This year marks my 10th year homeschooling and I have made it a standard practice during the summer before each school year to pick out a verse/theme for each school year to focus on.
We’ve had the year of diligence - where I really needed them working on school work without me asking to get it done. I had a baby that year and needed them to work hard without my supervision. The verse we used that year was - “Go to the ant, you sluggard! Consider her ways and be wise, Which, having no captain, Overseer or ruler, Provides her supplies in the summer, And gathers her food in the harvest.” Proverbs 6:6-8 . If you were in my home that year you would have heard me often remind my children to “Be the Ant!” when I saw them get off course for the school day.
There was the year of mouth correction. Bad habits of words like shut up, what the heck, and stupid had crept into our vocabulary, along with just yucky, unkind speech between siblings. Our verse for that year was “Pleasant words are like a honeycomb, Sweetness to the soul and health to the bones.” Proverbs 16:24. That year you would have heard me say “Sticky Sticky Sticky” as a simple correction when selfish speech and unkind words started to bubble up.
There was the year of rest. We had come out of a really hard, traumatic season in our family that particular year and we just needed to rest, be together, and look for the goodness of God. That year our verse was “Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” Matthew 11:29-30 We loved the part of this verse that says “learn from me” so in that year we claimed Jesus as the teacher of our homeschool year and we looked for and watched His hand all over the year as we simplified life, our school schedule and our social life. We let the Lord run this year and we saw Him move in powerful ways. We also had thankful journals that year where we all reflected on the goodness of the Lord on a daily basis as we saw His hand around us.
This year our verse of the year is “Blessed is the man Who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, Nor stands in the path of sinners, Nor sits in the seat of the scornful; But his delight is in the law of the LORD, And in His law he meditates day and night. He shall be like a tree Planted by the rivers of water, That brings forth its fruit in its season, Whose leaf also shall not wither; And whatever he does shall prosper.”Psalms 1:1-3 We will be doing a Foundations class for Bible this year and we are really focusing on our children knowing the truth of scripture rather than hearing the world. Truth has become relative even in the church and I want to know that this year my kids foundation is solid in the word of God. I’m sure this year I’ll say “fruit or wither” often as we study history and biographies of those from the past we will see who produced fruit or withered. I purchased some botanical tree art prints (I’m a sucker for botanical prints) that I plan on adding our verse to and sticking up around the house to remind us daily to be a strong tree for the Lord.
Do you pick a theme or verse for each year? I’d love to hear what you have picked for this year! If you haven’t ever picked a theme or verse here are a couple suggestions to get you started.
1. Pray and ask the Lord to make obvious a word, verse or theme. If you watch He will bring a verse or word up many times in random places but you must be listening for Him to speak.
2. Discuss with your husband. These better halves of ours often have keen insight that we don’t see because we are in the thick of day in day out schooling and don’t have the overhead perspective they have.
3. Talk with your kids. I’ve had a couple themes come from ideas the kids have mentioned wanting to grow in.
4. Here are a few words to get you thinking: patience, wisdom, diligence, forgiveness, courage, peacemakers, encouragement, trust, and reputation. Make your own list of words and see which ones you are drawn to.
Cant wait to hear what verses you select for this upcoming school year!