Saturday, October 3, 2015

How Will You Afford College for Your Children?

People have a lot of questions about large families, and more often than not they tend to focus on money and finances. I think that says a lot about our world right there, don't you?

One question in particular that so often gets asked is:

"How will you afford to send your children to college/university?"

While I can't answer this question for all large families (believe it or not, not all large families share the same views) I can share our views on this.

Let me start by asking some questions:

  • What is the reason for your child to attend college/university?
  • What is your goal for your child's future?
  • What is God's will for your child's future?
  • Do those match up?

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.
Romans 12:2

Our hope for our children is that they will grow in a relationship with God, so that they might understand His will for their life, and pursue that purpose with all their heart.
We pray that they will follow where HE leads them, not where the world says they should go or meet the milestones the world says they must meet in order to be successful in the world.

For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.
Jeremiah 29:11

God has plans for each of us. The verse does not say, I know the plans you have for yourself. God has plans to give us a future and a hope, and to make that happen we should follow His will and not our own.

"But what if God's will is for your child to become a doctor or something that requires an expensive education?"

Let's be realistic. For many of our children, following God's will, will not lead to a post secondary education. Why? Because our goal in life is not to pursue money and worldly things. 1 Timothy 6:10, Matthew 6:24, 1 John 2:15-16. This is not to say they can't be educated, or learn new things. There are apprenticeships, on the job training, and anything you want to learn about these days can be found free online if you feel that's where God is leading. Just remember, education isn't the same as wisdom.

We are drowning in information, 
while starving for wisdom.
                                     E.O. Wilson

That being said, what if your child really is destined to be a doctor? I have an 8 year old whose been reading college anatomy books the past couple years, which makes this a very likely possibility.

Let me ask you this before answering:

  • Who is your God?
  • What is He capable of?
  • What does the Bible say about His provision?
  • Do you believe if God has a plan for your life that He won't give you the tools needed to do His work?  
If post-secondary education is God's will for your child there are scholarships and bursaries for this exact purpose.
We also believe that by the time a child is ready for that step, they are not a child anymore. When they are ready to pursue Gods will for their life, and they are at an age to be responsible and considered an adult they also have the responsibility to find their own way in life to achieve those goals. Just remember what the Bible says about debt, and how many have gone thousands into debt for their education only to get a job doing something that never required that education in the first place.

Let me leave your with some final questions:

  • Are your views about post-secondary education yours or Gods?
  • Do your views match up with your friends and neighbours, or with Gods?
  • Do you have a hard time standing out and being different than everyone else?
  • What is Gods will for your life?

12 And further, by these, my son, be admonished: of making many books there is no end; and much study is a weariness of the flesh. 13 Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.
Ecclesiastes 12:12-13

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