I read it when I was 10 years old, (you hear the story in my podcast) and it has left and impact for life. Consequently, I read it and discussed it with my children and it became one of their favorites. Enjoy!
What you believe about who God is, then, becomes the platform for your behavior, your values, the grid through which you see life. When you ponder God and cultivate a personal theology, it will influence what you pass on as a legacy to your children as your life messages of integrity.
Nathan is my out of the box, adventurer, story-formed son who fell in love with hero tales. We have long talks about how much he was inspired by the books that captured his imagination and gave him scope to imagine himself as a hero in his own story. We had so much fun today talking about some of his favorite books and why they still live in his mind today.
I was not a perfect mom and rarely in one year accomplished all my educational goals with my children. But almost every day, we had devotions and read-alouds--sometimes at night, sometimes in the morning, sometimes at tea times, but I kept baskets of books everywhere--in every room, in the bathrooms, in their bedrooms. And each year on birthdays and Christmas and other holidays, they all received books as gifts and I helped each of them build their own libraries.
Motherhood came upon me by surprise when I was almost 32 years old. Then I had 3 children in less than 5 years and was hopelessly out of control of my time—and I didn’t know that was to be expected. I kept looking for books that would make it all easier, manageable, give me order and predictability in my life. But finally, God said, “What if the problem with your frustration is you? Children have had needs through all generations but when. mamas lived into the season of life with littles, they found more joy and peace.”
I wish I could invite all of you, my friends, into my home, for a warm meal, a friendship conversation where I could listen to what is on your heart, a place to restore your soul— and to spoil you just a little. Hospitality, the tender care, attention, love and attending to the needs of others is a way we use our place to give others welcome. After such a wearying 3 months, many are in need of our invitation. You are probably in need of it yourself. Our homes can give life where hearts can find comfort, welcome, belonging if we use our them to invite those who need care Into a place we have prepared as a haven for them.
Today, as I was reading and praying for our world, my friends and all that is going on, I was reminded of a profound question that an educated, earnest lawyer asked Jesus, “Who is my neighbor.”
Forty-six years ago, I went into full time Christian ministry--can. you believe it? And. through these years, I have experienced so many times of trials in history and personally, as well as deep joys. But as I learned to walk one step at a time, learn to trust God one day at a time, learned to put aside bitterness and cynicism, I could eventually always see the grace, love and goodness of God, and learned to stretch towards HIs light and love. You might enjoy my podcast as I share more about this.
Whether as a mother training the character of children, filling their minds with excellent writers, artists, thinkers, or as a woman being a steward of every aspect of her life, one can only become excellent by stretching, determining to obey His still small voice and then using every resource to pursue bringing His light and imprint upon this world.
Justice has been a study of mine. through the days. Jesus is a God of just love—equitable generosity and care for all people, all created in His image. Most of all, though, as. Christ followers, we are to exhibit Him in every relationship. He humbled himself to give us everything. We owe all people His love and grace and friendship. And so choosing to pass on racism as a legacy of our lives is not acceptable. if we have given our lives to serve Jesus. Yet we do see hate, small mindedness, violence everywhere.
Teen years are the making of the child into an adult and the humbling of the parent who realizes they never were in control of their children! But it also makes for forming great adult friendships that will give back to you the rest of their lives. Take heart and a deep breath and expect to see God's grace and provision in new ways--and above all, don't let it get you down. It is a normal process for all of history--the reason Solomon wrote Proverbs to teens, and the means through which many adults become more humble and compassionate for others.
I hope you will enjoy the second podcast with Clay and me sharing our thoughts about what we have learned about parenting to reach the hearts of our own four, who love us and love the Lord—all by His grace. We are always putting in something in their lives—we invest thorough the seasons:
Many of you who have read our books know that Clay and I are very relationship-based in our approach to children. As we looked to Christ for His model in how He reached the hearts of his disciples, so we wanted to develop a close and deep with ours. Yet, I think because every parent wants to do everything right, they often become susceptible to whatever parenting book they get their hands on first, seeking to find a formula for disciplining children.
Often, my children were doubting God, they were doubting because it didn't seem like He was answering prayer, or because other Christians had hurt or disappointed our family or acted without integrity or one of their friends had fallen from faith or adopted an immoral lifestyle. There are many reasons in a world full of temptation, but I think staying close, communicating love, affirming and understanding their questions and speaking forward into their lives is helpful. And of course, pray, pray, pray!
There is darkness in our world, discouragement, confusion. Yes, this is a really crazy time and we are not living as healthy as God intended us to—without regular contact with community, family, friends, church, restaurants, trying to meet all of our own needs alone without the normal interaction of those who used to be our support system. But there is still beauty, people we can love and be loved by, things to laugh at, and places where we still see goodness and God’s lifegiving creativity in our daily lives.
Do you ever feel like just when you are going to have a good day, someone spills something, argues, gets a fever when you were looking forward to going outside? Part of the challenge of life is learning to celebrate the joyful times and learning to live in grace through the times when life is just hard to tame.
How are you? Most of “my people” are getting restless and cranky and drained to their toes.
In now world is this normal life. The seclusion from church, friends, family and normal activity is truly unhealthy at the heart of it. We were made for relationship, work, fun, faith inspiration and ways to have a break once in a while—whatever that means to you.
A mother, living well in her God-ordained role, is of great beauty and inestimable value to the future history of any generation. Her impact is irreplaceable and necessary to the spiritual formation of children who will be the future adults of the next generation. Fun, comfort, humor, graciousness, spiritual passion, compassion for the lost, hospitality, chores, meals, training, life-giving words, hours and hours of listening and playing and praying and reading—all are parts of the mosaic which go into the process of soul development.
We know we are called to follow Christ, to take His message to the world, to raise our children to heed Jesus' call. But sometimes I think we fail to consider that following the Lord might mean leaving behind the ordinary and the familiar. It means exchanging a temporal view of life for an eternal goal. And this may mean leaving behind things we really care about--involvements and pursuits that seem important and worthwhile but may not be God's best for us.
A year ago, my wonderful friend, Nicole, NPT, created a program called "30 Days of Whole Living". I know that stress is slowing me down in my own ideals and practices. I thought it would be encouraging to all of us to talk about a healthy lifestyle today. Nicole has a plan, "7 Days of Whole Living", that helps women make a plan that fits into their lives for healthy rhythms and practices..
Today, we talked about her plan for whole living and what we both do to try to keep ourselves as healthy and strong as possible as a rhythm of life, all the time, every day. The purpose of her own program is to help women and moms, especially, learn different practices of self-care or what both of us call, “Whole. Living”
Drawing upon Scripture and upon his own experience learning from his friend and mentor Eugene Peterson, Grothe shows how our lives can be secured by the resource that will keep us from collapsing under the onslaught of the difficulties of life. Wisdom is available to us. It takes work to pursue it. Chasing Wisdom reveals how.
We had a grand time in our interview and I was so very encouraged. I know you will be so inspired by his message.
Today, I talked with my dear friend, Holly Packiam. Holly serves as the Pastor of Parenting Ministries at New Life Downtown, and brings her experience as a mother and her training as a counselor to the subject of loss. She shared how this season of being in isolation reminds her of when her kids were 7 and under and it felt impossible to go anywhere, get anything done, or see anyone outside of her family.
I hope you will enjoy the podcast today. Greatness is shaped in the hidden moments of life, the repeated rhythms over and over again that shape a life of memories and values in the hearts and minds of our children.
I hope you’ll enjoy our podcast today, as we discuss ways to find peace in the midst of stressful times!