The High Calling of Motherhood

God has assigned a nobler work to woman than merely to parallel man’s activities. There is no more pitiful person in the world than the woman who “has it all together” in business but whose family has fallen apart. She is the epitome of energy, organisation, talent, and efficiency – only her children have not turned out well.

Loneliness and non-recognition attend motherhood for a time. But that is the perspective of this world only. How does the Judge compare the socialite, the dynamic business “success” in comparison with the mother who is selflessly training children with an eye of faith fixed on a spiritual kingdom and her hope firmly fixed upon the Lord? Some will think this is an emotional appeal to put women down once again. Rather, it is a conviction that many women have abandoned their highest dignity and hope for lesser things.

What is involved in motherhood? After birth pangs bring children into this world, there come years of life pangs. It is a mother’s task and privilege to oversee the forging of a personality in her sons and daughters. For this she must set a tone in the home which builds strong character. Hers it is to take great Christian principles and practically apply them in every-day affairs – doing it simply and naturally. It is her responsibility to analyse each child mentally, physically, socially, spiritually. Talents are to be developed, virtues must be instilled, faults are to be patiently corrected, young sinners are to be evangelised. She is building men and women for God. Results may not be visible until she has laboured for fifteen or twenty years. Even when her task ends the true measure of her work awaits the full maturity of her children. Moses would be much more than an Egyptian rebel and an obscure shepherd, but Jochebed would not live to observe the consequences of her motherhood.

–Walter J. Chantry, The High Calling of Motherhood

Reflections on Motherhood

For the past 15 months, my husband and I have been blessed with a wonderful daughter. We see her grow up in front of our eyes each day and we realize how much we need God’s grace moment by moment and more so in the coming months and years to come.  

She gives us so much joy. But she is perfectly capable of causing the opposite at the same time. Sometimes I don’t know whether I should laugh or cry when I see my own personality reflected by my daughter. It’s true what some people say that you see your worse in your own child. O, how I’ve proven this time and again!
 
Being a parent sure helped me understand the doctrines of original sin and total depravity better.  It also helped me appreciate the beauty of Gospel better.
 
And can it be that I should gain
An interest in the Savior’s blood?
Died He for me, who caused His pain—
For me, who Him to death pursued?
Amazing love! How can it be,
That Thou, my God, shouldst die for me?
Amazing love! How can it be,
That Thou, my God, shouldst die for me?

Celebrating Advent

It’s been 16 days since Katie was born and I’m halfway through my GeLai, a monthlong traditional Chinese practice of postpartum care (more on that next time). One thing that I am looking forward to, after my GeLai and even more as a church planter’s wife, is to attend the soft-launch of the church planting project that my husband and I have been involved in for more than a year now. We’re very excited about starting weekly services next year and we’re doing a preview next month beginning with the Advent theme. Everyone is invited!

ImageIt’ll certainly be a milestone for the church planting project and we truly praise God for guiding us all the way. Lord willing, December 2 will be Katie’s first worship service and she will be hearing her Daddy preach then.

 

Bundle of Joy

I haven’t been blogging for the past months since I’ve been preoccupied with morning sicknesses, layette shopping and birthing classes. Yes, I was busy being pregnant.

But alas, the long wait is finally over and I have given birth to a 7.2 lb baby girl last Wednesday (7 November 2012) at 11:41 in the evening. We named our precious covenant child, Katharina Bryn, after the wife of the German reformer, Martin Luther and of course, after her dad, James Bryner. We fondly call her Katie. We hope that she will one day be a great “brewmistress” like Katie von Bora herself! Ha!

God was indeed gracious to have given me the strength to go through Normal Spontaneous Delivery (NSD) without epidurals. I’m really happy that my mom encouraged me to go au naturale.

I guess that means this blog will turn over a new leaf… again.

I asked the Lord, that I might grow

by John Newton

I asked the Lord, that I might grow
In faith, and love, and every grace;
Might more of His salvation know;
And seek more earnestly His face.

Twas He who taught me thus to pray,
And He, I trust has answered prayer;
But it has been in such a way,
As almost drove me to despair!

I hoped that in some favored hour,
At once He’d answer my request;
And by His love’s constraining power,
Subdue my sins–and give me rest!

Instead of this, He made me feel
The hidden evils of my heart;
And let the angry powers of hell
Assault my soul in every part!

Yes more, with His own hand He seemed
Intent to aggravate my woe!
Crossed all the fair designs I schemed,
Blasted my gourds–and laid me low!
“Lord, why is this!” I trembling cried,
“Will you pursue your worm to death?”
“This is the way,” the Lord replied,
“I answer prayer for grace and faith.”

“These inward trials I employ,
From self and pride to set you free;
And break your schemes of earthly joy,
That you may seek your all in Me!”