Monday, August 1, 2011

Loving the Little Years

A couple of weeks ago, a friend sent me a link to an article called "Motherhood is a Calling (And Where Your Children Rank)." I was intrigued enough by the article that I decided to order the author's book, Loving the Little Years: Motherhood in the Trenches.

I flew threw this book in less than 24 hours! It was short, compelling, and easy to read. There are many gems to be found in this brief tome, and I have found myself continuing to mull over many of them. Here are some of my favorite thoughts from the book, written by Rachel Jankovic:

*"As you deal with your children, deal with yourself always and first."

*"You cannot resist opportunities to be corrected by God, and expect them {your children} to receive correction from you."

*If the sins {your children are struggling with} have changed, it can be a sign of growth. It is not as though our children are going to emerge from their current problems into perfect holiness if only we give them enough swats. They are going to emerge from one set of problems into the next, and that is good. That is the way of the Christian walk." (!)

*When our children are fussing, the antidote for them is gratitude." (Same for parents, too, right?!)

*"Prioritize your children far and away above the other work you need to get done. They are the only part of your work that really matters."

One of the most convicting concepts of the book is to rejoice in the challenges of motherhood. As Rachel says in ending the book, "If you accept your lot, and rejoice in your toil, God will give you the kind of overwhelming joy that cannot remember the details."

In addition to the above, I thought Rachel had some good advice for teaching kids to handle their emotions--she and her husband teach their children that their feelings are like horses that they must ride and control. She also suggests helping kids learn to anticipate their emotional responses, and to offer lots of praise when you see your children overcoming emotional temptations.

I also liked what Rachel had to say about dealing with sibling squabbles, and teaching kids to remain in fellowship with one another.

This was thought-provoking book that I will likely re-read in the future. Has anyone else read it? Which of the quotes above stands out to you the most?


Kristin said...

I read that article too! I think I would love that book and may need to look into getting it from the sounds of it.

What an appropriate post for my day today, in the trenches of motherhood with sickness surrounding me!

Thanks for sharing!

Mom said...

I have never heard of this book, but the quote you have in bold totally made me think of the time you reminded me of my priorities -- I had only been back in the work force for a short time and was responsible for answering the phone. You called me after school one afternoon, and I had to interrupt our conversation several times to answer another line. When you expressed frustration about that, I replied that it was my job -- to which you brilliantly replied that you were my job, too! You were absolutely right!! I didn't interrupt the remainder of our conversation that day and have tried to keep my priorities straight ever since! Love you lots, Mom

Katie said...

I have never read this book, but it sounds like it is worthwhile. Thank you for sharing those quotes. The first one really struck me. I find that if my heart is not right, I will not have the ability to parent my children's hearts in the way God would have me to. I also love the last quote you bolded ~ what a truth!!

thehomespunheart said...

I've never heard of this - and my favorite thought from what you shared is about the emotions being compared to horses. Would also be interested to read the part about siblings staying in fellowship with one another.

Carrie said...

Yuuup! I read it and loved it also.

I've since purchased additional copies to give away to some new mothers that I know because I thought Jankovic's advice spot-on.