We’ve got a lot to look forward to in the second half of Doing Things Right, and Chapter Five—with it’s apt and beautiful figure skating illustration—sets it up for us. What can we expect from “Section Two”? Practical and helpful advice from Scripture that teaches couples: “how to achieve unity, how two become one” and prepares singles for the marriage relationship. There are also lots of great Shakespeare quotes, which makes me happy.
Your assignment is to read chapters six, seven and eight over the next three weeks. Book club posts will be suspended for two weeks as the entire Mahaney clan heads to Tennessee for our annual vacation. We’ll post on all three chapters during the first week in August when we return.
But don’t you go anywhere, for starting Monday Janelle will post a “Pic of the Day” from our vacation. While we can’t fit the entire girltalk audience into the lake house, we hope you enjoy the view through Janelle’s camera lens.
Finally, for a little weekend reading, you can pop on over to The Shepherd’s Scrapbook for a very kind review of Shopping for Time by a very pregnant Karalee Reinke. While you’re at it, pray for the safe delivery of her little one (if she hasn’t already had the baby by the time you read this post!).
This post is a bit out of place in the middle of July. It’s more at home in January—right around the first of the year. Actually, that was my problem this morning. It wasn’t the first of the year.
As I considered my current quiet time plan, I decided that I wanted to begin to read through the Bible during my daily devotions. Only, today is July 11, and as everyone knows, you are supposed to start these plans on January 1.
But God graciously inspired the good folks over at the ESV Bible blog to post a solution to my problem—today, July 11, of all days! Here is a plan that makes it easy to start reading through the Bible beginning today, or August 12, or September 13.
Whether you are reading through the Bible or studying a particular book (as I’ve been doing lately), may Psalm 119:18 be our prayer: “Open my eyes that I may behold wondrous things out of your law.”
For our new book, Shopping for Time, we were blessed to have a wonderful editor in Lydia Brownback. This was our first time working with Lydia, but we were so grateful for her skill, patience, and her eagerness to help us publish a book that truly “sounded” like us. Lydia embodies the selfless editor whose heart is to truly serve the author.
Given her familiarity with our book, we were so honored when she asked to interview us on her own (cleverly titled) blog—The Purple Cellar. Check out parts one and two, and be sure to read her other insightful posts as well.
This morning, I woke up thinking about our dear friends Robin and
Clara Boisvert. Thirty years ago today, they were married. Sadly, I
don’t consistently remember all of my friends’ anniversaries. But I
rarely forget Robin and Clara’s. That’s because I was in labor with my
second child during their wedding ceremony.
waited until after the ceremony was over to make her entrance into this
world. Not only would I have been disappointed to miss Robin and
Clara’s wedding, but CJ was performing the ceremony!
remember sitting on the back pew of Christ Church in Washington, D.C.
as the contractions were coming with persistent regularity. They were
just far enough apart that I knew I still had time to make it through
the wedding; but as soon as CJ concluded his responsibilities we drove
straight to the hospital. Kristin was born in the wee hours that next
But more than just the memories of that day thirty
years ago, I’ve also been pondering God’s faithfulness in the
intervening years. God has been faithful to us. He’s been faithful to
the Boisverts. And He’s been faithful in our friendship—allowing us to
serve together in ministry these past three decades. He’s been faithful
to our children. We each have married children who are good friends
with each other and grandchildren who go to playgroup together.
Bible regularly exhorts us to remember, to think about, to ponder the
faithfulness of God (As in Psalm 103:2—“Forget not all his benefits.”).
You may not remember what you were doing thirty years ago today (unless
you were in labor too!) but you certainly can recall the events of this
past year, month or even week and find many evidences of the goodness
of God. There are the blessings of family and friends. But most of all,
there is the perfect love of Christ, revealed on the cross 2000 years
P.S. Happy 30th Anniversary Robin and Clara!
P.P.S. Happy 30th Birthday tomorrow my dear Kristin!
My husband (who takes a better picture than me) snapped a photo of this rather self-contradictory sign he saw in the little town of Sperryville, VA. May God bless your weekend! Nicole (for Mom, Kristin, and Janelle)
This chapter is a winsome polemic for “A Clear Appreciation of Our Complementarity.” In a culture where biblical manhood and womanhood are not appreciated, but rather maligned, it is vitally important that we fight to maintain our own appreciation of the way that God has made us to glorify Him.
We must also pass this value on to our children.
On page 67, Ensor quotes Wendy Shallit, who observes that her generation learned their distorted view of manhood and womanhood “with our ABC’s.” So, what are our children learning from us?
It’s never too early to begin teaching our children about God’s design for men and women. We’re constantly telling Jack, “That’s what boys do!” Boys hold the door for the girls. Boys play with army men. Boys are tough. And boys aren’t better than girls, we explain. Just different. And we celebrate the differences.
If you are the parent of a teenager, consider reading and discussing this chapter with your son or daughter. Check their “appreciation-o-meter” when it comes to biblical manhood and womanhood and where necessary, remind them of God’s perspective.
In obedience to the opening verse of this chapter, let’s help our children not be conformed to this world, but transformed by the renewing of their mind. Let’s teach them, along with their ABC’s, to love being boys and girls.
Calling all those from ages 10-20! Alex and Brett Harris from The Rebelution Blog have taken their passion to see teens rebel against the low expectations of our culture and follow God’s plan for their lives on tour! Al Mohler says of these guys, “The Rebelution is one of the most encouraging developments I have seen in many years. Alex and Brett are young men of conviction, passion, and courage. Their call to their generation is faithful to the gospel and honoring to Christ. The Rebelution is a sign of hope—and a call to action.” They have three more conferences planned over the next several months. Check out their conference website for all of the details.
Today, we’re pleased to announce that our little book, Shopping for Time has been released. We are so grateful to God for the opportunity to partner with the wonderful folks at Crossway Books. To learn more about the book, you can read a review by Leslie Wiggins of Tim Challies’ Discerning Reader, as well as an interview with the four of us. We hope this humble volume will serve to encourage, inspire, and assist you as you seek to glorify God with your use of time.
Like all children, my sisters and I would often ask our parents to tell us stories: about their childhood, how they met, and especially the silly things they did before they became grown ups and didn’t do silly things anymore (like how Dad convinced the other kids on his block to do his paper route for him, or when Mom and Uncle Grant threw rocks at the bees nest and Mom left Uncle Grant—who couldn’t run fast enough—behind to get stung). My favorite—and after thirty-one years I still haven’t tired of hearing it—is the story of my dad’s conversion. Now, you too can listen to my dad tell his story of God’s electing grace on YouTube (who’d have guessed?):
You can read a very kind review of my dad’s book Living the Cross Centered Life (which includes more of his story!) at Monergism.com.