Excerpts from my ‘Titus 2 mentors’ Part I: Jean Fleming, “A Mother’s Heart”

Today I’m sharing some excerpts from one of my favorite books on motherhood…(read more about my heart behind this here).

A Mother’s Heart by Jean Fleming is “a look at values, vision and character for the Christian mother.” It is a really good foundational, framework-laying read on motherhood. The book is full of stories and colorful illustrations that illumine key concepts and make them memorable. She especially addresses what is God’s work and what is a parent’s work in raising children, and reminds mothers to ‘Start with Yourself’ with a healthy relationship with God, values, obedience, etc. Another theme that Fleming focuses on is a mother’s prayer life. She gives a lot of instruction and ideas for becoming a prayer warrior for your children. Each chapter concludes with a few “Questions for Reflection or Discussion” that may be useful for personal reflection and prayer, or for a couple to talk through together as they collaborate in the important work of raising godly children.

I would certainly recommend this book! Here are some excerpts…

amothersheart

“If you are a mother, you have a calling from God. God entrusts into your care a life, a future, a piece of what the world will become. You become part of the solution or part of the problem that faces us today.”

“Although some experts predict a future need for more institutional solutions, new studies conclude that there’s ‘no place like home’ when it comes to meeting children’s needs…Dr. Jack Raskins, psychiatrist at the Children’s Orthopedic Hospital and the University of Washington in Seattle, considers the early months most crucial. The key, he says, ‘is the child’s close, unbroken attachment in the early months to the people who care for him. Too much disruption imbeds in the personality traits that can be disruptive for a lifetime. People are hyped up over adolescent drug abuse, pregnancies, suicide, and the cults children join. But the same roots underlie them all. The roots are depression and emotional deprivation. These are laid down in the personality in the early months of life. They grow out of poor attachments and inadequate affection and contact for the child in the first months. Attachment to the people who love him and who respond to his needs is nothing less than the foundation of the child’s personality.'” 

“In every generation mothers must answer the call to be what no one else can be and to do what no one else can do for their children. It isn’t that mothers can’t do many other things, but if they refuse to accept their calling as mother some child ends up short changed. And the empty space that mother leaves echos for generations. Mothers are neither the cause of all society’s ills nor the saviors of the nation. But the future of society does depend, in part, on what we do with the children under our care. What calling could be more significant or more glorifying to God? God calls us to bring to our motherhood a high level of commitment, and a right perspective born out of a clear vision and a biblical value system. Will you answer his call?”

Nurture Plant“The aspect of mothering that excites me most is knowing that I am making a permanent difference in my children’s lives. I am a woman of influence. I impart values, stimulate creativity, develop compassion, modify weaknesses, and nurture strengths. I can open life up to another individual. And I can open an individual up to life….”

“It is easy to feel frustrated by the seemingly conflicting demands of children and ministry to those outside the home…much of this frustration can be eased when we realize the family is an important part of God’s strategy for propagating the faith and redeeming a people for Himself. In our zeal, perhaps we have overlooked potential disciples in our midst. We may have also neglected the impact families can have through family-to-family evangelism and discipling.”

“If commitment to our role as mother languishes, this may be true not because the job is too small or unchallenging but because our vision is too small.”

“Effective mothering is a matter of values….As you read the Bible, ask God, ‘What do you value, Lord?’…Do you value relationships with people? What are you doing to develop your relationship with your husband and children? Are they more important than things? Do you value your children more than your living room furniture, more than your career, and more than your rose garden? …God turns man’s value system upside down. ‘What is highly valued among men is detestable in God’s sight.’ (Luke 16:15)”

“One gauge of our values is the amount of time we spend with our children.”Antique_Clock_Face

“Satisfaction seldom comes instantly in mothering.”

“Are my creativity, my wit, and my best efforts spent outside my family? Do they get only the leftovers?…Am I more spiritual, more loving, or more fun somewhere else? Who gets my best – my family or others?”

“…it isn’t the creative ideas or great insights that lie at the heart of mothering, but the mother’s commitment and willingness to pay the price. She must be willing to invest time in cultivating a heart and lifestyle that will make her values a reality in the lives of her children.”

“The single most important decision a mother can make is to develop her own life with God.”

“Mothering is like ditch-digging (2 Kings 3:16-18). As mothers we can do nothing to persuade or convince our children to love god. We can dig the ditches, but we can’t fill them. We can teach our children about God, pray for them, live the Christian life before them, and expose them to others who love and serve God. But only God can give them spiritual life. God doesn’t need our help, but in His sovereign plan He invites us to take part actively – to colabor with Him as He works in their lives.”

“Prayer may be our most effective ministry in our children’s lives….it is impossible to begin too soon, or to pray too much for our children.”

To be continued…

jc

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3 thoughts on “Excerpts from my ‘Titus 2 mentors’ Part I: Jean Fleming, “A Mother’s Heart”

  1. Pingback: Excerpts from my ‘Titus 2 mentors’ Part II: Jean Fleming, “A Mother’s Heart” | jordan cristine | a day in the life

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