I’ve been reading a ton of literature in the realm of marriage and family for my upcoming class assignment (would love your prayers please!) and I’ll bet you can guess one of the ladies’ I’ve been reading… it starts with a “c” and ends with a “arolyn Mahaney”. I love this woman, her daughters, and her encouraging inspiration towards righteousness. On their blog called girltalk, there is a helpful resource page which divides loads of their blog posting into specifically labeled pdf files with each file containing all posts related to a common topic. I have been captivated by their truths and practical suggestions. I wanted to include a few of posts on a topic which I have personally been trying to overcome: distraction (see my previous posts for details)! Here is what these sweet women have to say:

A Question of Priorities
by Carolyn Mahaney
So how do we walk carefully through the season of mothering young
children? How do we know if we’re distracted or focused on the right
things?
We need to determine biblical priorities for our season, and then
consistently evaluate whether or not we are living according to those
priorities.
For moms with young kids, it’s pretty simple. Three non-negotiables top
the list:
1. The gospel
2. Your husband
3. Your children
Ask yourself: Am I preserving these biblical priorities as my top priorities?
Then consider other activities—from your daily Internet or cell phone
habits or hobbies or pleasures like reading or television or hanging out
with friends—to significant endeavors such as a home business or serving
opportunity.
Ask yourself:
Does my time spent on ________ cut into my time for consistent practice
of the spiritual disciplines?
Does _________ hinder me from putting my husband’s needs first?
Does my investment in ________ distract me from the teaching, training,
discipline, care and encouragement of my children?
Does my level of involvement in_______ cause me to be rushed, hurried,
distracted or anxious in caring for my family and training my children?
If we’re consistent at checking our facebook wall but not in prayer, or if
we’re attentive to our etsy site or blog but not our children, then we need to
make a change.
What eliminating distractions looks like, tomorrow.
First Things First
by Carolyn Mahaney
If less important activities are infringing upon more important priorities,
we need to make a change. But what does this look like?
Does this mean that moms with young children can’t have a life beyond
warming milk bottles, reading bedtime stories, and repeating endless “no
touch”es and “stop fighting”s and “sit still”s?
Of course not! But given the significant amount of time it takes to
effectively teach, train, discipline, care for and encourage young children,
you won’t have time for much else for a while. Motherhood is and should
consume a majority of your time and attention
So how do we eliminate distractions to this primary responsibility?
Let me answer with an illustration: A while back, I decided I would use the
five minutes it took for my coffee to brew each morning to check my email,
blogs I enjoy, etc. Before I knew it, five minutes turned into twenty minutes
and my time with the Lord was shortened or rushed.
So, I set up a boundary for myself: no email or blogs until I have my quiet
time, my husband has left for work, and I’ve sent my son off to school in a
peaceful manner.
This isn’t legalism. I was simply taking measures to protect the most
important from the less important. I want to keep first things first.
So what structures do you need to set up in your life to keep the training of
your children a priority? Maybe you only look at email over naps or get up
early to work on your home business. Maybe more drastic action is
necessary. You may need to put a project on hold or set aside your hobby
for a season.
Whatever it takes, let me encourage you to clear away all distractions.
There’s a time for every season under heaven, and the time to train your
children in the ways of the Lord is now.

Search by Janelle Bradshaw
As mom pointed out on Monday, our mothering mission is “grave and
vast.” It can often seem like an overwhelming assignment. That’s because it
is. We aren’t called to figure this out on our own. We need help. We need
the wisdom of others. So let’s go and get it.
Search the Scriptures! Prayerfully seek mothering wisdom from the Bible.
What does God’s Word have to say about parenting these little ones? We
need to develop biblical convictions about our role and responsibilities.
As I’m typing this post at my computer, my eyes keep darting to my little
note-card with all my “Caly Scriptures.” I keep this note-card in a
prominent place to remind me of my responsibility before the Lord, and to
encourage my soul with the promised fruit of obedience.
Search Out Others! My mom probably wants to hide when she hears me
coming. She has been barraged with my parenting questions (sometimes
the same ones over and over) for the last three years. The Lord has also
blessed me with a church full of “second moms” who have much wisdom
and experience.
Friends, we have to take the initiative. The “older” women in our churches
would love to share their wisdom—all we have to do is ask. If necessary,
let’s bang down doors and beg for help. Let’s keep these ladies busy!
Search Good Books! The Lord has also blessed us with the wisdom of
others in the form of books. I was never a big reader until I became a mom.
Now I read any biblical parenting book that I can get my hands on. Then I
read it again.
If you don’t know where to begin, check out the four books that we
recommended last week (here and here). They will get you off to a great
start.
This parenting task takes work and effort. But the reward is well worth it.
One of my favorite “Caly-verses” at the moment is Proverbs 29:17:
“Discipline your son, and he will give you rest; he will give delight to your
heart.”
Caly has helped me see my desperate need for help, but she has brought
much delight to my heart. As I was leaving her room the other night after
putting her to bed, I heard her little voice say, “Mom, I love you very so
much.”
Pure delight!
Strength for a Weary Mom
by Kristin Chesemore
We began this series by asking: “How does the mom with young kids make
the best use of her time when she doesn’t feel like she has any time?” We’ve
looked at a few essential deals for this busy season:
1. Preach the gospel to yourself
2. Prize your husband
3. Parent all the time
4. Pay attention
5. Pursue help in parenting.
I want to close the week by reminding you of one of my favorite promises
from God’s Word. Galatians 6:9 says: “Let us not grow weary of doing
good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.”
This verse was a source of strength to me when I was carrying my one year
old, chasing my two year old and correcting my four year old. I didn’t feel
like I was bearing much fruit, but this verse provided faith for the future.
My kiddos are now five, six and nine, and the challenges are a little
different. I’m dealing with arguments between my five and six year old and
the heart issues of my nine year old. But I’m still holding on to this
wonderful promise.
May I encourage you to hold onto this verse as you seek to faithfully sow
into the lives of your little ones? The harvest won’t come today. And it
won’t come tomorrow. Maybe not even next year or the year after that.
But we must be faithful to sow today. Faithful to train. Faithful to teach.
Faithful to discipline. Faithful to love. Or, as it says in this passage, faithful
to “do good.” And we must trust God that He will fulfill His promises, that
we will reap a harvest in due season if we do not give up.
My expectations are not for today, or even tomorrow–but my hope is in
God who has promised that, someday, my labors will bear fruit for Him.
Even though my body is weary, my soul gains new strength from this
promise.
I pray it strengthens you as well.*

By Carolyn Mahaney, Nicole Whitacre, Kristin Chesemore & Janelle Bradshaw. Copyright 2009 Girl Talk
Blog. http://www.girltalkhome.com

I hope you were as encouraged I was- if so, keep reading their site! Feel free to comment concerning what you enjoyed!

Thanks for reading!

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