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Friday, 25 May 2012

Walking With our children

Yep, I am talking about walkies now. Not just a mentoring walk, but as in the physical, getting up and going out for walks in the countryside. One of the best memories of my childhood, were the walks we had. Whenever we went on holiday we would seek out new walks, and at home, too. We have always loved to do this, but easier now I have older children too, and allterrain buggies! Just now is the perfect weather for walks. The evenings are long, the early mornings are light. Weather is good. You can learn so much about nature, too. We have seen foxes, rabbits, squirrels, kestrels, buzzards. We have picked wild apples, blackberries, sloes, elderberries. Watched animals birthing, animals playing, animals feeding. Seen the trees move through the seasons. It for us, is usually a peaceful time, too. A time to talk, with fewer distractions. A time to meditate on God's handiwork. A time for refreshing, and a time for exercise! These all have their place, and sometimes it is nice to just walk with one child, to look at a sunset, and share in their joys, and ideas. So many benefits, and exciting to explore new places too.
Even if we live in the city, there are still places to explore, parks gardens, or even the coast. It is often surprising how quick even the youngest are able to build up stamina/ Our 4 year old can easily walk 4 miles without getting too tired.

Wednesday, 9 May 2012


Having just read Ann Voskamp's book, 'A thousand gifts', I was inspired to meditate on thankfulness. Here I present some of my reflections. Being thankful is not just a show of good manners, not just mere lip service for the sake of courtesy. Thankfulness, or true thankfulness should come from the heart, and truly is thankful and content. Thankfulness is gratefully accepting what is given, what we receive, even if it isn't what we had hoped for, or expected. The Israelites murmured because they were bored of the manna, they were despising what was given, even though it was more than enough, and it was literally handed to them on a plate. The fact is, their every need was provided for, but they wanted more. Almost as if they were saying to God, ''Is that all we get?'' In the Bible, it says in the last days that people will be unthankful and unholy. Tim 3:2 ''For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,...'' As home educators, one of the most important things we can do, is to teach our children to be thankful. Not just in word, but to be content with what they have, not to be clamouring for more. It certainly does not help a child, when we give into their every whim and want. It does children good to wait, or even not have everything that they may wish for. Of course we need to teach them that material things are not so important, but rather the heart, and helping, and giving to others. Material possessions often compound strife, and it is a good thing if children learn this early on. I myself learned the importance of money, when I had to earn it. I frittered it away, and soon realised it was such a waste. Sadly peer pressure can compound the problem of material possessions, and this is not just limited to children. Peer pressure is now across the ages! Of course some children seem to be naturally generous, and giving, yet others will be so selfish, nothing seems to snap them out of it. Work with the child individually, noting their strengths and weaknesses in this area. Now, perhaps the most important thought of all, if we are not thankful ourselves in our own lives, how can we ever to expect our children to be? Do we constantly complain, and quip, If only we had.....? Are we happy with our lot? Sobre thoughts, and if you have the opportunity to read Ann Voskamps book, I thoroughly recommend it.
Phill 4:11 ''Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.''