Training your child in the way they should go…

By Letitia Wong

Conscientious parents are homeschooling in ever-increasing numbers 21st century.   While the reasons for homeschooling vary greatly, the most common reason parents home school their children is for perceived deficiencies in their local public school curriculum.  Lessons that were once a staple part of the classroom in decades past seem to have given way to sociological exercises that many parents, especially Christian parents, find a waste of time if not downright objectionable.   This has opened up a lucrative opportunity for publishers of home school curricula, which have indeed seen their profits increase greatly over the last decade or so.

The result of homeschooling has been nothing less than astonishing.  Despite significant criticism against homeschooling from child psychologists and developmental experts, homeschooled children excel in practically every academic area over and above their public school counterparts.  The effectiveness of homeschooling cannot be questioned for those dedicated to implementing it well.

The great opportunity now lies in eliminating another deficiency, which is found in the average church Sunday school curriculum.  As well as the best curriculum available teaches children (and adults) the basic Biblical narrative and message, lessons are deficient at teaching material reasons why any churchgoer should believe the Bible message.  As Frank Turek explains in his lectures, “we have taught [our children] that they should believe the Bible, but not why they should believe it.”  The result is that adults today, more than previous generations, are Biblically illiterate just as much as we are less academically competent.  But just like homeschooling came to the rescue for many families, homeschooling specifically to understand and defend Christianity may be the missing ingredient to every child’s faith education.

The importance of having a well-rounded education with regards to the Christian faith cannot be overemphasized as our colleges and culture are fraught with sometimes thoughtful, sometimes not, challenges to the Christian worldview.  Children and teens must be prepared to give an answer to the Christian beliefs that they will almost certainly be asked to defend in our culture at large.  The current attrition for church attendance in youth graduating into young adulthood stands at a median rate of 75%.  Studies show that the primary reason for church abandonment and faith abandonment is due to intellectual reasons, which often serves as a justification of personal, underlying moral reasons.  The way to address this disheartening statistic is to tap into a burgeoning wealth of resources available both in print an online.

Of course, the ultimate goal of educating the next generation is not only to hold our ground in the face of answerable skepticism, but to advance the Gospel message in all arenas of life we Christians may find ourselves.  Given our biblical mandate to preach the Gospel to the whole world, we should equip our youth with tools and information and trained minds just as Christ’s disciples possessed to fulfill the high calling of evangelism to our cities and neighborhoods today.

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