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Friendship - Issue 167
September 17, 2010
Hi there! ....

This week We have had a great week as far as lessons go with my younger two -11 / 13yo. (The older two are independent and consistent so their studies just roll on.) The key to our success? Simplify – Reduce – Priorities. It may seem like we did little but what we did do, we did well. The other thing I noticed was that we finished most lessons when the kids were still keen to learn more – this certainly made it easier to pick up the next day.

Live life with your kids!

If you are an Australian reader I would appreciate you reading this special request.


This week I enjoyed several interactions with good friends – I had a lunch with a friend and her family, a cuppa with another, I had a few email chats with friends, and I had a ladies friendship night with Christian ladies from around town. This really is a very social week for me but it brings to mind the importance and blessing of friends. I am indeed blessed.

Do we stop and ask ourselves about our children and their friends – or their need for friends and how we are helping them in that need? For those who send their kids to school it is easy to say “they are with friends all day”, and for those who homeschool we are so thingy about the “socialisation” question that it is easy to gloss over the truth of this aspect of our children’s lives. We all need friends.

It takes time to develop and nurture a friendship. Time is one of the most guarded commodities we have. Are we investing our time into friends for ourselves and for our children?

A friend will:

  • Encourage us – they may correct us, and it may hurt, but we know they have our best interests at heart (Prov 27:6)
  • Introduce things to us that we have never thought of before, open a new world to us through their wisdom, knowledge and understanding (Prov 27:9)
  • Be there in tough times (Prov 27:10)
  • Help us be finely tuned, sharp and on the ball whether we are pursuing God, knowledge or a practical skill (Prov 27:17)

We need to encourage our children to pursue friends that are going to give them these things. Too often so called friends can feed our selfish heart; the Bible would call these bad associations. We are to keep away from such people – we are instead to pursue a friend that will be true.

Our family has been very blessed with the friendships that our children have formed, but there have been times when our kids have felt lonely. They had friends but they weren’t friends who shared their hearts longings. That feeling of being lonely in a crowd is very hard place to be. In such times I have encouraged my children

  • to see family as friends and to be thankful for family
  • to pray for a friend
  • to see people around them who don’t have friends and to be a friend to them.
These things take their eyes off of themselves and onto other people.

Though we all need friends, the Bible tells us very clearly that we are to be a friend. (Prov 18:24). Coupled with the idea that we are to love others even if they don’t love us back, we are to have a different perspective on friendships than we find in the community around us (which in general is very self serving perspective.)

  • A godly friend will love, without expecting anything in return
  • A godly friend will serve, regardless of the circumstances
  • A godly friend will listen, even if they are bored,
  • A godly friend will give, even if they are tired
… because they care

We need to cultivate these attitudes (and actions) in our children.

The family is the first place that our children learn to be friends. We have an understanding in our home that if you can’t be friends with your siblings, then you do not have the opportunity to be a friend with someone else. We need to work on our family friendships first. This means our children learn to

  • greet each other in the morning, and say good night in the evening
  • thank each other for the little things that are done for them
  • be sensitive to each others emotional needs
  • defer to each other (play the game that the other wants to play)
  • speak kind and encouraging words to each other
  • be happy to be together
  • believe what the other is saying
  • do things for each other
  • plan to do things together
  • have a heart-desire to keep things in harmony, be sad when things go wrong
  • be quick to say sorry
These are the things we expect to see in a friendship – we need to expect them in our family. I think this verse from Ecclesiastes gives our children a good long term reason to pursue a close friendship with their brother or sister.

Two are better than one,
Because they have a good reward for their labour
For if they fall, one will lift up his companion.
But woe to him who is alone when he falls
For he has no one to help him up.
Ecc 4:9

We all need a friend!

Blog Updates this week
Making my Priorities my Priorities – in the office
Internet Reading links
What is Notebooking
The things you find
Pace yourself

I did a series of journaling this week – writing about the details of each day.
Things not mentioned - just filling in a few blanks

Friday and Saturday are coming - I'll post them up during the weekend.

Blending Life with Lessons e-book - Does your everyday life challenge your homeschool ideas? This is my journey as I discover that it is possible to disciple my children in today's busy lifestyle.

Heart Focus Parenting - A heart focused parent will keep their attention on their child's heart for God, instead of on external behaviours.

My Sitemap is a quick reference to all you will find on Lifestyle-Homeschool. I encourage you to have a browse around!

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Until next week

Belinda Letchford
Living life with her kids in Australia!

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