Here's my trajectory, laid out so I can remember because I already find myself forgetting how I came to think of it as remotely possible in the first place.
I read Anthony Esolen's Ten Ways to Destroy the Imagination of Your Child, which I believe I found by bopping around the "Customers Also Bought" links on Amazon. That raised some good points about education and started me thinking about what I hope for my boys to learn.
Then I read a whole bunch of stuff on teh webz and from the lie-barry. Some useful, some fascinating in a wow that's differnt kind of way.
Somewhere in there, more toward the second category if I'm honest, I read the Duggar's book. Yes, those Duggars. While I don't agree with the quiverfull movement (i.e. having a jillion kids because you believe God commands it) as theology, there's something to the openness with which they live their lives that I find admirable.
There will be things I do in my life which won't find approval from the majority of people. They will think I'm small-minded, provincial, perhaps even a "neanderthal" as one of my colleagues has said about women who stay home. Well, we're adopting. We're Christians. We are looking at homeschooling. There are mistakes to be made, and I'm going to set out and make them without hiding what I think or just plain hiding. I hope I don't swing too far the other way and err toward squashing others in the process, but I'm done with worry silencing me.
Dave Ramsey reminded me of a quote today at a seminar full of great quotes:
"To avoid criticism say nothing, do nothing, be nothing. ~Aristotle"
... and of course “The fear of man lays a snare,” the Bible says, “but whoever trusts in the Lord is safe” (Proverbs 29:25).
The fear of man is a somewhat Christianese phrase, but it is such a great concept, and encapsulates one of the primary differences between a Gospel-centered theology and one based falsely on ideas of prosperity, ease and blessing belonging to Christians in their worldly lives. Being driven by prosperity gospels and even bless-perity gospels lead Christians to be all sorts of jerks to their fellow humans. I like how Piper describes our longing to worship the blessings rather than the God giving them:
"We all make a god out of what we take the most pleasure in. Christian Hedonists want to make God their God by seeking after the greatest pleasure—pleasure in him.
By Christian Hedonism, we do not mean that our happiness is the highest good. We mean that pursuing the highest good will always result in our greatest happiness in the end. We should pursue this happiness, and pursue it with all our might. The desire to be happy is a proper motive for every good deed, and if you abandon the pursuit of your own joy you cannot love man or please God."
Totally unrelated to the post, I giggled when I saw that googling "fear of man" gives you an option of googling "fear of
mannequins". Let's face it: they are creepy, creepy indeed.