Homeschool is not just about academics. Every parent wants to instill in their child the skills he will need for day to day life as an adult. One of the awesome things about homeschooling is that we can teach our teens life skills in a natural way and give them high school elective credit for their efforts.
My heart is racing as I write these words. My oldest daughter, Rebekah, received her official acceptance packet to attend Discipleship Training School in Taiwan. Ever since she first expressed interest in attending DTS overseas, we have been encouraging her to go. We are so excited!
During the training phase of DTS, Rebekah will be at the YWAM (Youth With a Mission) base in Taipei, Taiwan. She will take classes, work with a mentor, study the Bible, draw near to God, engage in ministry, and prepare for an outreach. Then she will travel with her team to another country to share the love of Christ abroad.
The coming weeks will certainly be a whirlwind of activity as we prepare for her departure in March. We are trusting God to direct our steps and provide for every need that arises.
I will admit it right now. I am not sure where the money for Rebekah’s DTS is going to come from, but I know that God will provide. In the coming days, my daughter has her work cut out for her. With the help of a friend from church, she is planning what to say when she announces her upcoming adventure to our congregation. She just finished setting up online donations so friends and family who do not live nearby can have an opportunity to support her.
Ever since Rebekah expressed an interest in attending DTS in Taiwan, I have been investigating airfares. After she received her acceptance packet, we prayed for wisdom about the best dates for her to fly and the best timing for us to purchase the ticket. Yesterday, my husband looked at the fares and declared it was time. I clicked the appropriate buttons and bought her round trip ticket to Taiwan.
Did you know that missionaries need travel insurance? Specialized insurance companies provide medical coverage worldwide. I certainly would not have considered the need for insurance to cover loss of property, medical evacuation, or the myriad of other situations these policies address. I was glad to be able to get a reasonable quote from Talent Trust Consultants, who even provided a discount since Rebekah will be serving with YWAM.
Since most countries require that passport pictures be submitted along with visa applications, and we do not yet know what country Rebekah will be doing her outreach in, YWAM asked that she bring along four extra passport pictures. In addition, she will be using a couple passport pictures this month, when she applies for her visa to stay in Taiwan. She and her dad will be heading out to the AAA office this weekend to have those photos taken.
Because Rebekah’s round trip ticket will span more than three months, she needs to apply for a visitor visa to Taiwan as soon as possible. After submitting an online application, she will travel downtown and visit the consulate to receive the visa. The logistics of working all of this out are a little murky at the moment, but I am confident God will direct us.
The only way all of these factors will come together is by His hand. The mountain of preparations we are facing at this moment is certainly bigger than we can handle on our own. However, God is bigger than any mountain we could ever face. I pray that God will continue to show us exactly what needs to be done and open the doors we do not yet know about so that we (or she) will be able to walk through them when the time comes.
Would you like to partner with us? I invite you to be a part of my daughter’s incredible journey to the other side of the world. If you want to commit to pray for Rebekah’s DTS or even contribute financially, click on over to GiveSendGo and let her know.
This is the second in a series of blog posts about Rebekah’s upcoming adventure. In the first, I share why my husband and I are encouraging her to leave the country. In the third, I travel back in time to share the past experiences in Taiwan that have inspired her to attend DTS there.
While my 13 year old daughter was reorganizing her room a few weeks ago, she asked for a hamper so she and her younger sister could start doing their own laundry. I should have been doing the happy dance, right? Instead, I found myself second-guessing her motives and my worth as a mom.
Was she asking because I could not keep up with all the laundry? Had I failed in yet another area of mothering and homemaking?
Are you as intimidated by high school electives as I once was? For the first year or two my teens were in high school, I hunted down curriculum like a madwoman, assuming that we needed to approach elective classes the same way as all of our other homeschool subjects. Nothing could be further from the truth.
High school academics can be challenging for homeschool moms and their teens. There is no need to add extra stress by requiring many rigorous electives that hold little interest for your student. Electives can be fun and easy!
I remember the day my son got his braces on. He did not want them. I was overwhelmed at the idea and had no idea what to expect. However, he needed them, our insurance helped to cover them, and on they went.
During the course of treatment, his gums began to cover the brackets, and the orthodontist referred him to a periodontal specialist. While I waited anxiously, my son underwent gum surgery to trim them back to size.
I shared in his excitement when at last the braces were removed and he could eat crunchy, chewy things again. He has always been faithful in wearing his retainers and has beautiful, straight teeth.
When I was eleven years old, I looked on in awe as an office secretary typed a letter to a client. How her fingers could fly! I wanted to learn to type like that!
Unfortunately, my parents insisted I wait a few years until I could be properly instructed. I had to wait until high school, but it was worth the wait; I became one of the best typists in the class, and I can still type seventy words per minute with a fair amount of accuracy.
Last summer my twin daughters told me they wanted to learn how to touch type. Because they often use computers to write, I agreed. But how would I teach them?
I explained to my daughter that simply completing the main subjects—English, Math, Science, and History—this semester will not automatically make her a tenth grader in the fall. She also needs to complete a couple electives. We started to brainstorm some ideas.
Last Friday I traded places with a stranger. I stepped out of the passenger seat, and the DMV evaluator climbed in.
From the front of the building, I watched my son easily maneuver Dad’s car around the parking lot in forward and reverse, breeze in and out of the parallel parking spot, and effortlessly back into a traditional parking spot. When he drove out of the parking lot for the road portion of his driving test, I stepped into the building to await his return. He appeared to do a great job on the test course, but what would the official score say? Would he make a mistake on the road that would prevent him from getting his license today?
In six short weeks, my oldest daughter may be traveling to Taiwan for three months and then to another country for two additional months. Though we will certainly miss her, my husband and I are both encouraging her to go. It has nothing to do with politics and everything to do with our desire for God’s best in her life.
We have mentioned the option to our daughter several times since she graduated a year and a half ago - DTS (Discipleship Training School) with YWAM (Youth With a Mission). The program for high school graduates includes three months of discipleship training followed by two to three months of outreach in a foreign country. She could attend a DTS anywhere in the world. She has chosen Taiwan.
Does your high school student spend hours drawing, taking pictures, caring for young children, or writing computer programs? Does she enjoy reading about a particular topic or participating in an interesting activity? Does he need to log hours of exercise to satisfy a P.E. credit or certain number of driving hours before he gets his license?
Using Airtable, I created a chart that can help you stay organized.