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In the midst of a dry spell, I like to say that I’m not motivated. But that just isn’t true! I’m motivated all the time and so are you. Unfortunately, we aren’t always motivated to do the best things.

My family recently had the pleasure of visiting the Naval Air Museum in Florida and watching the Blue Angels practice. My ten-year-old son embarrassed his father and me to tears by continuing to drop the flag to the ground rather than raising it high in respect when the planes taxied in. The presence of the crowd intensified our encouragement (yelling) to him to stop dropping the flag while he fidgeted with his socks.

Like typical homeschoolers, my husband and I wondered where we’d gone wrong. Surely we had taught our son the importance of not dragging our country’s flag through the dirt? I determined then and there that we’d be doing a lesson on flag etiquette when we got home. The shame of it all was a huge motivator for me.

Only after the ceremony ended did we realize that our son was motivated, too. He wanted to wave the flag, but something else was eating at him. He had stepped in a fire ant hill and his legs were swarming with the insects. The happy news is a nice couple sitting in front of us who had endured our ego-driven encouragement (yes, the yelling) had everything needed to treat the bites immediately.

The anxiety my husband and I experienced about our parenting and homeschooling during the air show was unfounded. Some of your anxiety is, too. With God’s help, we can get our kids’ education off the ground.

Have you ever been surprised by the real reason your child wasn’t doing what s/he was “supposed” to do?

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