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Not Finishing the School Year

Celebrating

Be thankful in all circumstances

So, we are not going to be able to finish this school year properly. In fact, we are significantly behind, and that really bothers me.

Some of it was unavoidable:  we had a bumper garden harvest and illness.  However, the girls could have been farther along if I had been a bit more organized.  Or maybe not.

In any case, we are now faced with the reality that some things need to change.  However, many things need to stay the same.  You may be in the same situation as we are, so I’ll share my thoughts.

We must diligently follow our prayerfully laid-out plans while being flexible and open to what God brings into our lives.

We need to continue to work hard during our school time.

I must pick out the most important things to focus on in our schoolwork:  Bible.  Reading and literature.  Writing.  Math.  Science.  History.  French.  Dutch.  Art. Music.  Logical thinking. Physical activity. It sounds like a lot, but for each girl I need to focus on and drop different things.

We must accept the fact that we will not finish this school year. That is sad.  However, we should not become discouraged but resolve to do our best and just leave the rest.  Or, as Tricia Goyer says optimistically, “Just do what you can.”   

I must learn to motivate and encourage the girls more effectively.

In our mad rush to keep up we must stop putting academics first and get back to outreach and volunteering and service.  After all, the preparation for life is not as important as life itself, and there are people who need us.  We have forgotten that recently.  It’s counter-intuitive, just like tithing, but God blesses when we obey.

This is March break week.  Unfortunately, my children took an unplanned March break when I was away celebrating my parents’ anniversary, and we cannot take another one.  But we will plan a few special things:  cheer up some old friends, perhaps go to a museum, and probably do a bit of shopping.

We already laugh a lot, but we must learn to celebrate more, connect better, and drown our sorrows and temptations in gratitude.   Yes, drown them in gratitude.  That’s what I learned from One Thousand Gifts last year: being thankful in all circumstances is God’s solution to so many difficulties, even an impossible-to-complete school year. (Remember, God says the same thing in 1 Thessalonians 5:17 and Philippians 4:6,7.)

And, finally, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not rely on your own insight.  In all your ways acknowledge him and he will make straight your paths.”  (Proverbs 3)

None of this will solve the problem of not finishing up our school year.  But I hope it will help us proceed from here and keep us from discouragement.

How is your school year going?  Do you need to make adjustments to your plans, priorities, or attitude?

Thanks to Jessica for her godly optimism and to Wendy for pointing out what was lurking at the edge of my awareness.

This post is linked to Finishing Strong and Trivium Tuesdays.

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7 Comments

  1. We had the move, and now my parents have generously offered to take the kids to Florida for a week. We are mostly on track. We may take a shorter summer break. It’s OK. And, I know you will be too. I hope!

    1. Annie Kate says:

      Oh, how wonderful for everyone! That’s a super thing for your parents to do!

      And, yes, I think we will be OK. This week the girls have been super-diligent and accomplished so much that we’ve even been able to go to the wave pool nearby! It was so much fun for all of us! I even went down the two-storey water slide four times. 🙂

  2. Amy says:

    Bless you, Annie Kate! You are a wonderful homeschooling mom and a great encouragement to the rest of us! I don’t know Canadian laws, but can you gently finish some things up in the summer? I think a lot of times we know the right things to say, but we don’t know how to take our own advice (that’s me anyways). You wrote so many truths in this post about what is most important about an education. Enjoy your kids this week as you teach and fit in some fun as well =)

  3. JoAnn says:

    Our year is going well. We’ll finish what the Lord has for us to finish, is how I look at it. 🙂 As long as they are learning and growing we are happy.

  4. Annie Kate says:

    Thank you, Amy! We will be working in the summer somewhat, but we will not be able to finish everything since we have an out of province family reunion to attend. So we’ll just have to leave it at that and be grateful for all the things God gives us.

    I love your outlook, JoAnn: “We’ll finish what the Lord has for us to finish.” I hope that by being diligent, flexible, and prayerful, we’re heading toward that goal.

  5. Tricia says:

    Thank you so much for this – I needed it today! Next week I plan a spring break even though we are behind here and there and ahead in other places. Simply because we need it. And I love this you say (well all of it) “In our mad rush to keep up we must stop putting academics first and get back to outreach and volunteering and service. After all, the preparation for life is not as important as life itself, and there are people who need us. We have forgotten that recently. It’s counter-intuitive, just like tithing, but God blesses when we obey.”

  6. Cindy says:

    Great post, Annie Kate. It helped me take a deep breath today. 🙂

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