real encouragement for real homeschooling moms

a true visionary daughter

Several years ago, Clay and I took our boys to the Cedar Rapids, Iowa Museum of Art to participate in a celebration of Grant Wood’s masterpiece American Gothic. Known as perhaps the greatest regional artist, Wood’s paintings reflect the simple Midwestern life of the early 1900’s and the sturdy men and women of that time in history. It is said that at one time, every home in Cedar Rapids boasted an original Grant Wood, he was so prolific, but fame did not come to him until he studied the Dutch masters and employed their techniques for bringing dimension and depth to canvas.

It was as we walked through the museum enjoying many of his original works that had been brought in for the event that I first saw The Adoration of the Home, the piece that graces the heading on this blog. I had read Wood’s biography and knew that his father had died when he was a child and that he made his home with his mother for most of his life. But the influence she had in his life took on new meaning to me as I studied this painting.

From Grant’s perspective, men from all callings in life must recognize that the mother, supported by wisdom that comes from the Word of God, is the pillar who upholds the home. The book of knowledge is in her lap, her children coming to her, naked and needy. I am humbled and honored as a mother when I think of the profound message found in this lovely work of art.

During the Treasures retreat a few weeks ago, I had these wonderful truths painted for me again, but this time in the words of my friend, Jill Mueller. Jill is 15 years old and I was blessed to have her in a speech class I taught last spring. One day I had asked her to speak on the topic “who is your hero?” and was so moved by her response. She answered that her hero is her mom and went on to tell the class why. It was a most lovely expression of honoring your parents as well as an awesome example of relationship homeschooling at its finest. (Three cheers for Carl and Martha, her mom and dad) I knew then that Jill’s message needed a wider audience, that more moms should benefit from the encouragement Jill brought to me that afternoon.

On this week’s podcast, December 5, I am excited to bring you Jill’s testimony at the 2008 mom’s retreat. I guarantee that it will brighten your day and that you will be inspired by this delightful and truly visionary daughter. Be sure you don’t miss it!


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