When Are You Done?
Part of the series Questions For Home Education
Written by Léo Gaumont, published on 2014-09-15.
Alas, all things must come to an end, but the end of one thing usually means the beginning of another.
Our world view is shaped by everything we have experienced, whether true or false. We tend to trust what we have come to believe as true and may even defend ourselves when presented with opposing thoughts. This series is meant to challenge your world view.
Bible Reference: 1 Cor. 9:24
Good question! Never, really! At least not until we step off the planet.
The secular world has trained us to believe that education starts at age five, or once children have entered school and ends once they have "graduated". Learning starts before we are even born and, I believe, will never end, as I presume there will be much to learn on the other side, no matter where we end up!
While we are alive in this world, we are teaching whether we know it or not. Someone is watching us. As parents, our roles change as the children grow up. Our job as parent/teachers has a few stages that tend to overlap. A child must be trained, starting with the ever present need to remind them that they are not the center of the universe. Parents have to be a bit more "authoritarian" at this stage and be the ones making the major decisions since children lack the wisdom to do so.
Teaching starts before puberty, but takes on a much more serious nature once past it. Increased demonstrated levels of responsibility should bring corresponding increased privileges. To extend adult responsibility too early is not good. Neither is retarding them as infants, as schools so often do. Eventually, your role becomes more of a mentor, an older person offering wisdom to a younger person, who should question you, not disrespectfully, but sincerely in their quest for knowledge and understanding.
God desires us all to grow up. Children are no different. Although it is a difficult transition, we must eventually "hand them off" to their heavenly father. This does not disqualify us as parents, but it changes our role, reducing our responsibility as children assume more responsibility for their own lives. This is a challenging time for everyone. The parents are concerned about having done a good job and the children are stepping into the frightening world of unknowns.
If we have directed our children to the real Center Of The Universe who not only created them, but endowed them with all that is needed to be successful in His kingdom, our job is reduced, but His job continues. This flies completely against the common knowledge that only man can truly prepare your child for a career of THEIR choice. Man's way says that after eighteen, your job is done. God tells us that our job is never really done as long as we are aiming for eternal results. It just changes.