a lesson

Disclaimer: There is nothing wrong with parenting books. There is nothing wrong with parenting books written by Christian authors. There is nothing wrong with me. The author of this post is not trying to discourage you from reading the parenting books that you are reading and enjoying.
Go Jets!
Paging through the book Confident Parenting, I was captivated by a chapter called, "The lesson of the Shema". Let it be known that I have a deep rooted affection and interest in and for the Jewish faith, and was therefore intrigued by this Hebrew-sounding word. I am not Jewish (although i do wish i could have stepped on and broken a wine goblet at my wedding ceremony), they are however, an incredible people and have many family-based traditions that I completely respect and love.
SHEMA. The word caught my attention.
But what does that have to do parenting and/or confidence?
Here's a portion of what I read:
 "Shema-is a Hebrew word from the Old testament. It means to listen or to hear. The Shema is the creed of the Hebrews, and it is found in the sixth chapter of Deuteronomy. It teaches loyalty to God and how to transmit faithfulness to our children.

Hear. O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul, and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about the when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the door frames of your houses and on your gates. 
Deut. 6:4-9

The Shema contains one of the most important lessons for a family. Having faithfulness pass from generation to generation occurs when parents take the lead to talk about and live out their authentic faith in the most natural of settings for their children-the home". Confident Parenting Burns. Jim. pp56-57,  Bethany House Publishers.

There are SO MANY parenting books out on the market. SO many.
And I've never been afraid to say how much I loathe them (or read them with trepidation). Mostly because they all have great, very practical, "hands-on" ideas....that unfortunately only serve to increase my guilt, and my insecurities about my job as a parent. Now of course, that is a PROBLEM. That is an ISSUE. That is why the parenting books aren't helping.....ME.....because I open them with an ATTITUDE.

Yet somehow this book (or chapter) is different. I'm wondering if the words encouraged me, simply because of its simplicity and familiarity?  NO steps to follow, no ingredients to dig up in my tired heart, and no impractical expectations to fill. Only a reference to the bible. The Holy book that I so dearly love! And I have a copy already...I don't even need to order it on-line! The bible is truly where all the answers to parenting are, I guess I knew that already....but I needed to be guided there once again. I needed the reminder.

Our family/my family, needs simple, uncomplicated formula's to live by. Even though I lOVE to print them off from the blogisphere;  TOO many steps, charts, or guides/formulas to remember....and we fail and get discouraged. I see it in myself, my husband and my children.
Loving God, turning to HIM at all times, looking to him before solving the big and small problems....takes the pressure off of me to be a super parent. When I fail, I won't be as hard on myself because I'm trusting God. HE should be the source of my strength and wisdom.

I really wish I didn't need reminders of His great promises. I wish i would have an unfailing knowledge of them. Yet, I know I'm not alone in feeling that way...and I gather that is why it says in Deuteronomy, "Tie them as symbols to your hands and bind them on your foreheads"....in other words, do NOT forget!

This all  may actually inspire me to start the book "Confident Parenting",  from the beginning and finish it to the end (don't count on it)! Perhaps I'll just keep practicing saying the word Sh' MA out loud, and work on memorizing Deuteronomy. 6:4-9! 

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

OK Christine - that is so neat! Just tonight- not even an hour ago - as I was still completing the ever lingering bedtime routine - I thought about the Deuteronomy passage. And I did think about it with both sadness and hope. Sadness at the missed opportunities, but also hope that God will provide the words for all the future opportunities. Those verses just help to refocus and go "oh yah - that's what I am to be doing here".
I just thought it was too neat to come down and read your blog with the same verses!!
love, Jeri-Anne

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