With my Care
This is an Own Your Life Book Club post. Even if you’re not reading through the book with us, please read on and be encouraged!
In my half-sleepy stupor this morning I was thinking about how I needed to clean my house and have more vision for my home and how it could be used to truly shape the souls of my children. And then of course I thought about Sally and that she is an extraordinary person.
As I read through the final chapters of the book, it is more and more evident that not only is she extraordinary, she is rare voice in our culture.
I have never met anyone like her before. She is wise and scriptural and calls us to be holy, but she is anti-legalism and is full of grace and faith and fun and beauty and freedom. She raised her children with deep intention and time and cultivating, and yet she, with her husband, has run a ministry for the last (almost) 20 years without losing her integrity or at the expense of her children.
I have come to see that she was able to do these things because she had a well of conviction.
She wrote down several things, such as:
Home is the foundation upon which great civilizations are built…
Home is the place where virtue is shaped: minds are fed great ideas, truth and beauty, the finest of writing, and the clearest of thinking…
Home is the place where the whispers ofGod’s love are heard regularly, the touch of His hands is given intentionally through the day, and the words of His encouragement and affirmation lay the foundation of loving relationships.
Home is the place where stories of heroism, sacrifice, love, and redemption are celebrated and embraced…
Over time she refined these thoughts and made them practical. For example she put…
- Bookshelves in every bedroom
- A library/tea room with comfy chairs, a tea set, paintings, and candles and music, which provides a lovely getaway for heart-to-hear conversations
- A basket of books and a chair in each bedroom to encourage reading and quiet time, during which God can speak to our hearts and minds
Those are just a few, but the point is, she was creating an intentional environment all around her and her family. I love this and plan on implementing several of her suggestions.
Throughout these last chapters, Sally talks about cultivating character and integrity. She says that, “character is the internal attributes that determine a person’s external integrity and work ethic. Character provides the foundation of spiritual and moral strength that rules life decisions, commitments, and faithfulness. Unless we own the fact that the choices and actions we make in life will indeed have important consequences, we will make flippant, easy decisions that kill the potential of our becoming strong and fit leaders in our homes and communities.”
In Chapter 16, Sally gives us some “secrets” of motherhood. Let me share a few:
- Time spent together is what communicates love to your children. You can’t influence them or expect them to adopt your values without making this commitment…
- You are the mother your children need. Be yourself. When you like who God made you to be, you give your children the invaluable gift of a happy mom.
- Don’t make your children an idol. They were not placed on earth to fulfill your needs and desires…
- There is no formula or exact way to ensure you are doing it right…
- All children resist training…
- Remember that God has access to their little brains…
There are more “secrets” she lists, and of course she goes more in depth into these truths, but I wanted to give you a taste, especially since it’s so easy to think, “I’m not a good enough mom for my kids” or, “Just tell me what to do and I’ll do it.” You are the mom God gave to your children, and there is no formula, just wisdom principles. Have you got a copy of Own Your Life yet? If you haven’t, now would be a good time. SO MUCH WISDOM. 🙂
One of the most powerful things in this book is found in the last chapter, and it is a letter Sally wrote that she wants to be read at her funeral. You guys, she read it at her conference and I cried. It is so beautiful. I’m not even going to give you a hint of it because you just need to get the book and read it yourself. It will so embolden you to live a life of discipleship and love and faith.
Well friends, this concludes the Own Your Life book club. It was a quick one, I know, and I would encourage you to go back and relish some of the words and put in place a vision and a plan for your life and your home.
You won’t regret it.
“Our children learn to read our lives, and they long for our love before they believe our doctrines.” Chapter 11
“When a culture has no heroes to inspire, no models of integrity to capture people’s imaginations, the level of dignity, decency, ad nobility declines.” Chapter 12
“God has placed seed potential in each of our lives. We have the potential for blooming, so to speak, but we also require wise tending to grow and to thrive.” Chapter 12
“Your life cannot be separated from your character.” (Tweet That) Chapter 12
“If I could give you only one encouragement in this book, it would be to measure your life by how well you have loved. In the moment that you love well, you are the most like Jesus.” Chapter 13
“To build a home of ideals means a life of sacrifice. It means a lot of work, and it’s never going to be over. These ideals don’t come easily to anyone; they come through battle. It’s an illusion to think that building a place of beauty ever happens naturally to anymore; it happens little by little…through hard work…When we cultivate our souls, our children will have something to draw from. The house with the life of God isn’t a perfect house, it’s a redeemed house! It’s not a home without sin, or without messes or without spilled milk, but we redeem one more moment, in the joy of living with Him, and that moment becomes a memory, an unspoken message that lasts for life.” Chapter 14
“Marriage is a work of divine art and a masterpiece created over a lifetime.” Chapter 15
“Mothers, I came to believe, were God’s finest idea for how such a righteous legacy would be passed on in each generation. They were designed by Him to influence the hearts of children with the sanctuary of their own homes and to help shape them into the next generation of godly leaders…The key to building godly souls is growing them in maturity in a home where the life of Christ is lived, breathed, and taught. Satan would love to obscure such an important calling. No wonder our world has lost the imagination for just how important the role of motherhood is to the health of further generations.” Chapter 16
What stood out to you in these chapters? How does it impact your life?
Stay up-to-date on all book club news by signing up below!
This newsletter is specifically for book club updates and will only contain book club news. It is separate from The Sisterhood Circle and from SarahMae.com blog posts that you have sent to your inbox.
There are affiliate links in this post. To read my disclosure policy, click here.
Let's not lose touch!
Get weekly inspiration on mothering and life, plus the first 42 pages of my new book, Having a Martha Home the Mary Way: 31 Days to a Clean House and a Satisfied Soul.