22 September 2019

What does "Homegrown" mean?

I wonder what comes to your mind when you hear the word ‘homegrown’. For me, it’s images of a happy family digging in the garden. Siblings sharing tools and working together to dig, plant and weed, singing as they go. Then picking their homegrown, organic produce, presenting it as a Pinterest-worthy feast and eating it. All without a single complaint. It’s a lovely picture but bears almost no resemblance to my actual day-to-day life. I'm usually rushing between work, home and school drop offs and shoving something in the oven at the end of the day. I then watch as my children painstakingly remove anything that resembles a vegetable.

But what if homegrown, was just about whatever we were growing in our homes and I'm not talking houseplants here! Our homes all look different, but they are usually a place where our children will grow in all sorts of ways. There are so many things that I want to grow in my children in their time at home. I want them to grow physically and gain strength and coordination and balance. I want them to grow mentally so they can read and write well. It's also important to me that they grow in character so that they are wise, empathetic and resilient. Top of my list though, is that I want them to grow spiritually. I want them to meet and know God for themselves and develop a two way thriving relationship with them. As I  lead the children’s ministry in my church, my greatest desire is to equip and encourage the parents there, to help their children do the same. None of us have that picture perfect image of home. But, we all have opportunities amidst the chaos of everyday life to help our children grow.

If you’re not sure where to start or would love some more ideas and inspiration, put the Homegrown conference is in your diary. The daytime is for those with a role equipping others and the evening session is for parents and carers. It’s designed to fit in a school day  and has time built in for processing, whether that’s through journalling or discussion in person or online.

You can watch on your own or join with others. Why not host a little gathering in your home or church so that you can do this together? We often gain so much from being able to talk to others about what we’re learning and the new ideas that are forming. See you there!

Anna Hawken, National Parenting for Faith Coordinator

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