Parents,

I’d like for you to meet my friend and colleague, Karen Whiting, a true wordsmith. Karen is a mom and grandmom. She has a great love for young families and for the Lord.  She is my guest blogger today and is giving away a copy of her most recently published book, Growing a Mother’s Heart (she has written like a bazillion books!). If you would like to be part of the drawing and live in the contiguous U.S. please respond to the question at the end of the article. Wouldn’t this be a great Valentine’s gift for a mom?
Many Blessings,
Lori

Growing a Mother’s Heart
by Karen Whiting

When I held my first daughter, I never dreamed she would grow up to help many people both in church, teaching, disaster recovery, and other areas. As I held my first son, I saw no clue that he would grow up to be a rocket scientist, nor did I see that in the second son. They continually surprised me as I nurtured their growth. When we become a parent, we began a lifetime habit of observing our children and noting their strengths and weaknesses.

We can nurture the natural talents as we praise them for compassion, logic, or joy that exudes from them. We can also help them overcome natural, but selfish tendencies when we help them share, take turns, and overcome fears.

My husband and I met once a month for a pray and plan for our family. We shared our observations about each child. We chose one area for each that needed to improve and one achievement or talent to praise. Any more deficiencies might be overwhelming and any more praise could over inflate their egos. We also thought of ways to nurture natural talents such as music lessons for the child who always sang; soccer for a son who had great strength he could not control when angry; and letting the one with a strong personality who wanted control take charge of a task such as overseeing the diaper bag. Providing support and guidance mindfully helps a child develop their talents and interests.

Observing our child means listening, watching, and noticing how they are developing, what grabs their attention and focus, and how they are unique. It also means praying for wisdom to know how to parent each child. We prayed that God would show us his plans he made as he formed them relying on the scripture My frame was not hidden from You. When I was made in secret, And skillfully formed in the depths of the earth (Psalm 139:15).

One daughter loved playing with a toy bus but used it to put the people on and off and talk to them. A son came along and loved to pull the bus everywhere and study how the wheels turned as well as how the people could fly out when he raced. One was more people oriented and the other more mechanical oriented.

Some of our children liked to talk and others preferred to be quiet. Some needed speech therapy while others had different needs. We avoided comparing them or trying them to act like one another. Every child is a wonder!

What have you observed that is uniquely wonderful about each of your children that you can nurture?

Karen Whiting writes and speaks to grow tomorrow’s wholesome families with books for women, families, and children. A mom of five and grandmother, she enjoys family adventures like white water rafting in Australia, horseback riding in Jamaica’s ocean, and scuba diving off Bermuda’s coast as well as family meals, game days, crafting, and serving others.

 

Publisher’s Description
(found on Christianbook.com) 

Come along to find encouraging stories from past present and future moms to renew and grow your heart. Like the moms in these stories, no matter what mom season you’re in, we all desire to meet our children’s needs and become more loving and understanding. We live with struggles, busyness, and constant choices, yet treasure the wonderful moments of our children’s kisses, cuddles, and surprising words.

Each week contains a prayer, a devotion focused on a biblical mom, a devotion of a mom from history, and three contemporary devotions. The end of each devotional offers you a Daily Mom Step to challenge and encourage you as a mom. You’ll also experience a sprinkling of humorous quotes from young girls sharing their thoughts on becoming future moms. Our mom-stories reflect everyday experiences, as well as some of the harder moments, we have faced. Click here to head over to Christianbook.com to purchase your devotional.

© LoriWildenberg. All rights reserved.

About the Author

Lori Wildenberg is a licensed parent and family educator, parent coach, and co-founder of 1Corinthians13Parenting.com. She has written 5 books including Messy Journey: How Grace and Truth Offer the Prodigal a Way Home. and her most recent book The Messy Life of Parenting: Powerful and Practical Ways to Strengthen Family ConnectionsContact Lori for your next event or for parent consulting or parent training courses. Lori can also be found mentoring over at the MOMS Together Group on Facebook.

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