I love Christian parenting books, but all too often I find myself discouraged by how perfect the authors' lives seem, as if they've set a bar I can only hope to reach. Just Moms is not that type, thankfully, but is full of fresh voices of encouragement from moms who freely admit that they don't have all the answers. Editors Melanie Springer Mock and Rebekah D. Schneiter have compiled a collection of stories written by everyday moms teaching their children the values of truth, simplicity, equality, love, and peace in the everyday moments. The sections are as follows:
1. "All One in Christ Jesus" -- I loved Jennifer Rouse's story "Precious in God's Sight" about discussing race with her daughters.
2. "Knowing the True Light" -- Paula J. Hampton's "To Tell the Truth" about her first grader's lie struck a chord with me as I too have struggled with holding my young children to a standard of honesty that others would rather laugh off.
3. "Blessed are the Peacemakers" -- this is the section where the Mennonite teaching of pacifism is illustrated. Regardless of your political views, there is still much food for thought here.
4. "Lilies of the Field" -- my favorite section as the battle against materialism is constant! "The Economics of Bouncy Balls" by Mock and "Buying the Whole Farm" by Marta Oti Sears both spoke to me in the daily struggle against the "I wants", but I also loved Jessica Kantola's "Choose to Be" on choosing happiness.
5. "In the World" -- "Starbucks-Colored Glasses" by Lisa Graham McMinn was an inspiring essay on treating the invisible people of our society with dignity and this whole section spoke to being in the world but not like the world, whatever the circumstance.
I called this review "Encouragement from the Trenches of Parenthood" rather than "...Motherhood" because as other reviewers have said, this is a book to be read by all parents, not just moms. Definitely a worthy addition to any parent's library in spite of the title!
cross-posted on Amazon and Goodreads