Friday, September 5, 2008

Sweet, Life Friends

God has blessed me with Ashley's friendship and accountability for six years, now. WOW! "Ashley, can you believe it's been that long!?!?" What a great six years it's been...living life side-by-side...praying through our jobs, home purchases, dating and then marrying our husbands and now praying through having babies!!

How fun is life in the Lord's will! I say this because I didn't have to follow God's leading six years ago, when HE opened the door for me to move in with Ashley and our third roommate, Karen, but I am thankful with all of my heart that I did! I still get to meet with Ashley each week, catching up on our lives, intentionally sharing prayer requests and praises and sharing in sweet seasons of life.
Two women have recently recommended the book Shepherding A Child's Heart by Tedd Tripp. Since Ashley's just had Nathan, and I'll be having Rhys pretty soon, I'm excited to go through this book as our next book/Bible study, as we continue to meet for our weekly accountability. Ashley and I met last Saturday and specifically prayed for clear direction on what the Lord would have us study next. What sweet affirmation and direction He has provided so quickly!

I'm sure I'll be sharing as I learn from this great resource! Russell plans to read along, as well. We know we have a lot to learn! :)

2 comments:

Mark C Tubbs said...

Shireen,

Congratulations on your baby boy's impending arrival.

I also want to thank you for linking to Discerning Reader. I function as the Managing Editor of DR and once in awhile I look through the link feed. Today it brought me to your site.

Shepherding a Child's Heart is indeed a wonderful book. We recommend it highly over at DR. But in my capacity as a book reviewer, a former bookstore employee, the ministry leader of our church's book table, and most importantly, as a dad of (almost) three children, I would recommend you read Shepherding when your child is preschool age. Like many other people, I read Shepherding when my son was in newborn diapers; the problem is, you have no context for the content of the book when your children are that young.

For what it's worth, whenever I am asked to recommend a book for first-time parents, I recommend one or all of the following:

Prayers for Mothers of Newborns by Angela Hunt. Hunt's Prayers for the Mother to Be is also wonderful (Thomas Nelson).

The Religious Nature and Biblical Nurture of God's Children: A Guide for Parents and Teachers by Dr. Jack Fennema sets out a wonderful parenting philosophy for parenting from newborn to adolescent (Dordt College Press).

My Friend, My Hero, My Dad: The Extraordinary Influence of an Ordinary Man by Stephen Altrogge is an autobiographical account of his relationship with his father, pastor and songwriter Mark Altrogge. Stephen is a godly young man who writes as a brand-new, first-time father himself. Throughout the book he exhorts parents to a gospel-centered approach to parenting, and gets specific about the application of the gospel to raising children (Lulu).

Finally, what served me so well in the early days of parenting was a deepening understanding of the interrelationships of the Trinity. I often recommend Father, Son, and Holy Spirit: Relationships, Roles, and Relevance by Bruce Ware. In it, Ware describes how the manner in which the Trinity relate with one another has a direct impact on marriage, parenting, relationships, and more (Crossway).

Forgive me for intruding on your blog and thank you for reading my unsolicited advice. Of course, you can do much worse than reading Shepherding, but I would recommend you save it for a few years.

Blessings in Christ,

Mark Tubbs
mtubbs@discerningreader.com

Mama Matteo said...

hey sweet friend
thank you for such a sweet and encouraging message about our friendship. you know i agree wholeheartedly! GOD sure is great and has blessed me abundantly (eph 3:20) with our friendship and accountabiltiy time. i found the comment from mark tubbs interesting and am willing to read one of the other books now if you would like. i am open to whatever. see you soon
ashley