Tuesday, February 12, 2013

two for review

Okay, for the one of you who reads this blog, I already told you some about this book, but I will post more here....
When I originally posted about the books I was going to read, this book did not make the list because it had been on back order.  It is called "Desperate, Hope for the Mom Who Needs to Breathe".

  What drew me to this book was two things, the co-author is Sally Clarkson and I have some of her other stuff and I think she is "solid" based on what I have read, secondly, I have had moments of desperation in my job of being a mommy and thought that this book might offer some perspective for me.  

Let me say, I am no biblical scholar nor am I a literary guru but, I know what I know and I know that this book CAN BE dangerous if it gets into the hand of one who is unable to clearly process at the point of reading.  I do not say that to sound haughty or holier than thou, I say it because I found myself at a few points in the book, thinking, I need to put this book down, or at least share with Kevin what I am reading because I am NOT thinking clearly and this book is feeding that wrong thinking.  I am not blaming the book or the author, I am just sharing my experience.

For me, what should have been a dead give away is that the preface is written by Ann Voskamp, author of another book that I read that is considered in "my circle" to be highly offensive and questionable.  

In all fairness, the book is "raw"...I mean the author, Sarah Mae, is very real and open about her depression, her struggles with motherhood, her lack of desire to serve her kids or husband....all those things are fine....you are lying if you say you have never struggled with any of these areas, BUT......you MUST stop and focus on what is true.  What I did like about the book is the mentor/mentee format....Sarah Mae at the beginning of each chapter will write an email snippet to Sally Clarkson and then Sally will respond to her with another little snippet.  EX:  Dear Sally, I am really struggling being a mom today.  I feel overwhelmed and underprepared.  What if I fail my kids?  I am so scared of messing up.  Can I really do this motherhood thing well?......Love Sarah Mae...
Dear Friend,  Almost all mothers I know started out overwhelmed and eventually found their sea legs and began to create rhythm in their lives.....Fondly, Sally

This back and forth part was good to me, it sort of set the tone for the chapter and then in each chapter, Sarah Mae would write and then Sally Clarkson would respond or add to what she had written.  In my opinion, Sarah Mae was the emotional writer and Sally Clarkson was the down to earth go to scripture responder.....again, all this is fine to me

.  I guess where I began to struggle was just the CONSTANT negativity about motherhood and how hard it is and how much of a struggle it is....I dont know, I was hoping that this would be a book that I could give to other new moms, but right now, I don't think it is.  I don't think that moms who are desperate need to necessarily read about other moms who are desperate.....misery loves company!  I think it is good that this author was so open and so willing to share but the hope that I got came from Sally Clarkson's thoughts.....

Here also are some "issues" I had with the book...Chapter 8 "ESCAPING"
This chapter addresses addiction to the internet or things like it..Sarah Mae handles it well when she says " We've got to get real.  It's helpful to have a friend or husband or a counselor to confess to."  "We need to be able to acknowledge that we like our addiction, it feel good it's easier than life and we want to keep doing it."  Here is where I struggle....she then goes on to say "I have found God to be extremely faithful when we cry out with a pure heart."  (stop....we 1.  Don't know our heart...Jeremiah 17:9 and 2.  This side of heaven even our best motives and actions are filthy rags)....Then she says, " A pure heart is not one that is unmarred by sin; having purity of heart means you want to do the right thing, crying out to God and His truth and for help."  I don't agree with her on this pure heart thing....

Also, to me, she just kept going on and on about how as moms, we must take time to do nice things for ourselves because we deserve a beautiful life.  I don't know about you, but my life is often less than beautiful but that is what is promised for the believer.

I don't know, maybe I have become one of those people that I didn't want to become, but more and more, I am seeing that even in "christian circles" you have to be soooo careful about what you put before your eyes.  Maybe I am just more sensitive about it because of my stage of life.  But, I am watching young moms say some of the same things that are being said in this book.. This is so "mundane"....this job is taking the place of my other dreams, this is not what I thought it would be....I am burdened by it.  Do I struggle?  YOU BET!!!!  Just ask me, I will tell you!  Do I want to throw in the towel?  Often!  But, I do know and believe and have claimed that He Who BEGAN a good work in me WILL complete it in the day of Christ Jesus and my HOPE is built on JESUS CHRIST alone!! 
Okay, I am done with this one!  ; )

The other one that I read, VIRTUES OF FAMILY LIFE....William J. Bennett

Good book, good read....not so much for Gracelyn (Which was my plan....to read it with her) she is a bit too young and there are a few more mature themes in the book...but, one that I will read with her in the future!

Friday, February 1, 2013

First Review

Okay, here are MY thoughts on the first book I have read this year:

"Fierce Women" The Power of a Soft Warrior  by Kimberly Wagner

First let me say that I love this book because my dear friend gave it to me.  The book was fine.  To me, there was no "new material" for me....but I praise God for that, because I am well taught at my church.  Now, I do not always apply all that I learn but, I am blessed.  This book was an easy read.  There were some good points to be taken and there were some thought provoking statements made.  One thing that I did like was at the end of every chapter, there is a Heart Issues section where the reader is challenged to think in a biblical way about certain issues.  

Those that know me well might laugh at this coming from ME, but, I did struggle with the emotion that she seemed to be writing with.  I have had the pleasure of meeting this author and I have been in several settings with her so, I know this to be true to her character but for me, it was over the top at times.  Also, some of the terminology was.....hmmm how do I say it?  Let me give an example...."Whippin my man into shape"....  The critiques are personal to me....these thing may not bother anyone else.  

Here is one thing though, that I did take away.  I have never seen these acronyms before and I like them;

APPRECIATION (how to love your husband well)
Admire and Affirm
Put yourself in his skin
Pray like you mean it
Release your inner prisoner
Encourage his leadership
Invest in him
Accept him
Intimate connections 
Only a word
Never give up

HALT  (Restrain your words or even shut your mouth when you are:

There were also some compare and contrast sections in the book:  Characteristics of a Beautifully fierce woman.....How Grace Affects a Fierce Woman.....Patterns of Pride.....  Just to name a few.
I have no problem recommending this book.  Like I said, it was an easy read and worth the time.  It had some stuff in it that I did not agree with but these issues are preference.  Like I said, a dear friend gave it to me so I will always love the book because of that.  Give it a read and let me know what you think!