Monday, October 3, 2011

But God Directs His Steps (& Alex's Essay)

We just finished reading a biography on President Lincoln tonight.  My boys and I love to read about the life stories of others...especially those who stood for righteousness and changed the world, even when it was not popular to do so!

I will never stop encouraging parents to read, read, read good long books to their children.  I can't emphasize enough how this has shaped the character of my sons.  What started as a tactic to get them to get in bed and stay put so I could have some p&q faster, has turned into one the greatest blessings of our household.  God tricked me (wink) and what a plethora of wonder has come forth!

Man makes his plans, but God directs his steps!  

I keep thinking of this verse lately.  I am amazed at how God has led me in the choices for curriculum, books, movies, software, and trips for my family.  Somehow what felt like my crazy thinking morphed into a beautiful tapestry of learning and living!  All glory to God!

We have studied history chronologically since Garrison started first grade eight years ago!  We have cycled through twice now, with this year being modern history.  The first time we covered modern history, I was careful to edit details so they could handle the atrocities.  Garrison is still very sensitive to people being mistreated.  He cannot read or see anything about the crucifixion without crying (which I love about him).  He has always been an advocate of fair treatment for all...which I'm certain is related to his calling somehow.

So here we are beginning to jump into the very hard topics of slavery, civil war, atomic bombs, concentration camps, genocide, and terrorist attacks.  How I wish my children needed to know nothing of any of these horrific things!

As we have been reading about African-American slavery, I stop and say, what do you think of that?  Garrison replies with teary eyes, "It's sick Mom!  It's disgusting!  It makes me so mad!"   Alex replies, "It's dumb! People are all the same."  Trey (always my boy who goes straight to bodily functions!), "Yeah, I mean, if you cut us open, we're all the same inside!  Who cares how we look!"


Praise God that's what they are thinking!  Praise God that my children are not ignorant!  Praise God that my sons think rainbows are beautiful and appreciate all of God's colors and see them as individually majestic, yet not more amazing than any other!  Praise God for bringing friends into our lives from every nation, tongue, and tribe!

And...I praise God for the young women in their lives...their spiritual sisters He sent them...who have taught them that human slavery is sadly still going on and, in fact, more prevalent in the world today!  They will not be men who turn a blind eye to those in captivity in any form, for they know that God has anointed them to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and to release the oppressed!  

When they hear or read about slavery, they get mad because they have been taught what is right and just, and it is appalling to them to think of any human being made in God's image being mistreated!

If that is all I ever taught them in this thing called "home school," that would be more than successful to me.

I will leave you with Alex's essay on Abraham Lincoln...his hero of a few years now.  Why?  I have no idea really!  He just sorta became intrigued with him and reads about him and studies him.  It wouldn't surprise me if that had a little something to do with Alex's calling either (smile).  You never know.  Man makes his plans, but God directs his steps!

Abraham Lincoln

     Abraham Lincoln was an amazing man.  His child hood was difficult.  Although he went through hard times he did not let that stop him.  He went on to do great things.  Abraham Lincoln was a man of God.

     When he was young Abraham loved to go exploring with his freind Austin.  Things changed when his mother died.  His family was very sad.  When he was 13, his father remarried.  Then he got a step brother and a step sister.  He found ways to overcome all that.
     Abe found courage to get through his trials.  He loved to learn and read as much as possible.  He was an honest young man, and he was brave.  He wasn't afraid to take risks which helped him accompish great things.

     Abraham succeded at amazing duties.  He became the 16th president of the United States of America.  He disliked slavery, and he stood up for what he believed during the American Civil War.  After the war was over, he was assassnated for his beliefs.

     President Lincoln will always be remimbred as one of the United States greatest leaders.  He learned from diffcult experences.  He used them to develop his caracter.  During one of the nations hardest times he found the strength to lead with honor.  He will always be respected for his leagacy.

Written by Alexander Stephen
September 2011
Grade 5


Jill said...

Love this! Thanks for sharing!

Nikki Brown said...

That was Great... You can tell he learned a lot.