It’s pretty to safe to say that I’ve heard it all. “How can you be around your children all day? Are you stuck at home all the time? Do you ever get stressed out?” The questions are valid, indeed – especially the last one (LOL)!
The truth of the matter is, without shalom in the home, homeschooling can be stressful and overwhelming. The question now becomes, “How do I create shalom in my home(school) so that it’s pleasant to be around my children all day… okay if we’re “stuck” at home… and have joy in the midst of feeling stressed and/or burned out?”
The Nature of Shalom
You may not know this, but my family and I love the Hebrew language. It’s our second language of choice and we have goals to one day speak it fluently. You’re probably familiar with its Western definition – “peace”, or perhaps the Jewish greeting “hi (or bye)”.
The true nature (and meaning) of this is so much deeper and holds so much wisdom in how we can create shalom in our home(schools).
Shalom comes from the root word “shalam,” which in a nutshell means – “to be safe in mind, body, or estate.” It speaks of completeness, fullness, or a type of wholeness that can be seen, heard, and felt.
Looking at shalom from a biblical perspective takes it even deeper! This viewpoint refers to an inward sense of completeness or wholeness. Although shalom can describe the absence of war, a majority of biblical references refer to an inner completeness and tranquility.
With this in mind, let’s look at three ways to have shalom in the home(school).
Seek Inner Peace through God’s Countenance & Protection
“Speak to Aharon and his sons saying, ‘This is how you bless the children of Israel. Say to them: YHVH bless you and guard you; YHVH make His face shine upon you, and show favor to you; YHVH lift up His face upon, and give you peace.” – Numbers 6:23-26
Many are familiar with the Aaronic blessing. A bit of back story, God was telling Aaron to bless Israel with peace while they were getting ready to go conquer the Promised Land. If the Western definition of peace (without war or conflict) were true in the case, it wouldn’t make much sense.
Plug in the Hebraic and biblical definition of inner peace and completeness, now it makes sense. Israel needed this inner peace combined with God’s countenance and protection; hence, why I believe this is a vital key in having shalom in the home(school).
Choosing to live a life different from the world will always bring a certain level of war and strife. However, when we declare, decree, and walk in the countenance and protection of the Most High God, we and our family’s become better for it.
This same principle should be applied within the home where an entirely different kind of war and strife can occur. Whether it’s martial issues, sibling rivalry, or some other kind of discord – possessing an inner peace can radiate and touch the lives of others within your home.
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Pray for Restoration
“Pray for the peace of Yerushalayim, let those who love You be at rest. Peace be within your walls, rest in your citadels. For the sake of my brothers and companions, I say, ‘Peace be within you.'” – Psalms 122:6-8
While today’s prayers for Jerusalem are peace-from-war based (and rightfully so), this particular passage of prayer from King David was more from the perspective of Jerusalem fulfilling its destiny.
Think for a moment about God’s destiny for families. Looking at the big picture, I believe it is the parent’s responsibility to prepare children for a God-worthy life lived here on earth, but also preparation for eternal life with the Father.
Surely as the sky is blue, the journey to accomplishing those two things can come with ups and downs that will need some restoring. When praying for restoration (and in some cases, revival for certain family members), we can keep in mind that at the foundation is inner peace and completeness.
Now plug in your family name in replacement of Jerusalem and read/say those verses again. This is a prayer definitely worth adding to your chats with God!
Be a Peacemaker
“Blessed are the peacemakers, because they shall be called sons of Elohim.” – Matthew 5:9
This is another verse that can easily lose its true meaning due to words having different meanings depending on where you’re from. Westernized thinking will see the word peacemaker and instantly think politicians and negotiators; however, that was not the Messiah’s thought process.
He is actually referring to those who carry an inward sense of the fullness and safety that is only available through son-ship with the Most High God. This brings us back full circle with the first suggestion of seeking inner peace through God’s countenance and protection.
There comes a point where a person can be so filled with shalom that it spills out from them and pours onto others. This is when people say things like, “So-and-so sure is a blessing to be around. She has such a peace about her…” This can and should be happening within the walls of our homes. Spouses and children alike should see one another as peaceable beings who are safe and trustworthy.
Applying This to Your Homeschool
You probably noticed that I didn’t talk much about the actual homeschool. There’s a good reason for this. In my most honest and humble opinion, I believe that having our homes in order should be the first order of business.
When our homes are thriving, it seems that all else falls into place. I’ve also always been an advocate of helping people understand that your family doesn’t have to change because you homeschool, but allow your family to change how you homeschool.
Each of the aforementioned suggestions can be applied in every area of life – your workplace, with extended family, friendships, etc. The main principle to see shalom from its true meaning and allowing that to change you from the inside out.
May I pray for you?
If this blog post resonated with you I’d love to hear your thoughts! Drop a comment below and let me know what you’re thinking. I’d also like to pray for you, your family, and your homeschool journey. Fill out the form below with your prayer requests! I’m also available to discuss this principle with you in more detail and help you create shalom in your home(school)!