fingers up, and they know what I mean. As they get older, we talk through each situation and ask the questions, “Were you loving God when you did/thought/said that?” and “Were you loving others when you did/thought/said that?”

But this part gets me every time. Because it means that it is my purpose in life also. Am I setting a good example? A Godly example? Am I responding in a way that reveals a love for God or a love for others? 

Many of us want to do great things for God, but just not this one thing—with that one child or that friend or spouse. And if we can’t do this one thing, we can’t do anything great or holy.
Because, if I don’t love others, I am not loving God. Ouch! That hurts. Some days, I have a hard time loving others . . . especially right in my own house. I mean the God-kind of love, not my own shallow feelings. 

How do I love like Him? I get to know Him. I get in His Word and study His loving, gracious, and merciful character. I am none of these things, but as I yield to His Holy Spirit and get out of the way, He can live His character through this earthen vessel. 

Why do you homeschool? I hope it is to teach your children to love their one true God with all they are—spirit, soul, and body. And then to reach out and love others like you are learning to do, too. You have the best opportunity to do this as you keep them Home Where They Belong.

~ Deborah
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Easy and Hard

For the record, it's easy to love God. After all, He first loved us . . . drew us to Himself, loves us unconditionally, and never screams, throws a fit, or says “You don't like me!”

Your kids on the other hand . . . not as easy sometimes. And yet, God says things like “If you've done it for the least of these . . . you've done it unto Me; they will know you are my disciples by your love for one another.” That means when we're serving and loving our ungrateful children . . . we're serving and loving God.

The opposite is just as true: when we don't act like we love our children . . . we're not loving God.

Some have said, “Well, I can't love others UNTIL I love God.” When a better way to say it is “I love God WHEN I am loving others (including my spouse and children).”

Somehow, God must feel loved when you smile at your children, forgive your children, and hold and love your children. In this season of life, maybe the way you show God how much you love Him is by loving your family as you homeschool.

Just a thought.

Be real,

PS - Life feeling a little hard right now? That means you're in a good spot. Get the book Family Is Hard AND the audio CD of the LIVE talk for just $10.
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Lee Binz, The HomeScholar
3 Big Ways to Show Love

How do busy homeschoolers focus on loving the Lord and loving others? You do that in three big ways, each building on each other incrementally. 

1. Love the Lord: Read the Bible

Individually, loving the Lord begins with reading the Bible during a daily quiet time. Corporately too, within your family, this step in your faith is important. You can focus on teaching your children the importance of daily immersion in the instruction and correction of the Lord. Put Bible class on your homeschool transcript. Most private Christian schools do that, and you can, too. Just because you are doing it from love and obedience doesn’t mean it’s not also an academic class in high school. 

2. Love your Calling: Embrace your Vocation 

Your mission is to raise your children in the training and instruction of the Lord, according to Ephesians 6:4. The hard thing is when we read about the Proverbs 31 woman, it can be distracting. In that passage you read about the lifetime of The Wife of Noble Character. But we aren’t embracing ALL the vocations we have had or will have in our lifetime. We are embracing our job here and now—homeschooling our children. The other vocations we may have later can wait. Right now, right here, this homeschooling “thing” is our job. 

If you are wondering how to be a better home educator, the answer is homeschooling. Investing in your vocation WILL make you a better home educator. Part of your job is to shape and mold your child’s behavior. You immediately reap the rewards of a closer relationship with your child, too!

Homeschooling can make your child more pleasant to be around. At the same time, it will increase your love for your child and your awareness of their academic needs; so you will become a better home educator over time. You can see that homeschooling will make you a better home educator as time goes by. 

3. Love Others: Service to Family and Community

We are called first to serve our family, and all the hours of do-gooding can’t compensate for a lack of homeschooling or serving your own children. Don’t let your long-term goal of service to community overshadow your priority goal of today: service to your family. 

Homeschooling is such an efficient method of education that actually gives you more time to provide service to others. There will be days and seasons of homeschooling where you can provide a service to your community as a family. Serving at Vacation Bible School, Sunday School, soup kitchens, and clothing banks are part of our goal to raise children in the training and instruction of the Lord. The Lord calls on us to help the poor and helpless, as it says in Psalms 82:4. When we are called to do that, then we can also meet our first priority of serving our family. 

Homeschooling is an effective way of educating, that’s true, but it also has long-term repercussions that help grown adult children live in the real world of adulthood. In a study by NHERI, homeschoolers are more likely to engage in community service as adults than the general population ( The effect of youth schooling type on civic engagement.) When we focus on homeschooling first, it doesn’t mean we are doing that to the exclusion of serving others. Instead, it means that we are raising a generation of young people who will grow up to serve communities in the future. 

Lee Binz,  The HomeScholar  is a dynamic speaker and  author   of over 30 books on homeschooling high school. She is an expert on  homeschool transcripts  and getting scholarships. Lee’s mission is to encourage and equip parents to homeschool through high school. You can sign up for her free  monthly homeschool e-newsletter  where you can also get a daily dose of high school help. Check out the  homeschool freebies    on the website. You can also find Lee on Facebook at  Facebook.com/TheHomeScholar .
Teaching Love

In Matthew chapter 22, Jesus is speaking to crowds. He’s been questioned about taxes by the Pharisees and about the Resurrection by the Sadducees. Both groups have tried to ensnare Him, and they just can’t. Then, starting in Matthew 22:34, the Pharisees gather together and a lawyer decides he can test Jesus and find fault in Him. So he asks. . .

“Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?”

And Jesus answers. . .

“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 first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.”

Loving Jesus with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength is a tall order. It demands we remember all our time, money, energy—even our thoughts—belong to Jesus. We are just stewards of them. When we love God, we serve Him, His kingdom, and His people with our lives.

I think the very best way to teach our kids to love the Lord and to love others is to be certain we're loving God ourselves. We have to love those around us just like we love ourselves. I don't know about you, but I tend to love myself a little more than I should. I always make sure I have clothes to wear and food to eat—food I like, I might add. I'm pretty good about making sure I have everything I really need and a few things I want, too.

Love isn't a touchy-feely emotion. Love is a decision. It's an action. Love shows up when it's hard. Love serves. Love puts others first.

We taught our kids to love the Lord by praying with them and reading the Bible and memorizing Scripture together. We show up for worship together. We talk about how the Lord's Word applies to our daily lives. Sometimes we deny our own desires because they just don't line up with God's Word.

Likewise, we taught our kids to love others by serving together. We dished up soup, pulled weeds, moved people in, cleaned houses, and painted side-by-side with our boys from the time they were very young. We talked about how much we love Jesus and love his people. We told them that we love others because God first loved us. We showed up for relationships, and our kids showed up right alongside us.

Serving others in love can be difficult when you’re sick, potty training is going awry, you don’t know why you’re teenager isn’t home yet, and your husband isn’t picking up the phone. It’s hard to love others by displaying patience, kindness, and gentleness. It isn't easy to share your time, space, and resources.

And yet we do. Because that is love. Our kids are wonderful imitators, and they will love like we do.

Danika Cooley is an award-winning children's author , and the developer of the popular Bible Road Trip™ curriculum. Grab your free Sample Pack here .
"The World Is Your Schoolhouse," so take your family out to enjoy God's Creation. Learn how to homeschool while traveling, and discover how important it is to learn another language. Order your copy of the Spring 2019 issue of  The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine  today for spring shipment.


Look What's Happening This Month!

Book Now for the Refresh FPEA Marriage Cruise 2020. (January 4-12, 2020) Embarkation: Fort Lauderdale, FL. Ports of call: Grand Turk, San Juan, St. Kitts, St. Maarten.  www.fpea.com/Cruise2020   For more information, contact  Office@fpea.com  or  www.fpea.com


Look What’s Happening This Month!

Homeschoolers of Maine is hosting their 29th Annual Homeschool Convention on March 21-23, 2019 at Samoset Resort in Rockport, Maine. Contact Kathy Green, homeschl@midcoast.com for more details. https://www.homeschoolersofmaine.org/events/annual-convention/overview/

Look What’s Happening This Month!

Homeschool College and Career Exploration Day at Elizabethtown College

Saturday, March 23, 2019 8am to 1:30pm
This is a FREE event, which includes continental breakfast and lunch, but registration is required! 
More information at:  https://chaponline.com/events-etown/  

Are you trying to figure out how to assign separate classes to each of your students within  SchoolhouseTeachers.com ? Watch this  tutorial  to learn how to use the great Bookmark feature to organize course assignments!

Share this newsletter with a friend, and be sure to let those 
CONSIDERING  homeschooling know about the enormous  FREE  info-pack which awaits them here:  www.TryHomeschooling.com .
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Every class is INCLUDED for ultimate members! 
No limits.
On SchoolhouseTeachers.com, we offer dozens of homeschool Bible study courses and resources for you and your family. From animated Bible cartoons for the little ones to resources to help your teen build a strong foundation, address cultural issues, or prepare for the ministry, we have something for all ages.

Are you looking for Bible studies for kids? Take a look at the downloadable study guides that come with the stories in  Bible Adventures or explore the videos and worksheets in  Bible Stories for Kids. Or let the kids enjoy fun stories from  Carlos CaterpillarDonkey Ollie, the  Bedbug Bible Gang, and more!

Do you need Bible studies for your preteens and middle schoolers? Try  A Different Kind of Bible Study and learn from the animals of Proverbs 30 and  Bible Study for Preteens that features men and women of the Bible.

If you’re looking for Bible studies for your teens, there are many options to choose from. There are studies that explore the core beliefs of the Christian faith such as  Basics of the Christian Faith and  Christian Discipleship. There are courses such as  Foundations for Teens that are created specifically to help teens address topics such as apologetics, purpose, prayer, identity, courage, characteristics of God, and the reliability of the Bible. Other courses dive deep into apologetics and the debate between Creation and evolution. Still other courses work through books of the Bible, examine cultural issues, and discuss how to live a life with purpose and meaning.
Students interested in pursuing the ministry can find courses such as  So You Want to Be a PastorIntroduction to TheologyStudy of Original Sin, and  Reading Religious Affections.

Whether you’re looking for video-based Bible studies or downloadable homeschool Bible study courses, you’ll find Biblically based teaching and resources to help your entire family learn and grow together.

If you haven’t yet joined SchoolhouseTeachers.com, come give us a try! Your first month is just $5. If you or someone you know would be interested in teaching or writing for us, let us know. You can email me at bhudson@TheOldSchoolhouse.com. Discover the wealth of materials available right at your fingertips at SchoolhouseTeachers.com. 

Bonnie Rose Hudson
Director of SchoolhouseTeachers.com
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