Hospitality Table: The Unseen Guest at Every Meal

Editor’s Note: Today’s blog post, “Hospitality Table: The Unseen Guest at Every Meal,” is written by Vic and Christine, who serve with Medical Ambassadors International at the California headquarters office. Vic is a medical doctor who coordinates MAI’s international ministry in holistic community development. Christine is a former Fulbright Scholar and health educator who served in Africa and then later in Asia with her husband. They homeschool their two girls, Selah and Rinnah.

Brunch at the Hospitality Table

If this table could talk… It might seem strange to ask for prayer for our dining room table. It’s a long, heavy, big black table that my husband’s brother gave us when we returned from Asia and moved to California’s Central Valley. Sometimes, the table gets covered in mail and butterfly crafts and piano lesson books, and it’s seen its share of spills and scratches. But, in our family priorities, its main role is to be the gathering place for our guests. Read more

Soul Surgery – The Power of Confessing Our Sins Together

Mom and Daughter pray together - the soul surgery of confession

Have you ever been involved in the soul surgery of family or church confession to God for failure in any area? I have. I remember a time when our elders confessed their failing and when our church corporately confessed our failing in the same meeting. Members stood up, confessed their sin, and then we all prayed our confession corporately. I also remember a time when a member of our church staff confessed moral failure from the pulpit and resigned. And, I remember times in my own household when my husband and I would have to come before the Lord and confess our failure in response to a disagreement, confessing our poor responses to one another and to God. Read more

Emotional Prayer – Teaching Your Children to Pray What They Feel

Hands held, praying together - emotional prayer blog

I recently took a three-day retreat. During this time, I stayed at a spiritual retreat house that included a small library with many Christian books. Among the books, I found Tom Holladay’s The Relationship Principles of Jesus (2008). I was completely struck by Tom’s second exercise on relationship which included David’s model of Emotional Prayer, based on the Psalms. Read more

What If? – Staying True to the Intergenerational Investment of Home Education

Silhouette of a Child leaning against a tree and reading the Bible

In the 75th anniversary of Wycliffe’s ministry in Bible translation, I found myself absorbed in reading their history over the holidays. Obstacles, such as cross-cultural and linguistic challenges, kidnapping, and martyrdom wove throughout Wycliffe’s history.

I was particularly struck by the story of Chet Bitterman. When Chet was considering missions work, he told his wife, “I’ve only got seventy-five years on this earth at best. I want to use them to give someone the Bible.” So in obedience to their calling, this young couple joined Wycliffe (p. 103). Chet and his wife, Brenda, prepared for missions work and were to work with the Carijona people. As they prepared to move to this village in Colombia, they were at the Summer Institute of Linguistics in Colombia.

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Should you be sheltering students from evidence against Christianity?

Editor’s Note: Sean McDowell is an internationally known apologist, author and expert on helping youth cultivate a flourishing faith. Originally posted to SeanMcDowell.org on January 13, 2017, today’s article was the #1 post on his blog last year. Have thoughts to share about Sheltering Students? Join the conversation on Facebook.

Teenage girl with backpack steps into a shelter in the woods

Sheltering students from beliefs contrary to Christianity is a big mistake. Let me say it again, to be sure it sinks in: Sheltering students from arguments for other religions, or against Christianity, is a bad strategy for developing them as disciples in the faith.

In his book You Lost Me, researcher David Kinnaman argues that “protecting” kids from opposing viewpoints is ultimately detrimental to their faith. Like “helicopter parents” who “hover” over their children to keep them from any conceivable danger, many young Christians feel that the church demonizes everything outside the church, fails to expose students to the complexities of the “real” world, and is too overprotective. Read more

Resolutions for Change: Conducting Teacher Evaluations for Homeschoolers

Woman holding up a shiny January Calendar for resolutions - BYA's Teacher Evaluation blogHappy New Year! When January 1st rolls around, homeschoolers have the opportunity to hit the reset button, and get a fresh start by creating resolutions together. Doing this well takes intention, motivation and careful conversation with your children.

Now that you are half-way through the homeschooling year, take inventory of how things are going. Carve out time in your busy schedule to pause, reflect, and pray about the last few months. Ask God to highlight the strengths of your family and homeschooling—and to graciously point out areas to improve in the coming year. Read more

Where are They Now? Interview with Homeschool Alumnus Joshua Johnson

Young man standing under large tree beneath a stary sky - Homeschool Alumnus Blog

Our Homeschool Alumnus, Joshua Johnson graduated high school in 2015. Before that, he enrolled in Torrey Academy, where he took several online courses. As a senior, Joshua was a recipient of the 2015 Biola Youth Scholarship for writing an essay on how BYA impacted his spiritual growth in high school through reading the works of C.S. Lewis in Torrey Academy.

BYA caught up with Joshua to hear where he’s been since graduating, and how his experience helped him flourish in life after high school. Read more

“Sticker Shock” – Choosing to Invest in Your Home

Editor’s Note: Today’s post, “‘Sticker Shock’ – Choosing to Invest in Your Home,” comes from Rebecca Kocsis, who serves as general manager of CHEA, and Director of CHEA’s Support Network. This post originally appeared on CHEA’s blog, Homeschool411; we’re grateful for Rebecca’s willingness to speak from her two decades of homeschool experience, as well as CHEA’s faithful 35 years of serving Homeschool families in Southern California.

Couch – Invest in Your Home BYA blogHomeschoolers live in their houses all day, every day. Contrary to our traditional schooling counterparts, who are often out of the home for the better part of the day, our homes are well occupied. Because they are well occupied, our furnishings have a way of developing that lived-in look well before their time. That “lived-in look” is fine for a pair of jeans or old sneakers, but on sofas it quickly deteriorates to just plain old shabby. I know that the shabby chic look is in, but too shabby is not chic. Read more

Budgeting for Teens – Five Money Tips for Homeschoolers

Teen's homeschool desk with budgeting supplies

As home educators, we have the opportunity to teach our children invaluable life skills, such as financial literacy—this begins with budgeting for teens under our roof.

My mother taught me a great method for managing my money as a young child. It was the 10/10/80 plan. I would tithe 10% of my allowance, save 10% of my allowance, and spend 80% of my allowance. I have implemented the 10/10/80 most of my life, except, as I have gotten older and had more income, I give more than 10% and save more than 10%. By always living within my means, I don’t go into debt, except for items that are true investments, such as real estate or an education. Read more

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