Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Still Growing :)

I am sitting at a coffee shop with adults!!!

Well, sure...that isn't a huge deal for many of you out there, but for me this is new and so fun and relaxing!

It is Tuesday and on Tuesdays I now get some time to just be. (Do I hear all the mommas applauding?)

This year marked our tenth year of homeschooling.  That means Garrison is 15 now and in the 10th grade.  He is taking some classes at a local cottage school one day per week. From 9 until 12, he has integrated world history and geography, worldview, music, art, literature, and composition.  He breaks for lunch at noon and has a study hall until his chemistry class from 2-3:30.

Meanwhile, Alex and Trey hang out all day with my parents.  My mom is a great teacher and loves spending time with her grandsons, so I asked if she would teach them on Tuesdays.  She was more than happy about this, which frees me up to get other things done and have some chill time.  The boys have their math, vocab, and language arts work to do on their own, and with my mom, they are studying Shakespeare stories, poetry, geography, history of the Middle Ages, and anything else Didi feels like tackling.  Last week they even had some fishing and boating lessons with Poppa!

After what was probably our bumpiest first week of school ever, we have now settled into a routine.  Garrison is getting used to a much heftier workload that will have him well prepared for college.  Time management was his biggest obstacle over the last two years, and the lessons he is learning now will be invaluable for the rest of his life.  Challenging and interesting, the material his classes are covering is proving to be just what he was missing.  He is able to participate in peer discussions and present papers and opinions, while getting feedback from someone other than mom.

I am still (and hope I always will be) amazed at how God directs our steps.  There were some things the Lord laid on my heart going into the homeschool convention last spring, and through a series of events, several things intertwined.  One day later in Garrison's future I will be able to share these things and show the glory of God in how He directed us for Garrison's specific path.  I will say that I have had to fight through much anxiety and concern over some of these steps and trust God with the process, but now I am seeing the "why."

God has stretched me through my sons so many times over as they have grown.  I am so thankful that He always knows what is best even when we do not.  I know one day I will look back and see all the puzzle pieces fit together into a beautiful picture.  Maybe then I can share our story with others and comfort them in the journey because sometimes it sure is hard to trust what you cannot see.

Besides all these classes Garrison takes at his cottage school, he also has geometry and Spanish at home, while continuing in mixed martial arts classes, playing bass guitar at church, and learning how to drive.  He is doing very well, but he is definitely one tired teen!

I will end this post with Garrison's first paper of this year.  Ignore the underlining and numbers; those are just markings for his teacher.

Answers to Existence
[1]Every non-Christian man possesses unique presumptions about the existence of himself and the universe. [3]Unfortunately, because he is terribly erratic, man can never arrive at a legitimate understanding of whether or not his beliefs fit reality. [4]Wavering back and forth between his ideas and the actuality of the world, man becomes tired. [1]Therefore, he finds an in-between point of balance where he can rest. [2]On this point he can protect and conserve his beliefs from blows by the truth of the world.  [1]Despite this sense of balance, a non-Christian still holds many questions which he desperately needs answered.  [3]Sadly, man’s flawed and incomplete beliefs cannot be used to produce results that fully explain the reality of existence.

[1]Although man has no answers to his questions on existence, there is one source which provides perfect and satisfying solutions to his problems. [1]This source is the God of Christianity, and He has provided clear revelation to us in His book, the Bible. [3]Surprisingly, man usually denies these answers, because he would rather rule himself than be ruled by an all-powerful God. [1]Nevertheless, the person is not un-savable. [2]By carefully nudging him toward the sensible deduction for his presumptions, a Christian can help him notice that his beliefs stand completely against the actuality of the world, and that he has a huge need for God in his life.  [1]However, Christians must ensure that their true motive for using this technique is to rescue a person from enduring and suffering through eternity in hell, because if the person still rejects God, he will be left with more unanswered questions about reality than he held initially. 

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