Muhammad Ali Speaks to Homeschoolers

49 years ago today, Muhammad Ali (known at that time as Cassius Clay) fought his first professional boxing match, winning in six rounds. October 29, 1960 marked the beginning of a remarkable career for a fighter whose self-proclaimed strategy came to be known as “float like a butterfly, sting like a bee.”


Interestingly, that’s not TOO FAR off from Jesus’ words in Mt. 10:16 when He said, “I am sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves.”

They certainly aren’t word for word paraphrases but there is a distinct similarity. Whether you think of it as “innocent as doves” or “floating like a butterfly” the imagery brings to mind the thought of treading lightly, moving softly, causing no harm and staying just above the ruckus.

And whether you think of it as being “wise (or shrewd) as a serpent (or snake)” or “stinging like a bee” the imagery again overlaps a bit, suggesting a wary creature that is capable of defense when necessary, moving with deliberate purpose and cunning at times.

If we’re to be effective homeschoolers we need to take the words of Jesus to heart- or perhaps lay hold of Muhammad Ali’s imagery if it leaves a more vivid impression. We need to move harmlessly and peaceably through the world around us which is antagonistic toward Christian ideals and objectives. But at the same time we need to be wise or even cunning- certainly not naive’. We need to strike quickly and effectively at anything which seeks to destroy our privilege as parents to teach our own children.

Whether that happens in a ballot booth, or in a discussion with a local public educator we need to be peaceable as doves or butterflies until our freedoms are threatened- then we need to be ALL BUSINESS!


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