Friday, September 13, 2013


Well, here I go again...talking about books!  It seems I have a slight addiction but a big problem:  so many books, but so little time.  I plod away, though, realizing I may never complete Les Mis, at least not in the forseeable future.  (I mean, really, did Hugo have to spend hundreds of pages talking about Waterloo?  I'm all for character development but come on!)

So now I am immersed in a few good reads (besides Les Mis...I read a chapter here and there to mix things up) and I thought I would share one of them with you.

I have been a consumer of parenting books ever since I was blessed to become a mom, especially those written by trustworthy Christian women and men who have successfully raised godly kids.  When my big kids were toddlers my world revolved around surviving potty training, tantrums, and picky eating.  But now? Now I am in the throes of teenagers...hormones, emotional instability, crazy busy evenings of church, sports, dance and music activities as well as homeschooling all five of them through four grades at once.  My parenting needs have shifted greatly.
So imagine my joy at finding the book Desperate:  Hope for the Mom Who Needs to Breathe by Sarah Mae and Sally Clarkson.  I happily picked it up and began to dive into the first chapter, but was quickly disappointed when I realized Sarah's kids are still little.  I can tell you for a fact that I had no business writing a book about parenting a toddler or preschooler while I was in the thick of those years myself.  But I read on, and I am so glad I did.  Sally Clarkson, who co-wrote the book, is the voice of the older woman.  She is the wise woman who has lived through the raising of children, homeschooling, and ministry.  She is delightfully real, and is the perfect antithesis to Sarah's young mom struggles.  The book is written much like a series of letters:  Sarah expressing a struggle and Sally answering with years of wisdom under her belt.
I can now tell you that I love this book.
To read advice from a woman who parented the way I am trying, whose kids were (refreshingly) not perfect and who struggled with seasons of feeling worn down and tired, at times neglecting her relationship with God and the godly women He had placed in her life for each season...well, to read this book has been a breath of fresh air.  I am encouraged that the teen struggles are survivable, that though the enemy wages war I am equipped to fight and win because of who Jesus is and because He has placed me here for such a time as this.  I am reminded that what the world calls success is often radically different than how God measures success.  I am encouraged to catch God's vision for my children and raise them with that in mind, letting Him turn the stumbling blocks into stepping stones.  I am convicted of my own selfishness and self-centered nature and challenged to sacrificially love and train up my children for the glory of God.

This book has been a wonderful encouragement for me in this busy season of life.  I'm so thankful that Sarah Mae and Sally Clarkson wrote this book and were willing to share "the good, the bad, and the ugly" when it comes to their struggles and successes as moms.  Reality is always a better teacher than "pie-in-the-sky" advice.  No one is perfect, but the world of Facebook and Pinterest can sure make it appear that way.  This book was a refeshing change and I will probably read it again soon so that I don't forget the valuable lessons I am learning from these two godly women.

By the way, the authors have no idea I am writing this.  I have never met them, nor will I receive anything if you buy this book.  As a friend, I just wanted to pass on to you what has been a blessing to me.  Enjoy:)

And let me know if you read it.  I'd love to hear your thoughts!

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