The final question I answered over at The Purposeful Wife about my book, Inheritance of Tears, was on the topic of infant salvation. Rachel asked, "I also appreciated your theological look at the question, 'Do all babies go to heaven?' So many Christians today hold to this view without having a clear Scriptural foundation for their belief. Have you always held this position? How did you come to land on your current understanding?"
You can read my answer here.
On this topic, I would also recommend a recent article from Sam Storms which makes similar arguments for infant salvation as I do in my book.
“Happy Mother’s Day, dear sister.”
Does it seem cruel to say such a thing?
Does it sound as though I am insensitive to your loss?
I will be the first to admit that the words don’t come out very comfortably. But I pray that you will trust that I have no desire to belittle your pain or to to make light of your current grief. I don’t wish to add to the painful reminders of your loss that so easily characterize this holiday.
But I want to say it to you, sweet sister.
I want you to know that you are worth celebrating this Mother’s Day—That your desire for motherhood, that your willingness to open your womb to new life, and that your current mourning is worth recognizing.
You are worth recognizing because you are a mother.
What is a mother anyway? Why do we, as a society, set aside a special day to lift up the women in our lives who have children? Is it the mere ability to reproduce that is worth celebrating? If we are focusing on the ability to reproduce, it is God whom we should be celebrating, not mothers, for only he can give life where there was once nothing...
In this quarter’s issue of Credo Magazine, I had the opportunity to share a little bit about the importance of the church to our children. Here’s a snippet from that article:
“Through regular interactions with teachers, parents, mentors, and pastors, our children are given the opportunity to observe the powerful, sanctifying hand of God in the lives of other Christians. Through the ordinance of baptism our children are able to watch as men and women confess their belief in the gospel of Jesus Christ and commit to living their lives in obedience to him. They gaze in wonder as these believers are plunged into the baptismal and brought back up to the joyful celebration of the congregation, symbolizing their death and resurrection with Christ. In the same way, as the communion plate is passed and the wine and bread are consumed by the members of the body, our children witness the centrality of the gospel to every believer’s life. They are beckoned to come and taste of the Lord’s goodness for themselves—to receive the gospel of grace being proclaimed.”
To Read the Full Article, Click Here.
“If a tree falls in the forest, but no one is there to hear it, does it really make a sound?”
I thought about this question in a very literal sense a few weeks ago when my father cut down a gigantic, old, dead tree in our backyard that was threatening to fall on our roof. My boys and I watched in amazement as the tree slowly creaked to the side, then very quickly slammed to the ground, bouncing a couple times upon impact. The sound of it colliding with the ground was tremendous and the vibrations it sent toward us were breathtaking. It was all very spectacular, and we were there to witness it...
Someone recently said to me, “If anyone would be great at homeschooling it would be you,” and I instantly thought, “This person doesn’t know me at all!” I am a disorganized, procrastinating, impatient, and prone-to-anger mess of a mom. In other words: I’m the worst candidate ever for successfully homeschooling my three–soon to be four–children...
A wonderful thing is happening in the Christian publishing world: books are once again being written for women and by women that don’t revolve exclusively around Proverbs 31 and Titus 2! These books are challenging women to step out of their circumstances, behold the beauty of God and his gospel, and then bring that new vision back into their everyday lives.
These gospel-filled books are desperately needed by every woman regardless of her stage of life, but perhaps those who are moms of little ones need this dose of sanity just a smidgen more feverishly than others. Books that give them a theological framework to view their chaotic, non-stop, and and often exhausting calling can feel as good as a full eight hours of sleep when your baby is still nursing through the night does...
“So neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God who gives the growth.” (1 Corinthians 3:7 ESV)
Our new home has many adorable, you-only-get-this-kind-of-character-with-old-houses type features. One feature I enjoy immensely is the corner sink in the kitchen, it looks out into the front yard/driveway and has two HUGE windowsills where I imagined starting a little herb garden and collecting cheerful flowers. I could just picture myself joyfully (ha!) scrubbing the dishes as my gaze ran dreamily through the vibrant homage to domestic tranquility...
Sure they are simple tasks, but their simplicity and repetitiveness do not make them any easier to get done. This is because at the heart of these tasks is a willingness to serve my family by providing for their most basic needs. At the heart of tasks like laundry, dishes, and cooking is the call to humble service, which isn’t easily obeyed by a sinner like me.
Some days it feels as though these are the only things I do! Dishes, dishes, dishes, laundry, laundry, laundry, food, food, food. There is no glory in this job! There’s only the repetitive motions of service which are rarely seen or acknowledged by others. I often find myself battling bitterness and anger as I wash the dishes we’ve just eaten from, the pots and pans I just used to cook our meal with, and the table where our meal was too quickly eaten as the needs of a fussy baby outweighed my desire for an “ideal” sit-down dinner. Thoughts swirl through my head, seeking to convince me that it is all in vain and all so unimportant. As I scrape the burnt-on food off of another pan I must force myself to remember the beauty in service–in these small, but important expressions of love...
One of the simplest and funnest Christmas traditions we began a few years ago was a picture book countdown. This tradition serves three purposes in our family:
- It is super fun to open a present every day. Even though most of the books are repeats from last year, they are special because we only bring them out at Christmas time!
- It helps to keep our hearts focused on the reason we are celebrating. The books we have selected are all focused on the birth of Christ.
- It builds the anticipation for Christmas day! Who doesn’t love a countdown?
Before December begins I wrap our collection of Christmas books and number them–beginning with the total number of books we have–in descending order all the way down to 1. We are still working our way up to the full 25, but have built our collection surprisingly quickly! (I also try to make use of our local library’s books to fill in the days I don’t have books for.)...
“If you are like me, then motherhood may be the first time you were really tested in the business of laying down your life. I am not saying I never did anything hard before I became a mother, but motherhood is different. For one, most other challenges that I had experience with ended. Motherhood is not just a job, it is an identity. More importantly, it is an identity that begins and ends with giving.” (Rachel Jankovic, Fit to Burst)
There are a lot of mothering books out there. Many of them promise commiseration, practical help, vision, or encouragement, but few of them offer all of the above in short, 3-5 page chapters that a mom of little kids will actually have time to read and savor. Fit to Burst: Abundance, Mayhem, and the Joys of Motherhood does just that. Each chapter is barely longer than a blog post, but filled with the wisdom and wit we have all come expect in Rachel Jankovic’s writing. It is good that the chapters are short, because their depth demands lengthy contemplation and let’s face it, someone in our home is peeing in a bathroom waste basket and in moments we will have to decide whether said basket will be cleaned or chucked. Wait, is that just in my home? In any case, I’m sure that every mom with little ones will appreciate not only the short chapters, but most importantly the insightful words within them!...