Saturday, November 17, 2007

*The Spiritual Power of a Mother by Michael P. Farris*

A local friend tried to loan me a book at MNO. It was in pristine condition. My books are not in pristine condition. I told her I’d rather not borrow the book. It was evidently in her heart to loan me a book. She came to Bible Study that week with THIS book. It had been dropped in a bathtub by a previous borrower. Even *I* figured I could return it in the same condition. ::snort::

This book began slowly for me. I almost set it aside. Suddenly, in my reading I found myself saying, “YES - EXACTLY” and I was hooked.

Mr. Farris’ stated objective is to encourage homeschool mothers. The book is divided into several short chapters that seem to answer specific questions he has received or experiences he has had. I am guessing that any homeschool Mom would find at least one chapter in this book that encouraged her – and the rest of the chapters? Speed read. ::snort::

I do think for a general book to encourage all mothers I would still recommend books by Sally Clarkson. This one is specifically geared to homeschool subjects and many of the topics would be not apply to a mother who does not homeschool.

A few quotes I loved:
“Today there are so many homeschoolers out there that we have resorted to spiritual one-upmanship.” …. We must squelch the “homier than thou” attitude in our personal lives. p. 38

“The longer I walk with Christ, the tougher I try to be on myself. I do my best to hold myself to very high standards of excellence. However, the longer I walk with Christ, the more lenient I become on people who do things differently from the way I do them. ….As homeschoolers, we need to be tough on ourselves and lenient with our fellow homeschoolers who have other distinctives.” P 39

There’s a great chapter titled “Thanks Mom” .”The Dangerous Myth of the Perfect Homeschool Mom” is a chapter that is a must read! Basically, Mr. Farris says there IS no ONE right way to homeschool and we need to accept that. “The Dangers of Playing with Romance”, “Self-Esteem and Achievement”, “How Can I follow if My Husband Won’t Lead” (deals specifically with a wife who wants to homeschool and a husband who doesn’t but would apply well in all areas), as well as many other chapters are sure to encourage.

He suggests there are only two areas that must be mastered: language arts and math. The rest of the subjects our children should be knowledgeable in. What do you think? He says we’ll never be able to MASTER history, science, PE, home ec etc…..that our children should be exposed to these areas but must master language arts and math (up to Alg 2).

We dropped our HSLDA membership years ago. I would say one of the main reasons was that we took up another Christian homeschool leaders’ offense. This is a BAD idea, ladies. ::snort:: BUT other things bothered us about the direction of HSLDA: we felt like things were sometimes presented in a way to frighten people into keeping legal protection, we felt that they WERE endorsing one way of schooling and that they WERE “homier than thou” in some areas. Reading this book is causing me to rethink several of those reasons for dropping our HSLDA membership. Maybe members of HSLDA can have some of that attitude but, I’ve read Vickie’s book and now Mike’s, and THEY don’t. It’s ALWAYS a bad idea to take up another’s offense….no matter how well-meaning you are. I’m still not sure about the tone of their newsletters and such…but I could join and not read them…..::snort:: We’ll have to talk and pray about this.

Yes, I added this to my fall reading list.

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