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We Went West and Came Back Rejoicing

October 15, 2004

Everywhere we went it felt like a reunion. We met so many absolutely delightful Saints of God.
I don’t remember enjoying a set of Seminars as much as I did our recent trip out West, touring Idaho, Washington, Oregon, and California. I have preached the gospel out that way from time to time, but have never done a Child Training and Family Seminar. Frankly, we didn’t know how the “liberal” West would receive this “hillbilly” entourage. We were wonderfully surprised to find overflowing crowds filled with enthusiasm, and ready to laugh, cry, and celebrate the blessings they have received from our God.
I never cease to be amazed at how much those of us who know God through Jesus Christ have in common. It is as though we are all family, have known each other all our lives, but just haven’t had a chance to visit in the last year or so. Everywhere we went, it felt like a reunion. We met so many absolutely delightful Saints of God. We estimated that in the nine Seminars there were about 6,000 in attendance. The children were fabulous. They were so full of joy and hope—well-trained. I love meeting the kids. It strengthens me—gives me courage to go on. I have a collection of pictures they drew for me, and I came home with a dozen portraits. My office walls now look like a first-grade art class.
The kids inspire me and give me hope for America. Without the homeschooling movement and the revival of family nurturing that is ever growing in America, the rest of the country would scare me to death. I would be looking for a sparsely populated foreign country in which to establish a new Christian colony where we could once again build religious and social freedom. The people I met out West, and those like them in every state of the Union, are the only reason God does not send us the way of Sodom and Gomorrah, under a hail of fire and brimstone. While the public schools are systematically destroying the children of America, there are millions of children now being homeschooled and nurtured by godly parents imparting a Christian culture.
We met hundreds of young couples just starting out, many of whom were homeschooled themselves, who are now planning their own families and wanting to arm themselves with knowledge before they have children. They will have an advantage over their parents’ generation, for they have been raised in a manner that will allow them to start off with a proper worldview, whereas most of us pioneers in homeschooling, products of the public schools, have had to devote a good deal of our energies to our own Christian walk.
The sweet fruit is now bearing fruit. We are just beginning this second generation, and they will do what we pioneers have longed for—reestablish Christian communities in a hostile culture. No doubt, they will be surrounded by a world going to hell as fast as Hollywood and the Supreme Court can take them, but the second-generation homeschoolers will shine all the more and bring great glory to God. Blessed are the overcomers, for they will eat from the tree of life. “I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth.”

I attended your seminar in Eugene, OR. I thoroughly enjoyed it. I genuinely want to change the way I parent my children. They attended the seminar also and said that they want to change some things also. That surprised me.

Thank you for touring the West Coast!

Thank you sincerely for making the trek to California… land of the granola people (any of us who are not flakes or fruits, are nuts!) I can’t begin to tell you how much you mean to us. It has been so rare for us to find those older blessed saints who can really mentor us in the way we should go, as saints ourselves, as parents, and as pilgrims. Thank you for walking a little while with us. I know it’s not about you, and I know it’s not about me. I thank God for the means he uses to get at our hearts.

I attended your seminar in Orange, California and thoroughly enjoyed it.

We were so delighted to meet the Pearls in person this month in Renton, WA. Thank you and your family for traveling so far to share God’s plan for training up our children.
Robert and Amy

Saw you in Rohnert Park, CA. Refreshingly simple, yet so effectively obscured by the cultural haze in which we find ourselves existing. Thank you. Really. My wife and I (and by default, our children also) have been blessed by your message and ministry.

Dear Pearls,
Thank you for coming to Oregon to teach. We need you—others may want you to come and teach them, but here, we need you. My husband and I were so strengthened, and a deeper vision for our family was set in our hearts (masters of joy).
Your teaching is so clear; there was none of this “Well, I’m not sure…” stuff. It made it really special that you came out to talk with people. Some of these preachers like to come out on a white cloud, high and lifted up.
Our kids, 14, 12, and 9, really enjoyed it. My 9-year-old Ezra said, “I’d like to go to Mr. Pearl’s house so he can train me to throw knifes. I’d pay him for his time.”
I know you won’t reward begging. How about pleading? Please come back as soon as possible.
Bob, Brenda, Cassie, Levi, Ezra

Dear Pearls,
I just want to let you know what a blessing your ministry has been to my family, and what an awesome instrument of the Lord your family has been. I recently went to your seminar here in Orange, California, and was blessed to meet Shoshanna [youngest Pearl daughter]. Shoshanna exhorted me to continue to walk in joy regardless of the struggles I have in trying to provide for and nurture a family. I do have much reason to rejoice. God has delivered me from not only the bondage of my sin, but also much of the consequences of my sin. How merciful is our God! I am writing, not with a question, but to say “thank you” to No Greater Joy Ministries and, thank you, Shoshanna for your encouragement. You are truly the fruit of your parents’ teaching.

Dear Mr. & Mrs. Pearl,
We recently drove to Aloha, Oregon to hear you speak in person. It was a long drive (just ask the kids), but well worth it, not because we heard anything new, on the contrary, we have all of your child-training, marriage, and family relationships materials. What I wanted to thank you for is letting me finally see and understand joy! I have read and heard, but now I have seen! When Debi came up on the platform to answer a question about homeschooling, she beamed! She smiled, and that whole big sanctuary lit up at the radiance from her eyes and smile! I finally understood. Thanks for that.
Thanks also for your ministry. It has made such a difference in our lives. We got a hold of your newsletter a few years ago. At the time, we were struggling to live what we saw in the Bible. Our marriage had been a very scary thing before we got saved, and was still not good years later. The usual stuff interfered; we were pressured to be at church all the time, and I was expected to teach Sunday School, be at or teach the ladies’ Bible studies every week, have our kids at every activity—nobody told us that a woman could stay at home and serve her family and still be godly. I was told to pray for my not-very-spiritual husband to be the leader of our home. I was told to put my infant on a feeding schedule and when I wouldn’t, was told how I was going to mess up my marriage by nursing my baby at night. They also told me how I should get out of the house and pursue some ministry of my own so I wouldn’t be wasting the talents the Lord gave me, etc.
I’m sure you have heard it all before—I guess I just wanted you to know that there is another couple, who, in spite of the modern beliefs of today’s “Christian” culture, live a contented and wonderful life in Jesus! (I read the “Jezebel [Profile]” article Debi wrote and about fell over! I made copies and gave it to every woman I could get to take it!) I love my husband, and he is now the spiritual leader of our home. I no longer teach or attend ladies’ Bible studies, which was to the detriment of my family; our kids are well-trained and are a pleasure to be around.
When we have applied what you said about child-training, women’s roles as wives and mothers, marriage, homeschooling, and even nutrition, the results and fruit born from renewed thinking and changed living has been beautiful. We live creative and different lives. We are different from most all the other families we know. No, I don’t wear long denim dresses; we do not drive a 15-passenger car, and I hardly ever bake home-made wheat bread (and I have never used a grinder to make my own flour – gasp!). But, when my husband goes to work, he is asked sometimes by troubled men the “secret” of our great marriage. He’s asked how his wife manages to homeschool and still be cheerful, and how we manage to have such nice kids. When one of the men has problems in his marriage (it happens a lot in the fire department), my husband is usually the one he goes to. He’s honest and approachable, and they know he loves Jesus, but he’s not religious and pious, like some other Christians they work with or know. My husband, whom I complained about, disrespected, and was bitter toward, has been changed by my love, respect, and reverence. He really does minister to other men casually—and weekly now. As Mr. Pearl would say, “Don’t be amazed at what God can do.”

Dear Pearls,
I’ve enjoyed the newsletter and the books and tapes I’ve ordered. You are a couple who don’t sugarcoat anything and really tell it like the Bible says…very refreshing! Your training issues are amazing and have changed our lives…I’m not angry anymore, thanks to your “Sin No More” tapes – wow – I do not struggle with anger anymore, because Christ died for that issue I have had…incredible and yet just like the scripture says, “My Burden Is Light…” I could go on and on, but you get the point.

Dear Mr. and Mrs. Pearl,
I have 4 children, ages 5, 4, 2, and a newborn. I try to give out Gospel tracts everywhere I go. My 5- and 4-year-olds have picked up the habit also. I love it, because many times people will say, “No, thank you.” The most important thing I believe they learn from this is how to deal with rejection. I believe that had I been a soul winner earlier, many of my youth problems would have been solved just by learning how to deal with rejection. Many teenagers get suckered into peer pressure because they don’t want to get rejected. Now, my kids just plainly say, “Mom, she wouldn’t take one. I guess she wants to go to Hell. But I know Jesus wants me to keep on giving them to people and never stop.” They push me to pass out tracts.

Michael Pearl

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