I have really struggled with whether or not to write this. I know that many people have very strong opinions about this subject and I am only sharing how I stand on things. That being said, I am one of many moms doing away with bible class. Before you grab your soap box and climb up on that bad boy I hope that you will hear me out. I think that with a few of the points I hope to make below you will understand why I think this is so true.
The first thing I want to point out is that I am a woman of faith. I love God and I love Jesus more than anything. Were it not for my faith I would probably be dead. I do take my children to church and I do teach them based on God’s perspective on things. However, I do not have a time each day in my homeschool lessons for bible. I don’t use the homeschool classroom as a time to get them in deep bible studies. If you read below you may understand why.
I want them to own their faith. – My biggest fear with making their bible time a part of our daily requirements is it then becomes my job to make sure they pursue their faith. It’s no longer pursuing God because they want to, it’s pursuing God because I want them to. I have found that my children have implemented their own bible times each day without me needing to make it mandatory. They enjoy it because it is a choice they make because they love God.
I want them to love their bible time. – By sticking to a specific bible curriculum with each class day I take away their freedom to explore the bible and get to know God better on their terms. I don’t want to define their faith for them. I want to give them a faith that will last. For us, this means independent bible time.
S.O.A.P. Time – Instead of having a bible class each day I use a method learned from a camp. It’s called S.O.A.P. It means scripture, observation, application, prayer. With this method R is able to independently open her bible when she is ready pick a scripture, write down her observations of what is means, write out how it should apply to her life, and pray over prayer requests. This format has helped her to grow closer to God. While I have occasionally read some of the S.O.A.P.’s she has done I am not overseeing them. It is her faith. She does these nightly with no prompting from me.
Faith should be lived. – I believe very strongly that my children will learn more about God from the way that their parents live it out than by sitting down for bible time every day in class. If I am teaching them about the faith to move mountains but I lose faith every time there is a struggle, what do they learn? If I am teaching them about the grace of God but I can’t be forgiving of a person who hurt me, what do they learn?
Weave truth in to everything. – While I don’t have a specific bible time during our homeschool I do weave our faith through many of the lessons we learn. 2 of our curriculum options are faith based. My children are learning the truths of God while studying other subjects. Instead of having a set bible time, we weave God throughout our entire day.
I am not a Sunday School teacher. – So many parents tell me that I should have Sunday school styled lessons every day with my children. While that is great, I would rather not. I think that Sunday school is a beautiful tool to grow a child’s faith. However, that is not the only way they will grow. I went to Sunday school my entire life and never met Jesus there. It wasn’t until I pursued Him that I truly found him.
Leave your home and find God there. – My children have learned more about who God is by watching me work with teenage mothers or helping to feed the homeless and hungry then they ever did in a lesson. It’s one thing to hear Jesus fed the 5000. It’s another to get out and feed people who are hungry and understand what it meant that Jesus fed them. It’s one thing to read about a missionary. It’s another thing to sit down with a missionary family and find out why it matters to them.
I think this is a personal decision. I am not coming down on you at all if you are a fan of having a bible curriculum for your homeschool. I simply think that for our family it just won’t work.
How do you incorporate your faith into your homeschool?