HS #246 Homeschooling the Next Great Generation! Wendy Speake and Jonathan Catherman

HS #246 Homeschooling the Next Great Generation! Wendy Speake and Jonathan Catherman

Links and Resources:

Show Notes:

Today we are talking about raising children to be ready to take on the many demands of life! This is so much more than reading, writing and arithmetic. If you’ve ever wanted a “manual” or a “guide” — or wanted to pass a manual / guide onto your children as they hit middle school and high school… this is the conversation for you!


Jonathan Catherman is a sociologist and educator who has worked in private and public education for 24 years. He speaks worldwide to diverse audiences of all ages and is the author of the bestselling books for teens The Manual to Manhood and The Manual to Middle School. For those of you listening with daughters, Jonathan’s wife Erica authored The Girls’ Guide to Conquering Life and The Girl’s Guide to Conquering Middle School. His most recent books, Guiding The Next Generation and Becoming The Next Generation are a wonderful resource for parents and their teens to read in tandem. Together they founded and run the 1M Mentoring Foundation. They are raising two teens in Charlotte, NC.


  • The Manual To Manhood
  • The Manual To Middle School
  • The Girls’ Guide To Conquering Life
  • The Girls’ Guide To Conquering Middle School
  • Guiding The Next Great Generation
  • Becoming The Next Great Generation
  • The 1M Mentoring Foundation. (Men & Women in the Making Clubs)




Show Transcript:

HS EP Jonathan CathermanWendy - Hello and welcome back to another installment of the Homeschool Solutions Show. My name is Wendy Speake and I am one of the many hosts we have here on the podcast. Each week, you'll hear from one of us inviting one of our friends to join for a conversation about this busy, blessed season as we educate our children at home.Now the title of the show is Homeschool Solutions. While we don't have the answer to every question, we know that all the solutions to every stress and every struggle can be found in the Person and presence of Jesus Christ and His living and active and applicable Word. We are so glad that you're here to join us for today's conversation. But before we start the show, I'd like to thank our sponsors. Medi-Share. An affordable and Biblical healthcare alternative. Find out more at mychristiancare.org for their ongoing support of homeschooling families just like yours.Operation Christmas Child. Many of you have packed gift-filled shoeboxes. But the duty of a shoebox doesn't end there. Discover how Operation Christmas Child shoebox gifts lead to evangelism, discipleship, and the multiplication of believers and planting of churches at samaritanspurse.org/makedisciples.And now, on to today's show.Hello everybody. Today's guest is Jonathan Catherman. He is a sociologist and educator. He's worked in private and public education for 24 years. He speaks worldwide to diverse audiences of all ages and is the author of the best selling books for teens, The Manual to Manhood, and The Manual to Middle School. And for those of you listening with daughters, Jonathan's wife Erica authored The Girl's Guide to Conquering Life and The Girl's Guide to Conquering Middle School.But his most recent books, there are two of them, and I'll explain how they go together, are Guiding the Next Great Generation and Becoming the Next Great Generation. And they are wonderful resources for parents and their teens to read in tandem. And I'm really excited to talk about that. This is a treat for me today because my husband and I, along with our two oldest sons, are currently going through these latest books. Again, Guiding the Next Great Generation and Becoming the Next Great Generation. And I love this concept that Jonathan has written two separate books for parents and their kids to read in tandem, and then talk through together. I think it's brilliant and I wanna know all about how that came together. But first, let's just welcome Jonathan and just...we're so glad that you're here. I know that you spent a lot of time talking to traditionally schooled kids and their parents, but thank you for hopping over to the homeschool arena and pouring into us today.Jonathan - Wendy, I was so excited to receive your invitation, so I jumped on it and I'm really thankful to be here.Wendy - Awesome. Well, would you tell us, before we get into the nitty-gritty of what it is you practice and preach? Just tell us a bit about who you are and who your family is.Jonathan - Oh, well, who I am, who my family is, those things are combined and I think that so many people who are passionate about family and want the very best for them, see the same, cause I know that I'm unique and each one of them are unique, but together we're so much better. So, I, of course, wanna talk about my family first. Erica and I have been married for 23 years. We were high school sweethearts. I believe she's the most beautiful girl in the world. In fact, if you tell Siri on my phone to call the most beautiful girl in the world, her phone will ring.Wendy - I love it. Jonathan - We have two sons. Reed and Cole. And Reed is older, he's 19, Cole is 16, but taller. So, Cole may be the younger, but he makes it known regularly that he is the taller brother. They are very...just...I really enjoy my sons. They are fun to be around. Great senses of humor. Reed is extremely creative. He's very artistic. He sings, he draws, he produces short films. And his heart is for justice. And Cole is very athletic. Like I said, he's tall. People think he plays basketball, but he is a high jumper, and I have the privilege of being his coach. He's also tech-minded, so not only is he like many young kids these days, love all the video gaming, but he also codes and he's constantly thinking about kinda that stem mindset of how to create things in this new digital era.So, we're all so very very different, but yet, we were created to be together, and that's what I love about it. God said I got a plan for you and it involves these people and I wouldn't wanna see it any other way.Wendy - So cool. So cool. Well, tell me about your life in education and how maybe, I'm just guessing here, I didn't read this about you but, I just imagine that being in education, or having a plan for it, before kids, somehow becomes a little more personal when you do have children. And then how that kind of, I don't...were you writing first? Were you a sociologist first? Were you in education first? Like, what's your story there?Jonathan - Right. So, I'm a sociologist. And education I use as a broad term, because I've been in student ministry, I've taught at the college level. For ten years I was researching writing and speaking to educators around the country on character and leadership development of the culture on a campus. Which is really...I mean it's the same outcome we're looking for in the culture of our home. How do we help our children discover and become all they're created to be in unique ways? So, I spent years, unfortunately, yet I know this was part of the plan...I spent years on the road, and it was very difficult to come home and recalibrate into a week where I'd been away. And Erica is such a phenomenal mom and doer of all things, and now I've gotta be, you know, Dad and husband and in a way, that doesn't overstep what has already been established for a while as a way and agreed upon. And I gotta remember that this is how things are here, not just the way Jonathan says he wants them.And so, as an educator, when I would talk with districts and teachers and do research and present and we would be talking about how consistency is so critical for...in the education process. And so, as a parent, you know, you can research all that, but when you have to really start to live it, and, at home, it becomes very very real. So, I would agree with you. It is, you know, the two have to match our education style and our parenting style. Which really is part of a process. And whether you're homeschool or public school, private school. If you're a combination of both, we know that the consistency is critical. So, the big thing for me was learning how to be consistent in how I communicate consistent, and how we set goals consistent. And how we just do this thing called life. And thankfully, the last couple years, I've been home full time, writing, speaking, on occasion. I get out a couple times a month to go speak at a conference or go do some consulting. And it's just been a real blessing to be able to reconnect my family during some of the most critical years of my sons experience in the relationship ??? with my wife, Erica.W - That's wonderful. I love...I just jotted down what you said, that your job outside of the home, on campuses was to help kids discover and...J - Discover and become.W - All they were created to be. And how do we do that? And then, coming home on more full time, and not that you weren't already doing that, but I'm imagining that the emphasis, more than ever, is now the very same thing. But right there in your home. And then, through even these books and these podcasts, helping our kids. Not just helping educators, but helping parents help their kids to discover and become all they were created to be.You know, a lot of us in the homeschooling community, you know, we didn't choose to keep our children home because we thought we could do a better job with math with our kids. That...or do a better job at teaching them grammar. Reading, writing arithmetic. It really was this, I know that both of my interview with Sally Clarkson, and my interview with September McCarthy...and both women who have already successfully launched multiple children, and had grandchildren even, said that one of the main top three reasons why they chose to homeschool was the character piece. And not just the character piece, but the discovering what God made them for and they thought having them at home would give them the space and their children the space too, become creative and discover, what do I enjoy doing? What...I'm reminded of that quote in Chariots of Fire, where Erick Liddell says, when I run, I feel God's pleasure. And that's what we wanna help our kids discover is, what were you created for, and let me help you get there. J - Exactly. And we are all created for something different, and unique, and at the same time, we're created to work together. That's that interdependent relationship we have. And I think that as a parent, we want to see our children have a better life than ours. And it's not that we've had bad lives. I certainly have talked to plenty adults who have said, I would never want my children to have the childhood I had. That's why I work so very hard to provide for them something new. And then I meet other adults who are like, eh, I had a great childhood! I surely hope my kids get to expand on that. And have an even better experience.But as parents, we want our kids to have a better life than our own. Which means we have to be engaged in that life. And it can be exhausting. We all know that parenting is like the human experiment. What worked with child one, doesn't work with child two. W - Oh really? J - When Reed was coming into adolescence, I remember, I'm thinking, I'm an expert on this. I'm a sociologist. I study young people. I study generations. I should know how to do this way better than I'm performing. I remember one night, sitting with him, just looking at him in his eyes. We probably both had tears in our eyes. I said, Reed, I've never been the parent of a teenager before. And he looked at me kinda like, oh, thank goodness. But he's also, like, yeah, I've never been a teenager before. And we had this kind of epiphany in that moment, like, we're both...we should be experts, cause we're in the throes of it. Real-life. But the reality is, we're both at it as a first time go. And then, Cole shows up and I had to finally admit to him one day, I said, you know what, I've never been a parent of a teenager like you before. W - You know, there's so much respect there. I know that this is gonna send us perfectly into these last two books that you published. Because I think that one of our struggles is that's are a generation, and I know that there have been other generations before us, who lean towards authoritarian-style of parenting. The "because I said so," and what worked for me, you need to learn to study like I studied. You need to learn to take tests like I took tests. You need to do your research for finding where you're gonna go to college. You need to learn these specific study skills. And it should look like this. And I find that I, even, have that, no matter how much I encourage parents to be tender-hearted and observer, a learner of their child, I think that before we can teach our children, we have to learn our children. And it's just so very difficult for me to stop my roll sometimes. You know, our kids are going to be immature. It's their job at 14 to be more immature than we are. And then to stop my roll and berating for what they're doing that's childish, and say, hmm, what's going on here? What's unique about them? What's unique about their generation? And how can I call them up into maturity rather than the typical, "because I said so." It never really works. And it just find it's very respectful to say, hey, I've not done this before and I've never raised you through this season before, so let's learn how to do this together.J - Right. We're better when we do this together. And authoritarian...I mean the intentions are good. Look, I have high demands of you because I expect a lot of you. But there's very little response and very little level of love. And love needs to involve empathy. And it's really hard, I think, as a parent going, with teenagers today, to truly have that kind of empathy where I can see myself in your shoes. Because the listeners that are in on our conversation right now are probably gen-x'ers. There might be some boomers and they're, you know, that are grandparents, or maybe had kids a little later in life. But most of your listeners are probably gen-x'ers, or maybe even early millennials. But the shift in the cultural norm between when we were their age and kids today, is dramatic. It's so...say, look, I have high expectations of you, and I'm gonna love you through this process so I'm here with you, means we have to be even more tuned into the empathy that we do not understand cause we did not experience it. Which means we need to slow our roll, pay close attention, and try to see things through a new lens. Which is kinda hard for some people to put on.W - So good. And the very first...so let's talk about how these two books work together. Cause I've never seen anything like it so I wanna know how they came to be, but I don't wanna camp out there too long cause I really wanna get into the material that Guiding the Next Generation. And the subtle is Rethinking how Teens Become Competent and Capable Adults. This is a book you wrote for us as parents. But there's a book that has much of the same content. I mean there are even some paragraphs that are identical, or almost. But, you have another book that's written to the teen that's called, Becoming the Next Great Generation. And so, our boys, our two oldest boys, and I are reading through this at the same time, where they read their chapter. I read mine. And there are questions at the end of them. Just a few, nothing laborious. But to get us thinking. And then we can come together and have a conversation, or not. That's another thing that I'm learning. It's okay if I don't do a sit-down conversation over all this with them. But I am learning, and they are learning, and it just, it's been such a blessing for us, already, in the first few chapters. So tell us how this came to be and how you imagined it working.J - Sure. Well, the come to how we first...or I sat down to start writing The Next Great Gen series. We gotta kinda go back to the beginning, which is...when I wrote The Manual to Manhood, I wrote it for my sons. And actually, it wasn't a book at first, it was a cloud file. Entitle the cloud files, if anything ever happens to me. Because I've been in the experience while on a business trip, where I was in a massive car accident. And in the middle of the accident, I'm like, I'm gonna die. I'm not gonna be able to see my sons grow up. Who will help raise my boys?And, again, Erica, super mom, could do a phenomenal job, but I knew part of my responsibility as a father was those rites of passive, helping them become men. And then there was a selfish joy, I think. I was gonna miss out on. But thankfully, walked away from this accident. Nothing more than a bruised hip and a totaled rental car. And I said I gotta do something,So, I started writing this cloud file. Anything ever happens to me, and it was assigned to my sons. And, long story short, that cloud file, my mentor said, is not just for your boys, it is for others and it ended up becoming Manual to Manhood, the book, which is now bestseller around the world. I just got a call last night, from someone that they are reading it in Vietnamese now. I thought that was kinda fun.Well, following Manual to Manhood, my sons and I wrote the Manual to Middle School, because of a transition that they were...one of my boys was going through, between elementary and middle, and the elder was giving him advice. I'm like, this is great content. Well, that carried forward into the girl's books. Girls Guide to Conquering Life and Girl's Guide to Conquering Middle School. And, then, publishers and others asking, what are you gonna write next, Jonathan? What are you gonna write next? And so, I'm like, you know, I wanna do something about this next generation, actually coming of age and seeing their place in this world with confidence. And so, I started writing a book and I realized, as I was crafting, I realized the very first thing I'm telling people to do is bridge the gap between the generations, so I can't write for one generation. I've actually gotta write for the generations on the other side of the gap. So my mindset was actually focused on writing for young people first. And I had to recalibrate and write for adults. And to be honest with you, it's harder to write for adults. Cause we have a fixed mindset, often, about how we think things should be, and if we had your listeners, actually seeing right now, I could show them these really cool charts about how the cultural norm has shifted so far, and why, and what Moore's Law and technology has to do with that. And they all go, yeah, yeah, yeah, but when I was your age, you know, cell phones didn't even exist, they had cords on 'em. You know, we can make fun and joke about when we were their age because we have something to go back to and remember. But young people today, they're energetic about the future. They're excited about what's to come. But they don't have the history to look back on, so they don't have foresight with hindsight. Which would be insight. Instead, they're just sort of running forward at work, telling them, put on the brakes, you know, you're driving too fast through life. And so, pausing to write for adults to kind of get them out of the "this can't be" mindset into "what can be" mindset, because of what is proposed to the next generation. That's why I call them the next great generation. I believe what's proposed for them is greatness like we've never seen before. I believe they have more potential to do good in this world than any generation before. So, hence, we had to write two books.W - That's great. And you know, I think that that's one of the things that we miss, so many of us. And, again, we're speaking to the homeschool community and we wanna spend more time with our kids. We wanna speak blessing over their lives. And yet, there's so often this tendency to point out everything they and their generation do wrong. Well you're always doing this, and how come you guys are always that...put down your phone, and... and you don't need to always be entertained. And, yet, you're talking about anticipating great things from them. And oh that we would switch our script to speak blessing and say, ah, I'm expecting from you. Let's look at what you're generation is gonna do. Let's look at what you're gonna do. Again, how can we help our kids discover and become all they were created to be. I think that many of us freak out at our kids because we don't think that they're ready to take on the demands of life.J - Well, they're not! W - They're not. And what generation has been? But I think that we think more than ever, and more than any generation, they're the least equipped, is what I think that we're always doing. But I think that our parents thought that, and their parents thought that. And so, you're passionate about getting teens ready for the demands of life. But you do it in a way that said, you can do this, rather than, condemning...look what's wrong with you and generation. So, can you tell us why you're so adamant about getting them ready for the demands of life? And what that's gonna look like? How we can do that.J - Sure. Okay, so, I think, and I love the language you're using. Because demand is the right word. So, I think we need to...first thing we need to do to help prepared young people today is to work on our adult language. Because when we use the language correctly it changes the meaning, though we're used to saying something completely different. For instance, we say they're gonna have such a great challenge in life coming up. And my brain goes, that's amazing. Because our brain actually likes challenges. We don't like threats. Right, but challenges, we'll take those on. There's nothing too far. There's nothing too near, nothing too tall, too short, too small, too big, and you can't go deep, you can't go... we like challenges. We're the only... think about this... what do we do as humans? We make up new challenges to better the last one we just completed. We're crazy like that, right? What we don't wanna do is face threats unprepared. And that's where we need to start language changing here. So, you said demands. What we really should be telling and thinking in our minds and then talking to our kids about is life will demand so many things from you. Right? Now when you're prepared, then you see those demands as challenges and our brain goes, let's do this. If we're unprepared, those same demands become a threat and we try to avoid it, we fight for, we...you know, it rarely ends well when we see something as a threat. Now that brings the question back to us as parents. Are we preparing our kids to take on the demands of life and accomplish the challenges that we believe they can? And this starts with the little things. Those who can be stewards of little can learn to be stewards of much. So when I say I believe they're gonna be the next great generation, people jump... well that sounds awfully big. I say yeah, that is gonna be amazing. They're not there yet. We need to start with some of the little things. Because it's like bricks in the wall. I just don't look at the whole wall, and say wow, look at...where did that come from? That wall was built one brick at a time. So, what are the many little things that we can help prepare our kids to handle so when the big thing shows up, they go, you know what? I've never faced this before, but I've got this backstory of resources here in my life experience. I'm gonna give it a go. I can take on that challenge. So, that's why in the book I call them four challenges, rather than four threats, or four demands. I say, look, we need to teach our kids to take on four challenges that will help guide them through life.W - Alright, tell us. What are those four challenges?J - Okay, first one. Build bridges between the generations. And followed by practice stewardship before leadership. Challenge number three is transform raw talents into valued strengths. And challenge four is to live with purpose.Now certainly, our kids will face more challenges than those, but if we're gonna write a book and focus on four that are really gonna help calibrate, those are the four I chose.W - Alright, tell us about this building bridges between the generations. How can we....I'm going back to that clever, you know, sticky statement, how do we help our kids discover and become all they were created to be? Okay, challenge one, build bridges between the generations. This is gonna help you be the person you were created to be out in life beyond our home. Tell us about that.J - Okay, so, actually, it's kind of funny, but building bridges is challenge two, three, and four. That's the materials we need to build... the mindset is where we need to start with challenge one. So, if we believe we can build bridges between the generations, then we will search for the resources we need to accomplish that task. If we don't think it's doable, we kinda give up from the very beginning. So, we're dealing with really five generations here. There's a few of the silent gen remaining. There are the sweet great grandparents in our lives. We've got the boomers. And then we've got the gen x, and then we got millennials. And then we got gen z. So, your listeners are probably thinking, my kids are millennials and gen z, and they're either early millennials themselves or gen x'ers, or the few boomers. But, like I said, to build a bridge between the generation, we have to say, how far apart are we? And unfortunately, many people focus on the distance that divides us rather than looking for the narrowest space between us. Because I"m just gonna let everybody know, the secret to the story is, you cannot close the gap between the generations. But we can bridge the gap between the generations. To do that effectively, you gotta find the narrow point between where we are and where they are, and we both have to agree, they and we adults, have to agree to build from our respected sides, towards one another. And in the books, I use the apology of the Golden Gate Bridge, and for years that was the unbridgeable distance. And so, you had Morin County in the North, and you had San Francisco in the South, and they couldn't figure out how to bridge the gap. But when somebody thought differently about how do we...what resources do we use to get from here to there and from there to here? The very...once it came upon...yeah, we're gonna use steel and rivets and cable, they also had to begin building from either side. So, we, the older generation, be a lot like Morin county, cause it's up in the North, and it's the seasoned lands. and then down to the south is kinda that crazy San Francisco thing goin' on and... but yet they were willing to make the distance between them bridgeable by working to meet in the middle.So, the very first thing we do is really a mindset thing. So, once we say yes, we can do this, let's agree on a few things that we are gonna need to accomplish this task. Like parent, adults, we're gonna have to redefine what leadership looks like. Because the next generation already has. And so, if we don't agree on what that looks like, then we're not gonna have the right resources. And then you go on to challenge three. We're gonna have to change our language about what talent is, because the world likes talent, but it needs strengths. And then for certainly, for all of us, living with purpose that challenge number four. That brings that meaning to life when we put two feet on the floor every morning and say, I do this with purpose and design.W - I love that. I'm gonna tell you one thing that I was most surprised, as I, again, I'm only a few chapters into this. One of the things I was most surprised is, I thought, oh good, he's gonna give me a manual to help me get my kid to be better. the book was actually for my child. Cause I want him to be prepared for life, and then this is gonna help me...give me the resources to guide him to the life. And while that is the title, and it is the intent, the outcome actually is me changing my perspective. Again, this is not the authoritarian, "because I said so." This is not, "how do I muscle my child to be prepared for college the way I had to be prepared for college. Or to be prepared for life skill the way that I needed to be, but this really has been such a wonderful invitation for me to grow in empathy and to, as you're talking about building the bridge from my side. You know, here I am in Morin county, and I'm going towards the wilder side. With three teens in my house, without saying no, you have to do it exactly my way.And I'm embarrassed to even speak this frankly about myself, but I'm just saying that this is my tendency. Jonathan, you know when I watch... my oldest a seriously talented musician. And he helps lead worship at a couple different churches, and he now has an Instagram account. And all these things are part of his generation. These opportunities have...that he has, are very different than the opportunities that may be creative had in our generation, even growing up in the church. Sure you could take your acoustic guitar and strum along at camp. But, I mean, it's just very different. Production is different. Technology is different. And he's doing things that I never, never had opportunities to do. And it's new and I do think it's exciting, but I still have this tendency that I want him to do it all the way a 45-year-old woman would do it. Rather than the way a 16-year-old young man who grew up with technology would do it. And I'm just feeling more excited about him figuring it out and me encouraging him and supporting him, giving him life skills, yes. But, really, really getting excited about his generation and his opportunities as something that he can own rather than me, something that I'm muscling them to look a certain way. Does that make sense?J - Oh, it totally does. Think about your favorite teacher ever. Were they a sage from the stage telling us what to do, or were they a guide from the side, gently coaxing us in a direction? And, as parents, you know, and you using your example of your own son if you're guiding from the side, versus up high, here and pointing down and giving directions, and do it like I did back in the day, they tune that out really fast. Absolutely fast. What's your son's name?W - That's Caleb.J - Caleb. Okay. So, let's talk about Caleb for a quick second. What instrument does Caleb play? Did you say guitar?W - He does play guitar, yeah.J - So, Caleb is a guitar player. Would you say he's a talented guitar player?W - Yes, he is.J - Okay, so I just totally set you up and you fell for it, hook, line, and sinker. And all the parents listening right now are like, whoa, whoa, what did she say? It wasn't anything bad. Nothing bad at all. But Caleb's not a talented guitar player. You already said it. You said he's a talented musician. Okay, because, there are no such things as talented guitar players, but there's certainly a thing to talented musicians. But Caleb, as a talented musician, can train in guitar. W - Cause when you said, what instrument, I wanted to say, what instrument can't he play?J - Yeah, okay, so there ya go. But you don't just one day, pick up an instrument, piano, guitar, flute, violin, whatever it is, and just, oh my goodness, listen to that guy go! Caleb didn't do that. Caleb had to have a predisposition for the artistic musical side of life, right? And then he picked up an instrument. The first one he picked up, and the second one, and the third one. But he had to train. So this speaks into challenge number three, transform raw talents into valued strengths. So, what you've done, is you've recognized his musical talent, but then you got him training, right? So he has talent. The recurring pattern of thought, feeling, and behavior that can be positively applied. But then you trained him in the process where he's learned a skill or ability to perform a task. That's training. And how much time does he practice?W -Oh, a couple hours a day.J - See? You were right on track here. Talent, training, followed by timing. That's that commitment to practice and patience. And then finally, the fourth component is treasures. That's a stewardship or relationships and reputations and finances and opportunities. So talent, training, timing, treasure, that makes for a strength. And it is for Caleb's strength that he performs in multiple church bands. It's not because of his talent alone, it's the strength he brings. Okay, so have you ever met listeners that, you're gonna love this, have you ever met somebody who's not a talented musician? They don't have that musical... they don't have that musical DNA in them and they try to sing or they try to play an instrument, and everybody sort of cringes and says at least they're giving it a good go?W - A joyful noise.J - Joyful noise. And when they're kids, we say don't judge, and I can only agree with you on that. But, as adults, we laugh at our spouses when like, I say to my wife, oh, and this is a true story by the way... We ran a 5k, not very far. It's only 5, so it can't be very far. And my excuse for not training was, hey, I was an athlete in college. It had been a long time since college. I got out there and sucked wind. It was horrible. I like to have died. I literally thought I was gonna die in a 5k. Because I didn't train. People used to have and still do have athletic tendencies. If you don't train, you don't practice, it doesn't make permanent. So, I think it's amazing what you're doing with Caleb to help him transform raw talents into valued strengths, but if we don't continue to practice it, that strength begins to fade away. And that's why I think this emerging generation is going to do exceptionally well. Is if we can change our language. If we can stop telling them they're good at everything. Find the things they are really pretty darn good at, and even guide them with...in their talents with the training, timing, and treasured stewardship, they will have strengths and we go, that's what I'm talking about.W - It feels like this is the start of so many conversations, and I wanna encourage parents, like, if this felt a little all over the place, it's because we were. Cause there are just so many good conversations to be had, but what I love about guiding the next generation to becoming the next generation is, you don't get to have the conversations with us. Jonathan Catherman is setting you up to have these conversations with your kids. As you change your language, you're gonna have common footing because they're gonna be learning that language too, and he's gonna speak truth into our lives, definitely. Like, this idea of, we don't wanna be a sage from the stage, we wanna be a guide from the side. And I think that we have the tendency, many of us, to be that sage from the stage. We have taken the role as being the parent. But, as the kids get older, our job is less upfront with lectures and more on the side with questions. And saying, oh, you're good at that. Or you enjoy that. Or, hmm, you didn't have to work that hard. Are you enjoying that? Would you like to find more opportunities to do more of that? I bet we could find more things online. And there's just so many... chapter after chapter. Great conversation starters to have with your kids. You know, over this last year as I've been doing these podcasts, that I do a lot of confessions, you know. I'm doing this wrong. Because I think that when we can pinpoint what we're doing wrong, we can...there's a hope that we can do something right. And I think that these resources can help us change our language, change our inner dialogue, foster more empathy, and foster excitement over, not just our individual children's lives, but our generation. the generation to come. And I'm ready to get more excited for the benefit for my kids. And catch a vision of what their generation is becoming.So, thank you, Jonathan, for lighting that flame in me and hopefully in some of our listeners today. If there's one last thought you could send us off with, what would it be? And then would you transition into just praying for us as you say goodbye?J - Sure. A final thought. May your ceiling be your children's floor. And, but, at the same time, you don't have to elevate them to get there. That's part of their responsibility. But that foundation has been set and the level we live on is already established. May we see our kid's lives be better than our own because we help them climb to that next level, and may our ceiling be their floor. So I just pray a blessing on your families and so in that thought, let me enter into actual prayer. Because coming before the Lord...there's no greater place and there's no greater position than humbling presenting ourselves before the Lord, so. Let's pray now together.Heavenly Father, it is a joy to talk to parents who want the very best for their children and want to do the very best that they know how. And we recognize that we are, we're only human. And that means, we're...sometimes we get it right, and sometimes we get it wrong. May we be humble enough to recognize that when we seek Your Face, when we seek Your Guidance, as I pray with my boys, direction, protection, every day. When we seek those things that we will find and when we find, we can act, and when we act, we can build. And so, I pray a blessing, Lord, on each family member who's listening right now, that our children become better than we, not because we put them there, but because they have aspiration to be there. And Lord, may we pray blessings on them every single day. Thank you for these parents, thank you for their guidance, we love you Lord. We love each other. In Jesus Name. Amen.W - Such a good conversation. Thank you very much, Jonathan, there is a Sunday where i was sitting in church, and my son was sitting with me. He wasn't up there leading worship. But, there was... the main worship leader was upfront in a pool of light, and with his matching team. Then his matching outfit and all smiley and singing and he just looked like, you know, he was part of a boy band from the 80s. He was kinda like perfect looking. And then there was this guy in the background who had his head down and he was filling in with all the excellent musicianship. And made it really sound good musically. But he was outside of that pool of light. And his head was down and he wasn't looking up, showing his matching tee and his matching hair and his matching outfit. and I realized in that moment, that that's my Caleb in the background. Not in the foreground, but in the background. And I leaned over and I said, Caleb if you were up there, which one would you be? And he said, well of course, like, it wasn't even a thought. He was, of course, I'm that guy. That's what I'm good at. And I think that in this season of life right now, as I mentioned before, here we are as their teachers. But I think we need to be learners. less talking from the stage. More watching. more encouraging them. And I love that you said... I mean, I've heard before the may our ceiling be their floor. I heard that before. But the fact that you're saying, it's not our job to elevate them. They must have the aspiration to go and stand upon it and keep climbing. And I wanna be more thoughtful to watch and to cheer and to give them the, you can do it message, rather than how to do it message. Thank you so much for an encouraging time for me. And we'll look forward to getting to know you better in the pages of your book. So, thank you.J - Thank you, Wendy. I really appreciate it.Wendy - Thank you for joining us this week on the Homeschool Solutions Show. As always, you can find show notes and links to all the resources mentioned at Homeschooling.mom. I hope you'll take a moment to subscribe to the podcast and if it was especially meaningful to you, share it with your friends via email or social media. This is just another way we can all encourage and love and support one another. Speaking of love and support, we are so grateful for the support of our sponsors. Have you joined us at one of the Great Homeschool Conventions? The Great Homeschool Conventions are the homeschooling events of the year. Offering outstanding speakers, hundreds of workshops, covering today's top parenting and homeschooling topics. And the largest homeschool curriculum exhibit halls in the US. Find out more at GreatHomeschoolConventions.com. I hope to see you there.But in the meantime, let's gather together again here on the podcast next week.


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