One summer when I was young and single, I had to decide how to spend my summer – studying abroad at Oxford or on an adventure trip in the Pacific Northwest. The options were polar opposites but both extremely appealing to me, so much so, I agonized over my decision.
I weighed pros and cons. I sought counsel. I prayed.
I analyzed, conjectured, and worried. I decided, then changed my mind, and changed my mind again (x20). I didn’t know God’s will for me for that summer of my twenty-something life, and what if I missed God’s will for me? What if I made the wrong choice and messed up the rest of the plans He had for me?
I realize how ludicrous I sound – fearing those things in the first place and then writing those fears out for all the internet to read, but that fear was my reality. If I’m honest, I struggle with some of those same questions today – a dozen years later.
In fact, this past summer I had another epic decision, though this choice’s time frame dealt with the school year, not the summer break, and affected my kids far greater than me. This new decision held much weightier repercussions than a summer away and would shift our entire way of life as a family.
Last summer, my husband and I had to decide whether we would continue to homeschool our kids or enroll them in public school.
The decision was agonizing for me.
Would I ruin my kids by sending them to public school?
Would I miss the opportunities to shape their character and their worldview?
Would my kids no longer be best friends with one another or distance themselves from me?
Would I lose my kids to the world?
I wrestled in prayer with God, surrendering before Him a multitude of fears and laying at His feet the disparity between my ideals and our current reality. I grasped for the control that seemed to be slipping through my fingers and admitted my jealousy of others who seemed to have what I was lacking.
It was ugly. Some days it still is. But God has been so faithful.
We have experienced new relationships, new ministry, new vibrancy — though also new challenges. There are days I wonder if we’ll continue along this path or if we’ll return to homeschooling — or choose a path somewhere in between.
I don’t know how God will lead us, but I do know if I am surrendered to Him and seeking after Him, He will lead us.
As we come to the close of another school year, some of you are earnestly seeking God’s direction for your family. You’re wondering if the schooling choice you’ve made is right for your family for this season. Some of you are wondering if homeschooling is even possible and some are questioning whether you’ll ruin your kids forever if you send them to public school. Others are seeking God’s provision because the cost of private school is more than you can afford.
Some of you are agonizing over your options (or seeming lack of options) as I was, and you’re wrestling with what the future holds. Maybe you need someone to remind you –
God already knows the outcome. He’s not surprised by what is happening, and your circumstances haven’t caught Him off guard. He’s not scrambling for a solution or trying to figure out how things will work. He already knows, and He has always cared. That won’t change.
Lean into Him.
Sometimes your choice is less about the decision and far more about surrender and learning to trust Him.
It’s faith. We trust Him even when we can’t see Him. We follow, even though the path is unknown.
Surrender. Listen. Trust.
Obey in faith and pray like crazy.
God is sovereign.
God is good.
He will lead you as you look to Him.
If you’re struggling with any of these decisions, will you send me an e-mail? (Subscribers, just reply to this post. If you’re just visiting, contact me here.) Let me know how I can pray for you and encourage you.
By the way, you might find these resources helpful —