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Sunday, August 26, 2012

Grace For The Gaps.



Grace For The Gaps. 

I guess I would be considered a veteran…
At least in the Homeschooling arenas.
My oldest is getting ready to turn 30 and my youngest is 16.
When asked to share what I have learned from all these years of schooling…
From raising my kids…
So many things come to mind…
Don’t let homeschool become an idol
Let Christ be the center of your day
Look for teachable moments right in the middle school lessons
Teach kids to be hard workers…as unto the Lord
Give an honest days work at school
You can’t give from the spiritual realm what you don’t have yourself
The list could go on and on…
Go here and you can read more of my homeschooling journey...

Parenting lessons are universal...
No matter the path we travel educating our children...
We all have lessons of letting go...
lessons of trusting God. 

We share out of where we live...
And right now I am watching my son as he turns the page of his story…
Ready to start a new chapter…
One foot out the door…stepping out with confidence and hope…
This “launching” makes a parent shake just a little…
Because I know there are “gaps”…areas not covered in homeschool or lifeschool
 Gaps in his education…gaps in his upbringing…
Gaps that in the past would have crushed me…
Blinding me to all the good…
Gaps that in the past would have condemned me…
Gaps that would have labeled me a failure.

The enemy’s tactics have been the same since the beginning of time…
He tempts us like He tempted Eve…
He tell us… we too can be like God…
Be the savoir to our kids….
Bearing the burden of having all the answers… of holding all truth…
He shouts the lie…”If you don’t get it right…If you don’t fill all the gaps…
If you are not perfect, your kids will not make it.”

The enemy is still right there to whisper the doubts…
Begging me ask the wrong questions…
Did I do enough? Did I…? Did I…? Did I…?
But now, by His love, when I see gaps…He helps me see grace
Today, I realize we will never be able to fill all the gaps…
We as parents were never meant to fill all the gaps…but He can.
So now, the better question is … Is He…?
Is He enough to take my son and continue the work started in a heart…in a home?

This “launching” is the 4th of our 5 children…
With each one, I release more freely…more confidently…
Not because of the job I did…
But because God has proven Himself faithful…
To love my children unto Himself…to be their Abba Father…
To be their Friend…to be their Comforter …
To give all the wisdom they need…
To truly fill the gaps with his love and grace.


Oh, how counting the graces opens my eyes...my heart to...
Feeling joy and sadness walking side by side through this passage...
To trust while one chapter closes...
And waiting for the new story to be written.
I continue to count with words and pictures all His graces given to me.

*the most gifted “commentor” left this acronym in her comment...
just had to add it here...thanks lynn:)
GAPS
God Always Provides and Supplies.


One last basketball game before he leaves.
Always a little competitive.
But love triumphs over all.
My grocery bill will see an decrease without these portion sizes:)
What a gift to have older brothers to give wise words...
challenging and charging him before he leaves.
She entered into his joy...but carried some sadness home with her.
Until the sting of being an only child was soothed by a night with friends.

~3980~4000
~daughter's MIL…better report than first thought
~everyone getting to go to the beach before she starts chemo
~beautiful back to school dinner…surprise bonusJ
~singing the Revelation Song…everyone together
~life on a college campus
~the blessing of this wonderful job for my hubby
~Grace to get much done
~kind customer service lady
~family being together
~sibling bonds
~moving son in…great roommates
~opportunities for growth and stretching ..taking him outside his comfort zone
~daughter’s friends spending the night…
~feeling the winds of change
~wisdom for the changes taking place in our family
~from a family of 7 …now a family of 3
~hopeful expectancy for what the unseen future holds
~being “prisoners of hope”…Katie davis
~”stumbling" upon an Holy Experience…and yes, it has been indeed…
                                     an Holy Experience.
~ reaching 4000…

       Join me at these amazing places...@Ann's,  Playdates, and Soli Deo Gloria,Ann’sGod-bumps. Duane WLWW,Life in BloomWIP


51 comments:

  1. A beautiful post, Ro! Wow! I wish I had known about homeschooling when Sheridan was young. I so admire all you have done here, and your counsel really applies in many areas, not just to homeschoolers. I guess that homeschooling isn't for the faint of heart, and neither is life. Yet,your reminder that God fills our gaps and provides all our needs and overcomes all our weaknesses, offers such hope and promise. GAPS....God Always Provides and Supplies! Great reminder. THank you for a wonderful post.

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    1. Oh lynn...you are amazing...I love that you came up with an acronym so quickly and i love it...I might have to go and insert this into the post...giving credit to you of course. thanks for your kind and helpful words. blessing~

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    2. You are just so sweet, Ro! Have at it! =] May God continue to bless you as you teach your children about God's ways and love!

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  2. Wow. Your words hit home. We're down to a family of five at the end of August from being a family of seven at the beginning of July - one marriage, one college son...So enjoyed your post. Great encouragement!!!! Thank you. :)

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    1. Tammy...it is very strange to be a family of 3...we have two married and that really forever changes family...I am blessed that you found encouragement today. blessings~

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  3. What a beautiful family you have. And this: Let Christ be the center of your day. I'm sitting with that today. How that feeds. Thank you.

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    1. Laura..thanks so much...thanks for dropping in...nice to see you here...have a blessed day and may we both keep Christ right in the center of all we do~

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  4. I so resonate with this post, Ro. I remember having these same fears and questions about "the gap" when my firstborn left for college. I was so worried about it that I "made" him a daily flip calendar, trying desperately to pour more motherly wisdom into his head for every day he was gone! ha! But God reminded me as the days turned into months and years, just what you've said here--that God's grace fills the gaps. Thanks so much for being an encouragement to those of us who've been there and a guide to those who are still on their way. :)

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    1. Beth...I like how you the picture of a calendar...oh so thankful for the grace...where would we be without it. have a blessed day~

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  5. Oh how I love this. Being 3 weeks into retirement from homeschooling, I'm very aware of a lot of gaps through the years. But they're filled with grace! Beautiful thought and truth.

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    1. Lisa...congrats on your retirement...I am 2 years away...my journey is a bit longer than most...but all so good. blessings to you~

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  6. Oh, I love how He's placed you in my life when I need your words most, Ro. So blessed by you. I begin my homeschooling journey next week and I'd be lying if those whispers of doubt aren't keeping me up at night. ::SIGH::
    But then I realized it's okay that I know I can't do it alone. I don't have to...oh the grace to fill in my gaps. i'm going to cling tight to it.

    thank you, friend!

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    1. Oh sweet friend thank you for your kind words...I am so proud of you...you will do a great job teaching your children...your heart will be stretched and poured out for them...if I can ever be of any help to you in anyway in with homeschooling ...please let me know...I am a good cheerleader...I can just encourage you to keep going when you think you can’t...I hit a lot of walls over the years...but God’s grace gets us through each one...great big ((hug )) to you as you start this new adventure...blessings~

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  7. this is a joyous post. smiling as i read. and i always always appreciate all the pictures you post....

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    1. Kendal...so glad you can find smiles here...thanks for stopping by~

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  8. Ro - you are 2 steps ahead of me, putting into words what I'm just formulating in my mind and heart - this says it perfectly: "Is He enough to take my son and continue the work started in a heart…in a home?" - I am giving those gaps to God - oh, you bless my heart!

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    1. Mary Leigh...oh aren’t you so thankful for His Grace...He is so faithful...how easy it is to forget we are stewards of this souls given to you...I am blessed your heart found a home here today...blessings to you~

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  9. Oh, Ro, this is beautiful. My favorite of your posts, perhaps. So much wisdom. freedom. joy. I want to just soak in these words today and fix my eyes on the filler of those gaps. THANK YOU for this gift. Give your "only child" a hug for me- I remember well what it was like to be the last child at home :)

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    1. Alicia...oh you words humble and bless me...thank-you...and I am with you...let’s keep our eyes on the FILLER of those gaps. blessings to you ~

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  10. Ro, this is beautiful. Thank you for stopping by my blog today and blessing me with your presence. You know, I do not have children but as I read your post I kept thinking: this is parenting done right.

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    1. Angie...thanks...only by His Grace ...so thankful for His Grace~blessings~

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  11. This is so beautiful and full of hope that God's grace fills in our gaps...I know I have many, and when I am tempted to despair, God always reminds me that He is bigger..my job is not to be perfect but to rely on Him...praying for you and your family as you adjust to this new season in life...blessings, Ro :)

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    1. Dolly...oh yes...so thankful we don’t have to be perfect...His grace and blood covers us in His love and Mercy...may you rest in His everlasting, unconditional love for you...blessings to you my friend~

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  12. A wonderful post, wonderful family, wonderful pics. But you know what I honed in on? I hope this doesn't make me sound shallow after reading such a deep, meaningful post which really spoke to me by the way! But. . .back to the maybe shallow part of me. . .I loved your curtains! :) I'm not good at curtains and I zeroed in on those right away. Ok. . .I'm going to pray now for contentment of my curtainless windows ;)

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    1. Kristin...you made me smile...I love your heart...Oh I don’t have a decorating bone in my body...before we bought this house...the people had a interior decorator friend who came in and did the colors and curtains downstairs...I think is is one of the reasons I feel in love with the house. I can take a picture of my room upstairs...8yrs later...curtainless...
      thanks for making me smile....blessings to you~

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  13. I like you. I really do. Every time I visit. I like you more. Your sweet family pics were perfect.

    Oh, and homeschooling. I go back and forth between I want to, I want to and run, run! Enjoyed reading about your lessons.

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    1. Amy...you are so sweet...i like you too:) just keep seeking the Lord what is best for your family...He will lead you...to be honest...I would never tell anyone to homeschool...it is so very hard at times...what held me here was knowing He called me to do it. and to be honest I have to keep an open heart if He ever wants to change the course we are on.
      thanks for stopping by...so glad you did:)

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    1. ummm...if my daughter is reading this she would say no...but she needs to be...she is very kind to let me hone in on her FB...I love seeing all the pictures of my grandlove...it is almost like seeing her in real time:)...if I ever go to login and and she changes her password ..i might have to do something different.

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  15. My MIL gave me this exact advice after having homeschooled her 3 kids. God who fills in the gaps.

    I have held it and it continues to hold me.

    A beautiful post, Ro.

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    1. Kelli...what a gift t have a MIL to be an encourager to you...thanks for being here...blessings~

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  16. dearest ro,

    what cleansing breaths this is to my soul. these are the truths that i know in my head, but that my heart needs to be reminded of so often. "We as parents were never meant to fill all the gaps…but He can." oh, how grateful i am for that because most days i feel like there are so, so many.

    and to let you know how relevant this post was for me, would you believe me if i told you that i'm recovering from a health crisis & following a food plan that's called GAPS? yep, it's incredibly rigorous (& feels so limiting, even though the Lord is using it to offer MUCH healing), & so this puts such a wonderful spin on it. it helps me to see the Lord in my meal-to-meal GAPS. b/c afterall, He is our portion, isn't He? so now, when i think about my GAPS food plan, i don't want to think about the short-sightedness of the limitations, i want to think about the reality that God Always Provides and Supplies.

    blessings to you & yours, my friend,
    tanya

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    1. Tanya...you bless me with your words and heart...so very glad you came by...I love how God can speak to where we are in so many ways...I too went through a health crisis...God was faithful to meet me and lead me through this time of testing...I see He is leading you too on your path...grace and peace as the GAPS are filled with His love and grace...again...I am blessed you came by...have a wonderful day in His grace~

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  17. So glad I found this post! As a momma trying out home school this year it was so nice to read the wisdom you penned. As a mom with young children, the part about the gaps and the lies of the enemy that we have to do and be all... really spoke to me. Thank you!!
    Amanda @ www.the-cadence.com

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    1. Amanda...oh blessings to you as you homeschool this year...I will tell you this...you will find the strength to do this on your knees...nothing stretches and reveals our hearts...our kids hearts as being together 24/7 ...teaching and learning together...but I can say...it is worth all the blood , sweat and tears. so glad you stopped by...blessings~

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  18. As a soon-to-be adoptive mother, these words were so encouraging. Thank you!

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    1. Liz...congrats on your new little one...blessings to you as you start a beautiful new chapter in your life~

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  19. Oh, wow ... Ro! God is really speaking the same message to us this week. Thank you for sharing about GAPS. This blessed me greatly.

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    1. Jennifer...I know...don’t you just love how He does this...He is so kind and gracious to us...isn’t He? blessings to you my friend.

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  20. Oh, this Mama's heart needs to remind and remind herself of these truths: we are not meant to fill their gaps; only God can do so.

    These days, I'm praying over many gaps while consciously avoiding the tempting potholes of regret, shame, and guilt (where I've skinned some knees in the past). He is able and willing to fill their (and my) gaps! To Him be the glory!

    Thanks again for the reminder!

    Deb Weaver
    thewordweaver.com

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    1. Deb...oh I know those potholes myself...and the enemy always wants us to focus on the the pothole...instead of the ONE who reaches down...pulls us out and pours His grace over the wounds. So glad you stopped by....blessings~

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  21. Love this post! And the acronym is perfect! Congrats on 4000!

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    1. I think you might have read this before...minus the acronym...thanks for stopping in...blessings~

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  22. This is a beautiful reflection. I love the idea of trusting him to fill in the gaps with our children. I also like your line about not making homeschool an idol--a very good point. Coming to you from New Life Steward, but I am a part of Ann Voskamp's link up, too.

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    1. Mandy...so glad you stopped in today...blessings to you~

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  23. I love this Ells! I am finally getting back into our routine so I'm glad to be catching up with you. I always appreciate your wisdom - thanks for sharing.

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    1. Hi there kelli...nice to see you...yes...settling in here as well...thanks for stopping by...blessings~

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  24. Ro, you and me girl! I homeschooled all my children since ’85 and KNOW there are gaps that only God can fill. I have one left in the nest, a senior – I’m crying as I write.
    You have such a beautiful family, and these children are so blessed to have a mom so precious, so conscientious, so devoted to excellence, purity, love.

    What are your impossible dreams?
    http://debrasblogpureandsimple.blogspot.com/2012/08/house-of-dreams_28.html

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    1. Debra...wow...another dinosaur :) you must have an age gap like me...just one left in the nest too...thank you for your kind remarks and so glad you came by...and I am looking forward to jumping over to your place. blessings~

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  25. Thank you for this post! We have the first of our four leaving for Uni on Sunday(gulp)...I love the picture of Him, filling the Gaps! Stopping in from Unwrapping... Blessings on your day!

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  26. I wrote a prayer about being able to let go of my son when the time come on Friday. I'm so thankful to have a faithful God that fills in where we fall short.
    Thanks for sharing with WIP!

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