The other day I got the rare opportunity to interact with the education and business communities in my city. Most of my days are spent answering about 1000 questions a day from my children and talking to other mom’s about how to better educate said children since I’m a homeschool mom. It is not often these days that I get the time or am in the right setting to discuss matters of the community.
However, a few nights ago I was at an event where I had the privilege of conversing with a couple of innovative educators and a woman who spends her days in the social work sector. All three of the people I was speaking with are extremely intelligent, excellent at what they do, and full of passion about societal transformation. These individuals aren’t just talking about “giving back to the community” or “making their communities a better place”, they are actually making it happen and always coming up with new and aggressive plans to do so. I was inspired by their passion and vision.
Unfortunately, we disagreed about how to “change the world” given our different worldviews. Like me, these individuals were educated by our public school system thus they were indoctrinated by a socialist agenda. Thankfully, I escaped my education fairly unscathed by the onslaught of liberal thinking and anti-Biblical mantras.
Our conversation began as any other conversation does among strangers who have a vague sense about why you are all together. “So what do you do?” was the general question floating around the table. After listening to everyone discuss their jobs, the question came to me. I paused and said, “I’m a stay-at-home mom. Actually, I homeschool our children.” This, of course, was followed by all of the normal questions and comments, “Oh, that is wonderful,” “What curriculum do you use?”, “Are you in a co-op or group so that your kids get social interaction?”, and “Wow, what made you decide to do that?”, etc, etc, etc.
That last one is always a tricky one when educators ask it because I in no way wish to minimize the sacrifice they make on a daily basis to educate children. I admire their hard work, their heart, and their skill. They have a very difficult task that I am glad that I do not have. It is a great challenge to educate my two children. I cannot imagine a classroom full. Given the delicate nature of the situation, I stated that we simply felt that it was what was best for our children and their unique callings and giftings.
Normally, what follows is “I wish I had the patience to do what you do with my kids.” “I just don’t think I could do that.” But this time the comment that was made was that, although this one couple did not have children yet, they felt it would be best to put their children in public school because they want their children to see the “disparity” in education and in our society as a whole so that they will be encouraged to do something about it. (OH, and before I move on let me mention that everyone at the table agreed that education in our state is not what it should be.)
Hmmmm????? Tilt! So their idea was to bring their child down to the level of the most struggling in our society and school system and then hope they have the skill to do something about it given that they’ll have the compassion to respond. Hmmmm???? What????? OK, well, maybe but that seems like a bit socialist to me. The way to bring everyone up in society is to actually bring those who are at the top, so to speak, down? That mindset simply never makes any sense to me.
I, on the other hand, want to see my children rise to the top of their God-given abilities so that they can do something about the social injustice they see. I want to see them become economically prosperous, go to the best university possible, get the highest degree they can so that they have the resources and skills to lift others “UP”. My children can’t help the poor if they have no money to do so. They can’t develop innovative, socially transformational ideas and businesses if they don’t have the best education I can provide them. And just because I train my children to rise to the top does not mean they will not be compassionate towards those who have not had the same privileges they have had. On the contrary, it is my job to teach them to love others and use their education to make this world a better place.
So how did our conversation end? Well, just like that. I explained my passion to see my children be the best they possibly can so as to transform society and lift others out of their condition. Simple…AND how our founding fathers would have thought!