I’ve been reading a new genre these days – mommy lit. I’m not really interested in parenting how-to books because every kid is different. There are no formulas in relationships and that includes babies. Or so I have observed. I have a small group of authors that I love and trust. I found a new book this week through Sarah Bessey’s newsletter. The forward to the book was written by Ann Voskamp and the there was a short review in the first few pages by Shauna Niequist. If Sarah, Ann, and Shauna liked it, I assumed it must be a good read. The book that I am referring to is Found: Questions, Grace & Everyday Prayer by Micha Boyett. I love reading books like this because I am reminded that I am not alone and I am not the only person who thinks these things. Micha used to be in full-time ministry before she became a stay at home mom. Motherhood interrupted her flow of spirituality. Suddenly she wasn’t praying the way she used and she felt like it was her fault. She thought that the life of a stay at home mom wasn’t impressive enough to God. She felt like she was disappointing him by no longer doing the “holy” work of ministry. Micha wrestles with the holiness of mothering and the worthiness of this calling. She validates that eternal significance of investing in your family. She is honest about the raw, hard moments that motherhood can bring. Micha leans towards the liturgical church calendar and she loves the monastic order of Benedict. She likes the flow, the purpose and the stability of their prayer lifestyle. I have not been drawn this particular way, but I love getting the perspective of another frame work of faith. It was very calming and purposeful.
This book got me thinking about my prayer life and spiritual life. Motherhood has definitely changed how I do things. I used to keep a prayer journal. Writing my thoughts helped me get them out of my head. But now sitting down to journal isn’t as easy was a it once was. I find though that in each new season of my life I need Jesus just as much as before. There is no walking this life alone. My prayer life has changed and it has deepened as a mother. I talk to God a lot. Staying home with a baby takes prayer! I’ve never been a list person. I don’t go down a sheet paper with a list of requests that I daily take to the Lord. I do think about my friends and loved ones. In those moments when they come to my mind, I say a prayer for them. If I know someone has a job interview or a doctor’s appointment, I try to say a prayer for them. I know those things are important. Even if someone randomly comes to mind, I try to say a prayer of blessing over them. My prayer life feels like a relationship. I chat with God often. I tell him how I really feel. I ask that he act on behalf of others. It’s never been rigid thing. I love to pray. However, I would not label myself as great prayer warrior or an intercessor. I don’t spend hours on my knees petitioning heaven. I just don’t have hours at my disposal these days. I believe that you should the best you can with that you got. I believe that talking to God shouldn’t be formal and something you check off your list of things to do.
I’ve also been thinking about the discipline of Bible reading. I love reading my Bible. It’s a really good book! I don’t read my Bible everyday. I do use a Bible reading plan, but I’m the kind of person that gets ahead so I don’t fall behind. Right now I am one month ahead in my reading. If I miss a day or two, it’s no big deal. If I have time and I’m engaged then I will read more than one day at a time. I’m getting to that place where I’ve read the Bible in a year for a few years now and I think that it’s time to challenge myself in a new way. Once I finish this current plan, I think I’m going to camp out in a certain book of the Bible for a year. I’m not quite sure what book that will be yet. Instead of reading all of my Bible, I want to go deep with a part of it. I want to live in that book for a while and really get to know. I want to move into it and make it my neighborhood. I’ll keep you posted as I figure this out more. I’m ready for something different. I’m great at checking boxes and following plans. I’m curious to see how I do getting off the marked path. I think experimenting is always eye opening.
Sooo… Anyway, back to mommy literature, I’m grateful for the discovery of a new author and a book that made me think about my own mothering and my own faith. Motherhood and faith are so linked. It really is important work and my faith keeps me going through it. Next on my list of mommy books is Surprised by Motherhood by Lisa-Jo Baker. Can’t wait!