The Seven Year Prayer (Our Homeschool Story), 1

They need knowledge, but they also need just as desperately to keep the creativity they were born with.

My pal Sharon McKeeman wrote these words on her blog, and when I read them recently I stopped in my tracks. Because this sentence, these words of hers, perfectly summed up what my heart is bursting to sing.

Desperately. They desperately need, I desperately need, our family desperately, needs.

And so, here begins part one of our story. I'm thrilled to share that, the Warrens have decided to bring our babies home, to educate them here (or outside, or at the beach, or in a car, or on a tree...).

The journey to this place is not a short one, or has it been easy. I'll tell you one thing, one big thing, and that is this: God has heard the prayers, seven years worth. He's done it in His timing, He's handed me a gift I thought for many long years, I'd never have the joy to receive. He's done this humongous, great, vast, incredible thing - and I'll not speak of it quietly.

Homeschooling has always been on my heart, let me re-phrase, it's been a huge part OF my heart. Since our Danny entered Kinder in the fall of 2010, I've wanted him to be home. My husband however, did not share that heart tug with me.

This is the topic that drove massive amounts of misunderstanding, hurt, anger, and the like, into our days - all the things that tear down a relationship.

Each year, we sent our kids off to school, both public and private (all GREAT schools, all three of them our eldest has attended). But each year, my heart hurt. It physically, ached. I'm the mom that cries when summer break is over, or holiday weekends. My children are loud, and wild, and crazy - but I genuinely enjoy them home, under my wing.

So every year, as school registration approached, I timidly brought the idea up, only to remember, my husband's heart wasn't aligned with mine.

The funny thing about not getting what you want is, years later, if you're super lucky, you'll see why it was the best thing that you did not get what you wanted, in that time.

I see it now. I eat my words. I smile and nod.

I wasn't in the right place, our kids weren't. God wasn't ready to give me the desire of my heart, because He knew, in His sovereign foresight, that it wasn't the right time.

Year, after year, after year, my heart hurt. I watched friends share their days through social media, those friends that home-educated. I envied that, oh did I. Was that right? Of course not. Still, the heart wants what it wants.

So I prayed some, here and there. Sighed and gave up, yet again, on the dream to school my kids at home.

Husband had concerns, valid concerns. Many of them. Concerns that a lot of people have.

Did I feel hurt? Sure. Did I want to be rebellious and do it anyhow? Yes, often times I did. Do I see now, that again, timing wasn't right? In 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 even? I do, oh I do.

Do I share this to bash my husband? Hardly. Not a bit actually. In fact, he is often wiser than I give him credit for. God was doing a great work in us both, in our marriage, in us individually. I share this to encourage you. As I was encouraged just a few months ago by a dear friend (thanks Tara!!).

Whether you're hoping to get your husband on board with homeschooling, or something else. Hear me when I say, choose grace, joy, even contentment through it.

I urge you: pray without ceasing. Give it to God. Honor your spouse, whether your hearts meet on the issue or not, love them.

Love them, love them, love them.

Be still, and know that whether it be seven weeks or seven years, He hears our prayers. He is good, all the time. Even in the midst of wondering what the bigger picture is, in the midst of the aching.

Tomorrow, I'll share part 2. The Circle Maker and the Miracle.