Monday, September 8, 2008

:(

"While the public school system continues to degenerate into a drug-stupid, sex-oriented, illiterate morass of misfit, Marxist clones, the homeschool movement is producing intelligent, clear-thinking, confident citizens ready to stand in the middle of cascading corruption and declare their allegiance to God and family."

I found this paragraph on this website, and as a product of the public school system, I completely resent that entire paragraph.

Please don't get me wrong, I married a home-schooler, have many friends who are products of homeschooling and our current opinion is that we will homeschool our children.

However, that said, this kind of ignorant drivel is precisely what gives homeschoolers in general a bad name! (That's right, I know what drivel means, and I only ever took English at a public school!) All of the families I know who homeschool would be furious if someone made a blanket statement about "the homeschool movement." And I know that many are made all the time: homeschoolers are less socially adept than public schoolers, families who homeschool are all uber-conservative, anti-modern, etc, etc." We've all heard them. And while there are truly some people who fulfill these stereotypes, the vast majority does not.

I feel that the same can be said about the public school world. I concede that there are many people in the public school system who fulfill what Pearl is saying to a "t," and the percentage may be higher in that case than in the case of the homeschooling stereotypes, but I find it ignorant and offensive to dismiss public schooling as a whole just because of some of its negative aspects. Many, many wonderful Christian people have dedicated their entire lives to teaching in the public school system, and I know many, many "intelligent, confident, [and] clear-thinking citizens" who graduated from public school. Not to mention godly, pure, and morality intact!!!

As I was reading more of their material, I found these statements:

"Their oldest son just jumped ship. He has a wild tattoo, pierced his ears, and dyed his hair." (1)

"Many parents have had their faith shaken. 'We didn’t watch television or associate with sinners; we taught our children Christian principles; why didn’t it work?'"(2)

"even in the protected vacuum of a Christian home"(3)

Where to even begin!?!??!

Why is the church so judgemental about these external things? "Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart!"

Why didn't they "associate with sinners"? Jesus Himself spent nearly ALL of his time with the "sinners"!!! Isn't one of the most important "Christian principals" go INTO all the world and make disciples"??!!?! If we do not associate with "sinners" how will they ever hear about the love of God? And news flash, I'm a sinner, you're a sinner, there's no way around it, we all fall into this category!!! How self-righteous can we be? And since when is a "Christian home" supposed to be a "protected vacuum"? This seems completely contrary to Christ's command that we are to be "in the world, but not of it"!

I am sorry to rant, but I am so flabbergasted by the hypocrisy!!!

Maybe the deeper reason that teenagers are "jumping ship" is that the Christianity with which they have been presented is so small and narrow for such a big God! They have not been taught that their God is huge and powerful and can handle any of their questions, so when their parents' small faith cannot answer their doubts and their fears, they have nowhere to turn, but to the world that seems to have all the answers!

I have been reading Velvet Elvis by Rob Bell, and he puts it so well:
"I can't tell you the number of people in their late teens or early twenties I know, or those I have been told about, who experience truth outside the boundaries of their religion and abandon the whole thing because they think it's a choice . . . They are experiencing truth in all sorts of new ways, and they need a faith that is big enough to handle it. Their box is getting blown apart, and the faith they were handed doesn't have room for what they are learning."

It scares me, honestly, that the world sees our faith as something that is so small and narrow and constricting. This is the image we have portrayed to them. They did not arrive at this conclusion independently. And there are people all over the world (and all over the web) who consistently prove them RIGHT!!! Which is so WRONG!!! Am I making any sense? People, my God is huge! My God does not wish for us to live in restriction, but in the most wonderful freedom! "I have come that you may have life, and that you may have it to the full!!!" It breaks my heart that someone might miss Him because of the twisted image others are portraying.

That said, I really have to take a long, hard look at myself. What kind of image am I portraying? Do the people I work with know that I love the Lord just because I say so, or because I live like I love Him? Are my friends and family encouraged and blessed by me, or am I needy and whiny and high maintenance because I am depending upon them for fulfillment in areas where I should be depending on Christ?

Not exactly a light beginning to our week, but certainly much needed introspection for myself. Thanks for reading, and have a fabulous Monday.

18 comments:

  1. Wow, Katy Lin! As I read I kept thinking of points that I wanted to add only to find that your next statement covered it. All I can say is "Amen." Thank you so much for posting this.

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  2. I have to completely agree! I was public schooled but will be homeschooling. I have seen good Christian children come out of public school and not "jump ship”. I was not raised in a Christian home or even close to! Where would I be if Phil had been taught to NOT associate with sinners?! Instead "Stick to his kind". I would not know God the way I do now!!! Not to mention having two beautiful little girls. Can you imagine what would happen if all Christians stopped befriending sinners? Some may unfortunately "jump ship" no matter how hard you try....but you have to put trust in GOD that he will ultimately have your child's heart. I could go on and on....Anyways, thanks for the post! It brightens my morning!

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  3. Awesome post! You managed to hit the nail on the head on many topics at once.

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  4. PS...that article scares the snot out of me.

    The whole thing about breeding a new flock of godly whatevers...
    O
    M
    G

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  5. hey katy, i know we have already talked about this, and you know my thoughts :) but just wanted to say Amen! exactly right, and i agree w/Traci's comment as well...great post girl!

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  6. Thanks for this post...I'm a product of the public school system & while it isn't perfect, I LOVED going to public school because there were so many DIFFERENT kinds of people there to be friends with & minister to on a daily basis.

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  7. My goodness that was well said! I attended a Bible study last year at the home of a home schooling mother. Her 16 year old daughter, who had been home schooled in a Christian setting all her life, left home and entered a lesbian relationship, where she still abides months later. It's not the public school or the home school that's the real issue here. The issue is people making wrong choices and not wanting to be responsible for those choices. Kids in public schools have just as much interaction with the morally upright as the immoral. They have to choose between the two, and hopefully they will do it with the help of their parents. blessings, marlene

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  8. What a good post...and what courage it took to post and stand up for what you feel and believe in.

    *hugs*

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  9. Katy, you are absolutely justified in your ranting! I am a homeschooling mom and though I haven't read that article yet, I can say with conviction that we don't homeschool our son just because we want him to stay sealed off from the world. How do we expect ANY kids, regardless of whether they are public schooled or home schooled, to come to know the REAL Jesus unless someone shows them? Romans 10:14 says "But how can they call on him to save them unless they believe in him? And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them?"

    I am so convicted about staying in my comfort zone. You have brought me to tears with this post. Thank you!

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  10. How true! I have a friend who was disappointed that her kids school was letting in 'non-christians' and her kids would have non-christians to associate with... ah - hello! Isn't that the point of being a christian parent: to help your kids learn to live in the real world and make good choices about life/friends and be a good infulence on their non-christian surroundings?...

    Great post Katy Lin!

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  11. Every following, gathering, and group has their extremist that make the group look bad.

    I have been meaning to read some of John Bells work for a while, I’ll add Velvet Elvis book to my library list. I wonder what is that as a teenager were think there is a choice involved, while as an adult we can see that the divine in all encompassing.

    Good luck with your self examination.

    Blessed be

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  12. I was homeschooled and am now homeschooling my children. But, it's tough to be identified with my own kind when there is so much pride and judgement.

    I couldn't imagine not homeschooling. I don't feel that public school is even an option for our family, but I have plenty of friends who do use public schools. And I don't think less of them as people or parents.

    On behalf on homeschoolers everywhere, I apologize for that "we are better than you" attitude. It's not the Lord's way.

    Daja

    www.gombojav.blogspot.com

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  13. Just stopping by to say hello.

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  14. Hi Katy Lin...I hope you are having a good week. Wishing all is well for you. *hugs*

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  15. Hi Katy Lin,

    Just wanted to see what this post was about after reading your TT post.

    I have two children. My daughter went to public school. My son is home schooled. We brought my son home after he kept testing so high and they wanted to "bump" him up two grades because they didn't know what else to do with him. We wanted to balance out the intellect with the common sense factor that was oh so needed! haha

    I am in complete agreement with what you said and what I've seen. In fact, when I began home schooling, I was appalled at the lack of what I saw going on around me. Parents letting the TV set be their children's instructor for the day while they wanted to sit and talk on the phone. At least if their children had been in school, public or otherwise, some instruction would have been going on!

    (Oh I can see the hate mail coming my way)

    Extreme statements like the one you saw is not of the Lord and does not represent home schoolers as a whole. Some may shine, some may not.

    As with all things, we all have to look at what God has called us to do and then do it with all of our hearts, minds and strength. I love that you ended with self examination...good idea always!

    Blessings to you my sister!

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  16. I have not completely read the linked article that started you on this so I cannot say anything about that specifically.

    However, I 100% agree with you with our HUGE God that allowed His Son to step down from heaven and mingle with us sinners. And that he has instructed us to be light and salt in this dark world. How then can we do that if we do not go???

    Reminds me of Casting Crown's If We Are The Body...

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  17. Linked to your blog today--found lots of passion :)

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Thank you!