Monday, February 4, 2013

Book Review: Journeys to Mother Love



Journeys to Mother Love, a compilation by Catherine Lawton, tells the stories of mothers of all ages, from all walks of life, in their own voices. But these women have faced demons from the past and challenges of the present by opening themselves to God’s grace. They tell their stories of hurt and healing to guide others down similar paths to freedom and forgiveness.

If you felt neglected as a child, suffered abuse of one sort or another or had to deal with a complicated mother/daughter relationship, the book is for you. I plan to pass my copy on to someone whose life today is complicated by past experiences. I could especially relate to one woman’s story about a mother with Alzheimer’s because I have an older sister with serious memory loss, but I recognized issues from my own life in most every story.

Each chapter ends with a short bio and photo of the author, and it was interesting to note how negative experiences can turn into ministries. All the women testify to the faithfulness of God regardless of circumstances and offer inspirational reading at its best.

Friday, February 1, 2013

The God of All Seasons


Did you know that when toothpaste was first invented, it was a tough sell. People simply did not see the need for it, so they didn’t buy it. Then some ingenious person added a foaming element and something that gave your mouth a tingly, clean feel after brushing your teeth. With that, everyone started using toothpaste.* And it’s been a good thing, has it not?

Just as people failed to appreciate toothpaste, I sometimes think we fail to appreciate God. Oh we come to church on Sunday, but we may not bother developing a relationship with Him during the week because we fail to see a need for Him. We’re doing just fine on our own.

Why do we need God? We need God to face the choices, challenges and changes of life.

In our youth, we especially need God’s guidance to make wise choices; after all, our choices drastically affect who we become. We can choose to read God’s word and pray on a daily basis—or not. We can choose to obey our parents and our teachers—or not. Whenever we choose to do the right thing, our morality muscle is strengthened. As we mature we choose our friends, our life partners, our occupations. As Christians, God has a say in all this; it is to our benefit to seek His direction.

In midlife, we need God to face our challenges. Perhaps we feel weary, sandwiched between children and aging parents. We may advance in our careers--or we may lose our jobs. Our marriages may develop speed bumps. We face the challenges of living with integrity, dealing with weaknesses no one knows about, failing to conform our lives to the image of Christ as we would like. The greatest challenge we face may be finding time for God, because if we find time for God, He can help us with every challenge. He never ceases to encourage me during my devotional time.

During our senior years, we need God to face changes: changes in communication, physical changes, changes in relationships as people die or move away, changes in how we use our time. We used to be busy with work. What will we do now? Pursue new hobbies? Explore new avenues of Christian service? Read the Bible and pray more?

Choices, challenges and changes may be difficult, but they are not impossible to handle. God does not change, and He is well able to supply grace for us to adapt to a changing age and culture--if we maintain our walk with Him. After all, we are disciples. How are you doing? How am I doing? Do you need God’s help for a choice, a challenge or a change? Let’s look to him as regularly as we brush our teeth.

I just updated our schedule at www.friendsoftheheart.us; check it out for available dates for the upcoming year. We’ve already scheduled a Mother-Daughter event for 2014. If we’ve ministered at your church, we’d love to return. If you’ve never met us, we’d love to meet you and share God’s love with you through drama, testimony and songs (by Kim). Feel free to pass this blog along to someone who might be encouraged by reading it. If you’re receiving this by e-mail, go to www.shirleybrosius.blogspot.com to leave a comment. I’d love to hear from you.

*From The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg.