Archive for May 2011

Happy Mother’s Day

The Value of a Career in Motherhood.

Adapted from G.K. Chesterton’s essay, What’s Wrong with the World.

Mothers are quickly thrust into a career of immanent importance.  Their babies need not to be taught a trade, but to be introduced to the world.  To put the matter shortly, a mother is generally shut up in a house with a human being at the time when he or she asks all the questions that there are and even some that there aren’t. It would be odd if she retained any of the narrowness of a specialist.

Now if anyone says this duty of enlightenment is in itself too exacting and oppressive, I can understand the view.  I can only answer that God has thought it wise to cast this burden on women in order to keep common-sense in the world.  But when people begin to talk about this domestic duty as not only difficult but trivial and dreary, I simply give up on the question.  For I cannot with the utmost energy of imagination understand what they mean.

When Motherhood, for instance, is called drudgery, all the difficulty arises from a double meaning in the word.  If drudgery only means dreadfully hard work I admit the mother drudges in the home.  But if it means that the hard work is more heavy because it is trivial, colorless and of small importance to the soul, then I say, I give up; I do not know what you mean.

To be the Queen within a definite area, deciding sales, banquets, labors and holidays; to be in business in a certain area, providing a certain expertise or service; to be Aristotle, teaching within a certain area, morals, manners and philosophy; I can understand how this can exhaust the mind, but how can it not also narrow it?  How can it be an important career to tell others about the Rule of Three, and an unimportant career to tell ones own children about everything in the universe?  How can it be more meaningful to tell the same thing to everyone, and less meaningful to be everything to someone?  No; a mothers career is laborious, but because it is gigantic, not because it is minute.  I will pity Mrs. Jones for the hugeness of her task; I will never pity her for its smallness.

Phil’s Personal Bible Study Suggestions.

Reading and re-reading 1 book of the Bible for several months is my favorite way to study the Bible. For those just starting out I recommend starting with the Gospel of John, Genesis, Philippians, or Romans. A very good, and free, source for notes that can help explain thing you don’t understand about the Bible can be found at: http://www.soniclight.com/constable/notes.htm

Here is how I typically work my way through passages of the Bible.

 

Step 1. Understand What The Passage Is Saying

Read a chapter or section of scripture carefully and prayerfully, asking the Holy Spirit to make the truth clear.  Summarize each paragraph looking for things that are repeated, things that are alike, things that contrast, and things that are emphasized.

Go deeper by answering the questions:

1. Where are things happening?

2. Who is involved?

3. When is the action/argument taking place?

4. What is happening in this section?

5. How is God working?

6. Why does God want us to know about this?

Step 2. Understand What The Passage Means

Answer the questions:

  1. What do I learn about God in this passage?
  2. What do I learn about myself in this passage?
  3. What are the truths that stand out to me in this passage?

Step 3. Prayerfully ask,  “What Does God Want Me to Do?”

Answer the questions:

  1. What does this passage tell me about God?
  2. What does this passage tell me about living for God rather than myself?

Go deeper by asking:

  • Is there an example for me to follow?
  • Is there a sin for me to avoid?
  • Is there a promise I can be assured by?
  • Is there a prayer I can be praying?
  • Is there an attitude I need to change?
  • Is there a command for me to obey?

Step 4. Pray.

Adoration: Praise God for what this reveals about him.

Confession: Repent for wrong behavior, and wrong attitudes and thank God for Christ’s grace to forgive and cleanse you.

Thanksgiving: Thank God for His amazingly faithful love and kindness.

Supplication:  Ask for God’s will to be done in specific challenges in the lives of others,in our city and/or around the world.

Additional Tools

Living by the Book by Howard Hendricks

30 Days to Understanding the Bible by Max Anders