September 25, 2023

Education: As regularly and well as in a registered school

Craig Mortimer

Home Educating Father

Moerewa, Northland, New Zealand

We are supposed to teach “as regularly and well as in a registered school.”

* If that’s all we achieve, I’ll consider ourselves failures.

Teach Them That Work is a Blessing

Teach Them That Work is a Blessing

Posted in In line with Scripture

“Then God blessed them, and God said to them, ‘Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.'” – Genesis 1:28

The Word of God tells us that the first thing God did after creating us was to bless us….and look how He blessed us: by giving us work to do. Work is a blessing. Sometimes it seems like a curse, but you know why that is, don’t you? God gave us this blessed task before the Fall (recorded in Genesis 3) and ever since then, because God has cursed the ground (not us) because of our sin, the work has been a lot more difficult. And men have been trying to get out of doing the required work ever since. To work smarter rather than harder, to become more efficient, divide the labour among ourselves, invent labour saving devices is all perfectly legitimate. But to look at work itself as a necessary curse is to be less than thankful to God for the blessing of the work with which He blessed us. Remember, the problem is our sin, not God’s organisation of the world we live in.

Now the implications for us home schoolers is that we must teach our children to enjoy work for the blessing that it was originally intended to be. If our attitude to our 9 to 5 job or our housework or the yardwork or car maintenance is lousy, so will our children’s attitude toward work be lousy. If we threaten our children’s misbehaviour with giving them extra work to do, what does that communicate about how we view work? Our culture is already full of laziness and sloth, even to common farewell slogans such as, “Take it easy,” or “Don’t work too hard,” so we should be endeavouring to mirror God’s standards rather than slipping into the world’s mould.

The Fourth Commandment talks about the Sabbath, but introduces it by another command, “Six days you shall labour and do all your work.” If we or our children (whose lives we have completely taken into our hands by deciding to home school them), if either of us is to fulfill this very first task God assigned (which was repeated to Noah at the end of the Flood, and by our Lord Jesus in a fuller form in Matthew 28:18-20 and repeated by Paul in II Corinthians 5:18-20), then we must put off our old selves with their anti-Christian anti-work attitudes, and put on the new nature of Christ.

Allow your children to see and hear you revelling in a job well done. Allow them to help you, even though it is a pain, and takes so much longer. But you can put your hands on those of your child and guide them through the task. What a marvellous opportunity! Allow them to see your concern that whatever task you do, you are committed to doing it well, to the best of your ability. Remember, before Christ redeemed us, we were UNABLE to work as we ought, that is, to work for the glory of our God and our Saviour/Redeemer. So now that we are saved, praise God, let’s get stuck in and make up for lost time! Is not our God worthy of our best?

Cursed be that old kiwi attitude you sometimes hear in the workplace when the boss isn’t around: “Near enough is good enough.” Not so for us Christians. “And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men.” (Colossians 3:23.) Our children are watching us,as well as God. He will call us to account for our actions, having already poured out His wrath for our lousy work habits and all the rest upon His perfect Son. But our children just might pick up our negative habits and repeat them all over again. Let it not be so! Christ redeemed us parents from the pit that we might spare our children our mistakes and instead give them a roaring head start so they can bring far more honour to Him than we ever even think about. “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven. ” (Matthew 5:16).

From Keystone Magazine
September 1995 , Vol. 1 No. 4
P O Box 9064
Palmerston North
Phone: (06) 357-4399
Fax: (06) 357-4389
email: craig