It’s that time of year again—time to prepare for the new school year! Your next few weeks will be full of ordering textbooks, tests, worksheets. Shopping for the necessary school supplies. Mapping out the year’s schedule and determining start and end dates. Perhaps you’ve been talking to your children about the upcoming school year to mentally prepare them. Maybe they’ve started arranging their desks or other school spaces. As we make all these preparations, let’s take some time to focus on the most important way we can prepare—spiritually.
Beginning a new academic year is both exciting and challenging, and we need God’s help! So before we become engrossed in all the organizational details, let’s set aside time with our family to prepare our hearts as well as our minds. If our main goal in homeschooling is to glorify God, there’s no better way to prepare than by committing our school year to Him.
Setting Goals for a New School Year
First, take the opportunity to think through some spiritual goals for the new school year. What are some steps of growth you want to take as a family? Perhaps it’s in your prayer life, your gospel witness, or your interaction with each other. Write down your goals and keep them in a visible place. Spend time in prayer, asking the Lord to help you achieve your spiritual goals. Choose at least one verse you can claim, either on your own or with your spouse, for the coming school year. Here are just a few suggestions: “And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men.” (Col. 3:23); “Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.” (1 Cor. 10:31); “Commit thy works unto the Lord, and thy thoughts shall be established.” (Prov. 16:3); and “Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might…” (Eccl. 9:10).
Second, take the opportunity to share your goals and Bible verses with your children. Encourage them to write down one or two ways they want to grow in their walk with the Lord that can help them be a better student. For example, “I want God to help me have a better attitude toward English and not complain.” Or, “I want to do my school work wholeheartedly for the Lord, not just to get good grades.” Help them choose a verse they can write along with their goals. Then pray together as a family; this will help solidify your commitment to the Lord.
Taking time to prepare your heart will make a tremendous difference as you begin the new homeschool year. When we align our will with God’s, He is able to do “exceeding abundantly all that we ask or think,” (Eph. 3:20) not only in our homeschooling but also in our spiritual growth.
• • • • •
Jennifer is a pastor’s wife and mom of two young girls and loves homeschooling them. During her own twelve years of being homeschooled, Jennifer developed a passion for reading and writing. She earned a bachelor’s degree in creative writing and relishes writing during her free time.