Friday, February 4, 2011
Book Club: Ministry of Motherhood: Intro
Did you get a chance to read the introduction? What did you think?
I loved that we were able to get some background on the author and see some of her own thoughts in developing this book. And I'm very excited to see how so much of her philosophy has developed out of Christ's own modeling. This is a model that we've long since held in high regard in the church, but in day to day life can become lost. Especially when you're dealing with small children.
Clarkson presents the acronym GIFTS in this chapter as well: grace, inspiration, faith, training, service. And I'll wholly confess that grace is where I'm probably the most lacking. At the end of the day, I often find myself needing to be reminded that they are still young and still growing.
We'll be following the basic 6 week model for reading through this book. So I'll be using some of Clarkson's discussion questions, along with a few of my own. Let's jump in.
1. What purpose do you think God had in mind when he designed the role of mother? Have you ever specifically considered that, in becoming a mother, you have actually been called to a ministry? In what way does that concept change how you think about your role?
I do think that God created mothers to be teachers. We're often nurturing and patient (to a degree) and our children desire to emulate our behavior from a very young age. I've always felt that I didn't want to mother mediocrely, but have I considered it a ministry? I don't know. Our current culture puts such a high premium on results. And parenthood is anything, but measurable.
2. Read Psalm 127: 3--if possible, in more than one translation. What does this verse imply about the ministry of motherhood?
Sons are a heritage from the Lord; children are a reward from him.
I think this verse is just a great reminder that we're stewards of these children. They've been given to us to raise up, to train. They are a blessing and a gift from God.
3. Proverbs 31:10-31 paints a vivid portrait of the life of a godly woman. Describe what a Proverbs 31 life might look like in modern context. What part of this description did you find particularly inspiring? What areas pose a challenge for you? How do you think these reactions relate to your ministry as a mother?
4. Read Proverbs 14:1. In what specific ways can a woman in this day and age build her house or tear it down? If possible, give examples from your own observation or experience. Then list four specific ways you want to build your house by ministering to your children and making disciples of them.
The wise woman builds her house but with her own hands the foolish own tears hers down.
Words can mean so much. We as woman have the power to build up our homes or to tear them down simply by the words we speak. Or even the words we don't speak. Many marriages have been destroyed by two people who simply tore each other apart with their words.
The same goes for motherhood. Our young children look to us for guidance. There's a deep and longing trust inant in them to trust us to guide and teach them. I know personally that my struggle with my tongue is a day to day retraining and a fight. Being aware of that is my greatest weapon.
Four ways I want to build my house:
Spending specific one on one time with each of my kids weekly.
Praying for my kids and for their future sibling relationship daily
Include my children in service and ministry opportunities as available
Opening my relationship with Christ up so they can see a healthy model
5. Write out a plan for ministering to your children using the acronym GIFTS. List at least one goal for each letter.
So what was your take away from this section of the book? What things hit you anew or reconfirmed your beliefs? What challenge can you take away from the Introduction?
We'll be reading chapters 1-2 for Tuesday, Feb 8th. Until then, Happy Reading!