Woohoo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I am so excited!!! I’m back on track with my “read a book a month” goal for this year! I was so behind and so I made a pretty steep goal for myself of finishing a book (that I had only read 1 chapter of…gulp!!) during the last 5 days of March. And it’s done! I’m thrilled. Can you tell? 😉 It feels so good when I complete a goal I’ve made for myself – especially when it’s difficult!
I learned a couple things during these last few days of reading voraciously:
- I tend to waste time doing unimportant things when I could be using that time to…well, in this case, read. 🙂
- It’s more pleasant to read during cold and rainy weather than on a warm, sunny day.
- Taking time reading takes preparation if you’re going to make sure other household duties get completed. Take dinner for example. On Wednesday, I got so carried away with reading that I ended up being late and somewhat stressed (oops) at dinner time. Add to that: we invited the JR’s & SR’s in our youth group to come hang out after the service. Meaning: I needed to make food for that too. And, here I was reading the afternoon away. bad idea. learn from my mistake. 😉
The book I read is called Treasuring God in Our Traditions. It’s written by Noel Piper with a foreword and poetry by her husband, John Piper.
This book is all about traditions – specifically, traditions in a Christian home. Piper discusses the meaning, reasons for, and benefits of traditions. Chapters are filled with practical suggestions of how to center your traditions around God, whether you’re celebrating birthdays, anniversaries, or special holidays. You may enjoy this book if you are studying at an online Christian college.
I have two favorite chapters: chapters 6 & 8.
Chapter 6 is entitled ” “Everyday” traditions, the family, and the world.” Piper discusses teaching your children who & what their family is, helping them relate to the world outside their home, learning order, their place in the family, their history, and how to be adults. Under one of the sections, she discusses how to teach your children decision-making skills:
“Some traditions are not events and are not on a regular schedule. Sometimes a tradition is words that you know you will hear in a certain situation. If our children ask my husband, “What’s wrong with . . . ?” they know what he’ll answer. He’ll say, “That’s the wrong question. Here’s what you need to be asking: Will it strengthen my faith and help me love Jesus more?” Those are the basic filters.” (page 54)
Chapter 8: “Especially Christmas,” is packed with thoughts and ideas of the Christmas season. I love how Piper constantly calls attention to what we are teaching our children through the traditions we practice. My favorite suggestion in this chapter is the gift to Jesus. (She talks about it in detail on page 86.)
“It may be easy for us to forget that this is Jesus’ birthday. That usually means gifts to the birthday person. Children especially will think it normal that Jesus should receive something for his birthday. . . One of the unusual thing about Jesus is that when we give a gift to him, other people benefit. “And the King will answer them. ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me’ ” (Matthew 25:40).”
My absolute favorite part of this book, though, was the appendix. I know…usually I think of the appendix as the most boring part of books…as if the author had some extra stuff and just threw it at the end because she didn’t want to waste all the time she spent on it. 😉 Not this one! John & Noel write about how to worship as a family. It begins with thoughts and philosophy from John about why a family should be concerned to worship together and ends with practical suggestions from Noel concerning how to train your children to sit still and learn during church services.
If for no other reason, buy this book for the appendix. Excellent.
You can find the book here – currently $10.19.
And you can take a peek inside too. Don’t know why you would want to since it’s not a picture book. But if you do, go for it. 😉
Ahhh…it feels so nice to accomplish your goals, doesn’t it?