Trained Not to Trust Ourselves
by: JulieBeth Lamb
Posted February 9, 2006
"Ask the experts", "The experts say", "Studies show".
We have been trained not to trust ourselves. We never hear, "Stay at home mothers say", "Midwives show", or "Ask parents who have successfully raised several children to be productive adults". Even in the homeschool community many families are paralyzed with fear of contradicting the experts who have written books and speak at conventions. There are many wonderful experts out there who are doing a good job helping and encouraging people in parenting, homeschooling, healing, childbirth and more. Sadly, though, our society has made people feel helpless in the face of the experts.
It can be frightening to trust in yourself, but you can do it. Begin by getting your priorities in order.
This invades every area of life. Women don't trust their bodies to have babies, mothers don't trust their instincts in caring for sick children, homeschoolers don't trust their understanding of how their children learn and what pace is best, parents don't trust their instincts in child training and discipline, adult children are told to send their old and sick parents/grandparents to nursing homes and hospitals to finish their lives and die. We are told to read books by the experts, take our children to trained personnel, send loved ones off to someone else to take care of them, we don't know anything. Its fingers reach into every area of our lives, even the taxes that are taken to pay for the "experts" and the "official studies".
What can you do about this over-reliance? Well, there are many things that can empower you and those around you. The first thing you need to do is to identify those areas where you are trusting too much in others instead of our own Spirit-led understanding. Once you see clearly your own dependence, you can examine yourself to see if you have an understanding in your heart that you have been rejecting in favor of what others say. If you don't recognize it, you can begin to look and pray to be enlightened as to the right path.
It can be frightening to trust in yourself, but you can do it. Begin by getting your priorities in order. Getting to know your family, spending time together, and interacting are the keys. What pleases your spouse, how can you work best together? How do your children learn best and what types of projects create true, lasting knowledge in them? How often does your baby need to be nursed, or your child need to sleep in your bed? What is the best treatment for illness, or to prevent it? What bed and whose hands should your baby be born into? Where should grandma live out her life and die? You know in your heart the answers to these questions. It won't necessarily be the same for every family, but often it is not what the experts are saying.
Everyone is blessed with a knowledge of those we love through our relationships. We live in an orderly world that has been prepared for our good use. Families are created to nurture birth, childhood, learning, aging and death. Homes are intended to be the center of our daily lives, where we eat, work, play, worship, and learn. Instincts develop through our relationships, allowing us to understand when someone we love is well or sick, happy or sad, successful or discouraged, learning or stagnating, and what to do about it. Flowers of the field, trees and herbs, foods given for our nourishment and pleasure are the abundant provisions for health and healing. All that is required is available to us.
Bring It Home
Bring it home, bring every area of your life home. Slow down, stop looking to the experts, fellowship with your family, trust in your spirit-led knowledge. When you do need input, look to those who have successfully walked the path you are traveling. Get counsel from people who encourage you and help you determine the right way for your family, not tell you what to do because that is what they do. Look to people who have true wisdom. Look for the simple answer first. Work that honors our gifts is a blessing. True education comes in many forms and is valuable for preparing people for the future. Food that is nearest to the way it grows is best for our bodies. Home should be the center of all activity. Prepare with wisdom, the right tools, good counsel, and listen to the Spirit. Learn to trust yourselves and encourage others to do the same.
This article has been published in the Oakdale Homeschool Support Group newsletter, Christian Home Educators of CA Leader's Newsletter, and in the June/July 2005 issue of CHNews, a publication of California Homeschool Network.
Permission to share this article is granted for private use as long as it contains the following information. JulieBeth Lamb along with her husband Rex are the leaders of Oakdale Homeschool Support Group and live in Escalon, California. They have been homeschooling their 5 children for 13 years and have graduated their oldest. Contact JulieBeth Via E-mail or phone (209) 838-6062.