WHAT WAS THE LESSON IN THIS?

MBA

It was an ordinary afternoon, driving my middle child home from school, when I passed a scene on the side of the road.  A pick up truck was backed up to a load of sod spilled across the road.  Based on the position of the sod, you could tell it had slid off when turning the corner.  I saw a man who was easily 15-20 years older than I, sweating and struggling, moving that sod back on the truck.

Normally,  I have my garden gloves in the trunk (I am part of a community garden).  Today, I didn’t.  There also wasn’t a safe place to park, so that I could help him while my child sat in the car.  It was a busy intersection and I didn’t want her out there helping me or doing Lord knows what, while I was distracted.  So, we drove by.

But, I didn’t like it.  It was eating at me, I should help this man.  I don’t know if I could says I was “younger and stronger”, but I was certainly capable.   The further I drove, the more it bothered me.  In my head, the scene played out that someone would see me stopped helping him… and they too would stop and help.  Then in short order, with all the the help, he’d be on his way.  I had this vision of community coming together.

I pulled in to my driveway, ran into the house, grabbed my garden gloves and left my teenager in charge.  I drove back to find the truck gone, and the sod still there in the road.

Huh.

I drove by, found a parking lot to turn around in… and decided to head back home.  In the amount of time it took me to turn around and get back to that spot of the intersection… THREE vehicles stopped to take some of the sod.

It all began making sense.  The sod was dropped, most likely, by a larger truck.  Probably from one of the local sod farms in the area.  It wasn’t worth it the effort for them to load it back up.  The man I saw was just one of many taking advantage of a blessing in the road.  Clearly, not greedy, he took just enough and left the rest for others to glean from.  (It makes me think of the fields in the Bible and how they would leave the remnants for the poor and widowed to glean from ).

But I couldn’t help and wonder… if I wasn’t there to help this man, why did I have such a burning conviction to turn around?

This could have been an exercise in obedience.

But, I think… more than likely, it was a lesson for my children.  One of those moments where they see someone respond to a need.

 

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BOOK REVIEW: Housewife Theologian by Aimee Byrd

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If you are like me, any book about being a housewife, mother, keeper of the home or helpmate will grab your attention.  Then slowly, over time… lose it.  Why?  I believe, in most cases, it is because these talented authors are not writing TO ME.  They are writing to the new mom, or a young mom.  They are writing to the newlywed.  They are writing more about relationships with your kids or spouse…  like how to “train up your children in the way they should go”; which is really more a parenting book than a devotional.  It’s more superficial, or about THEM and not as much about ME.

Now, I am not saying that advice of that kind isn’t good.  In fact, IT IS VERY GOOD.   It’s just never what I have been looking for.  As a mom with a teenager, I need a devotional that is going to go beyond potty training and temper tantrums.  As a wife of almost sixteen years, I need advice on how to break those habits we allowed to get out of hand for so long, and reconnect ourselves as a couple.  Or, even better, a glimpse into what the future is going to be like when the kids are grown and living their own adult lives.   As a believer, I am looking for more than a reminder that God loves me, that this too shall pass, children are a gift of the Lord, etc.   I am looking for depth & life application.  As a person with a chronic illness, sometimes I have only enough energy and stamina to get a few pages of reading in.  On those days, I need a solid dose of information versus a light and whimsical devotion, wrapped around letting go of the anger when your toddler spills the cherry kool-aid on your brand new carpet.  My soul cries for MORE.

Aimee Byrd… she delivered it.

In Regards to the Writer: Aimee Byrd

While the book jacket refers to her as “an ordinary mom of three”, I find her extraordinary.  Her writing style is one that I enjoy, because she writes as if speaking to someone with a solid head on her shoulders.  No, I am not talking about it being uber intellectual & so cerebral that the laywoman couldn’t read it.  However, it’s not watered down reading.  You can’t rush through this devotional and get the gist of it.  You really need to slowly ingest every word & take some time to digest it.  (Sorry for the food analogy, I’m trying to ignore the fact that I am hungry.)

I appreciate that Aimee Byrd sees that women not only want more out of devotions, but we need it.  She balances wisdom and information with warmth; you feel welcomed into her world.  She is witty and funny, and real.  You can relate to her.  If you have ever wanted a mentor in your life, she would fit the bill.   Aimee Byrd doesn’t underestimate her reader’s ability to delve into the word, and amplifies the need to do so.

In Regards to the Book:  The Housewife Theologian

I didn’t really catch on, at first, that the book was a devotional or small group style book.  I actually thought the introduction was the first chapter, and even marked out significant passages.  If you are a person who skips the introduction of books, DO NOT SKIP THIS ONE!  You won’t regret reading it.  The chapters are well written, building upon each other.  While I would consider them easy to read, they are also packed full of so much good information, you are not going to want to rush through them.  Each chapter is capped off with a list of Journaling Questions, which you can use for independent study and reflection.  However, these questions would also be great in a book club or small group setting.

Highlights from the Text:

“When you fall in love with your husband, are you satisfied at that moment to learn nothing else about him?  Of course not, the opposite is true; you want to know more and more of him.  And your love grows in this way.  Now think of our all-knowing, all-powerful God.  Can we ever exhaust our learning of Him?”  (Aimee Byrd – The Housewife Theologian)

“Our American do-it-yourself way of thinking may make it more difficult to understand the gift of righteousness.”   (Aimee Byrd – The Housewife Theologian)

“We can get so caught up in the struggle with sin that we can forget that it no longer has a reigning power over us.  We need to be reminded that we are under the reign of grace.” (Aimee Byrd – The Housewife Theologian)

“Women especially play a huge role in showing the face of Christianity to the watching world.”  (Aimee Byrd – The Housewife Theologian)

Information on the Book

Title:  The Housewife Theologian

Author:  Aimee Byrd

Publisher:  P&R Publishing

ISBN: 978-1-59638-665-5