Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Habits and motherhood

I've been reading several books lately and one of them is Stepping Heavenward by Elizabeth Prentiss (which you can find for free online in many places - just google it).  I so recommend this book for any Christian - this is one of those books that makes you think about your faith; it's so real in depicting the journey to spiritual maturity.  I think it's a little better suited for a woman, though, because it's written from the perspective of one.  I honestly don't think my husband would enjoy it, even though he would get a lot out of it.

There are so many quotes from this book that have I've written down, but I narrowed it down to two to share with you.  They are both related to motherhood.
"If I had begun in earnest to serve God when I was as young as these children are, how many wrong habits I should have avoided; habits that entangle me now as in so many nets." (p.50)
This quote also has some Charlotte Mason (CM) undertones, with the reference of habits.  But it's so true!  We are creatures of habit and I believe wholeheartedly that it's our job as parents to do our best in training our children up in good habits.  And of those habits, what's more important than training our children to think of God with love?

It reminds me of a couple of quotes by CM:
"The poor man endures anguish, is torn asunder in the process of recovery which his parents might have spared him had they trained the early shoots which should develop by-and-by into the character of their child." (Volume 1, p.104)
The child "depends upon his parents; it rests with them to initiate the thoughts he shall think, the desires he shall cherish, the feelings he shall allow...from this initiation will result in habits of thought and feeling which govern the man--his character." (Volume 1, p.111)
These quotes are talking more about the character of a person, but I think they apply just as much to training our children in faith and loving and serving God.  Of course, we can't control every thought and decision our children make, but we can do our very best to train up our children, knowing that God is faithful in our efforts.

Oh what a task we have!

Oh yeah, I have another quote!
"A young girls' mother is her natural refuge in any perplexity." p.42 
This reminds me of how much of an influence I have on my two girls; how they look up to me and admire me.  How I hope to be to them what my own mother is to me - she is my best friend (besides my husband, of course, ha).  I can go to her with anything and she will listen and love me and provide wisdom.

What do you think?  I love to read your comments!

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  1. I love this. ""A young girls' mother is her natural refuge in any perplexity." How WONDERFUL that your mom is your best friend. :) I can only hope that my girls will say that someday.

    My WWW quote from North and South reminded me of CM, too. :)

    I wanted to comment on your Keeping Company post, too--I loved your bird! (our nature journals are pretty much ONLY birds right now..) ;) I also loved the bird your little one drew! SO CUTE! It reminded me of the animals that Fred draws in Life of Fred--are you familiar with that? Adorable!

    1. Yes, I just loved that quote - it went right into my commonplace :)

      Thank you about my bird, haha! And my other entry is a bird, too! There's only so much I can observe out my window during the winter, relishing in the warmth of my own home, haha. We've tried to get out, but I think the older you get, the more you just can't handle the cold. I'm actually working on another entry with pine cones (original, huh?) that we collected on a 15 minute outdoor excursion the other day. And I've heard of Life of Fred - math right?, but haven't seen the books.

  2. Thanks for linking in. I *love* Stepping Heavenward ... I saved a lot of quotes when I read it 15 years ago and hung them in my office as reminders (this was before children) I love your application tying it to CM. I haven't started delving there yet, but must *very *soon.

    1. Oh yes, I'm enjoying the book very much, too. I'm almost done with it. I actually haven't read all that much of CM yet, mostly only about outdoor time and habits. I kind of skip around, looking for what's applicable at the moment. I plan to begin officially homeschooling dd5 in the fall, so I'm working on reading more of it to prepare.

  3. I have never read Stepping Heavenward. Thank you for sharing these quotes. I think I need to purpose to begin reading it soon.