12 Mar 2008 15 Comments
Ashpenaz blazed through town snatching young men from their homes. The policeman searched for the handsome, strong, and intelligent. When he found such youth, he carted them off to the king’s palace.
One of my biggest fears is that my children will be taken away from me. It is completely irrational, but, nonetheless, it is a fear. Can this sneaking trepidation be overcome? It is so stealth an issue I haven’t given it much concentrated thought. The anxiety surfaces when a sheriff pulls up to our house, or the headlines falsely proclaim, “Homeschooling is unconstitutional.” Maybe standing face to face with this fear will put things into perspective.
What if homeschooling was illegal? Imaginary scenarios are difficult for me, especially this one. We have laws that protect the intrinsic rights of parents in the land of the free. My hope is they will not be encroached upon, but what if they are? Laws could have any number of restrictions, culminating in the removal of children from parents and placing them in government schools. Would that happen? It’s doubtful, but that did happen to a child named Daniel.
Daniel was one of the young men taken away from his home by Ashpenaz. The king wanted the brightest and best. King Nebuchadnezzar began their training by giving them a superior Babylonian education. Completely surrounded by the culture, Daniel still refused to worship Nebuchadnezzar. Gazing at the rich table set before him,
Daniel made up his mind that he would not defile himself…Daniel 1:8
Daniel resolved. He determined in his heart to remain a Jew. Daniel followed the king’s orders until they went against his conscious. Then he chose lions’ mouths to preserve his most precious possession; his faith in God.
A wise preacher told me,
You have to choose which hill you will die on.
I pass many hills not worth climbing. For the sake of my children, I will traverse any mountain. I’m just not sure public education resides on a mountain. Public schools do not force children to worship the state. If the law said my children had to attend public school, I would appeal repeatedly. I would try escaping. But in the end, we all have to trust in something greater than our ability. Even if our children receive an education founded on biblical principles, the choice to embrace it is up to them.