The good folk at Shepherd Press have sent me a review copy of Broken-Down House. Of course, I haven't been moving at the speed of light around here lately, and I'm not quite in the middle of Everyday Talk. So, what to do? I think I will try to finish what I've started, then move on to the new book, praying that I'll find more than five minutes here and there to do so!
Chapter 5 is entitled "Don't Be Ordinary." This chapter had a profound impact on me, bringing me to repentance. The basic thought is that our children are born sinners. They will sin against us. So how will we respond? Jay gives several ordinary options: despair, anger, avoidance, self-pity, or ignoring the problem altogether ("just get over it"). For me, it wasn't a matter of which response I am prone to give, but more a matter of which response I will give THIS time. I am guilty of all of these.
Although I do believe total depravity in theory, I must still struggle with it in practice. Sin, in myself or in others, always catches me off guard. Of course my children will sin against me....but wait! WHY, OH WHY, did my precious BABY just sin against me? Of course I am a sinner....but wait! I am such an IDIOT to sin in that way AGAIN! (After all, I *am* better than that, you know.)
All of this is a powerful reminder that parenting is for ME. Dealing with sinful behavior, both in myself and in my children, is clearly displaying my own weakness and Christ's sufficiency. My children are also an in-your-face, all-day-long picture of the amazing love the Father has for us. Just like my kids, I repeat the same sins over and over, yet He forgives. May I be like Him!
Finally, the middle section of this chapter deals with Moses and the Israelites as an example in parenting. This line of thinking was excellent, and timely for me as I was asked to write another baby shower devotional. With all credit going to Jay (THANKS!!!), I'd like to reprint the devotional here as a separate post, as it seems I get a few visitors every week looking for this type of material.