I can think of no more important goal in our homeschooling years than to teach our students how to find the will of God. Knowledge of God is the beginning of wisdom. The number one priority in all homeschooling programs should be the reverent study of God's will. We ought to teach our homeschooling children to seek to become skilled in knowing His will. The more we know Him the better shall we be able to read intelligently His will.
It may be said that God has two wills for each of us, or, better, there are two parts to His will. There is His will of grace, and His will of government. His will of grace is plainly revealed in His Word. It is that we shall be saved, and made holy, and pure, and by and by glorified in his own presence. His will of government is His particular plan for my life. God has every life planned. The highest possible ambition for a life is to reach God's plan. He reveals that to us bit by bit as we need to know. If the life is to be one of special service He will make that plain, what service, and where, and when. Then each next step He will make plain.
Teaching homeschoolers to discern His will here hinges upon three things, simple enough but essential.
1. I must keep in touch with Him so He has an open ear to talk into.
2. I must delight to do His will, because it is His.
3. The third thing needs special emphasis. Many who are right on the first two stumble here, and sometimes measure their length on the ground. His Word must be allowed to discipline my judgment as to Himself and His will. Many of us stumble on number one and on number two. And very many willing earnest men sprawl badly when it comes to number three. The bother with these is the lack of a disciplined judgment about God and His will. If we would prayerfully absorb the Book, there would come a better poised judgment. We need to get a broad sweep of God's thought, to breathe Him in as He reveals Himself in this Book. The meek man—that is the man willing to yield his will to a higher will—will He guide in his judgment, that is, in his mental processes.
This is John's standpoint in that famous passage in his first epistle. "And this is the boldness that we have towards Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us: and if we know that He hears us whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him." These words dovetail perfectly into those already quoted from Paul in Romans 8. The whole supposition here is that we have learned His will about the particular matter in hand. Having gotten that footing, we can model for our homeschoolers how to go to prayer with great boldness. For if He wants a thing and I want it and we join—that combination cannot be broken.
Mimi Rothschild is the co-founder of Learning By Grace, an international Christian ministry that offers Online HomeSchooling Programs for PreK-12.
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