A Missional Writer-Mom in Arkansas
Tell me a little about yourself!I am a stay-at-home mom. My husband is a youth pastor and worship leader for our church. We have two boys - Breckon (23 months) and Kian (4 months).
What makes you a Missional Mom?
I was so encouraged by reading “The Missional Mom.” I had been frustrated for the last two years, because I had been trained in missions and theology in college, and I have such great passion for so many things that God is doing in our world. I couldn’t wait to do so many of the things that I had learned about to further God’s Kingdom. Then, three months before I graduated, my husband and I found out that we were pregnant (surprise!). 19 months after Breckon was born, along came Kian. My husband and I both felt that the Lord wanted me to stay home with our boys, but I became so frustrated that I had so much I wanted to do, but couldn’t because someone was always taking a nap (or desperately needed to!). We also live in the rural South (2 hours from the nearest large city), so opportunities to become involved with the homeless or helping with already-established ministries simply aren’t there in many places. Even recycling isn’t available! I love my boys and I am so thankful for the opportunity to stay home and pour into their lives, but I felt as if I had no ministry outlet for all of the things that I cared so deeply about. For a long time, I accepted every ministry opportunity that anyone threw at me – teaching Sunday School for the high school girls, childcare ministry, helping with the youth group, mentoring a teenage girl – I was gifted for none of it, and I felt frantic all the time. I was thankful for the birth of my second son to get a bit of a maternity leave from all of it!
Two months ago, my husband asked me to write the curriculum for a spiritual retreat/roadtrip he was planning for the youth group. I ate it up. I wrote four full sermons, study questions for each one, and group activities to build community among the group – he is actually on the trip now and says that it is all going so well. I was finally able to use my skills in a way I hadn’t expected – by writing about the very things I was passionate about. So I began a blog (http://myofferings.wordpress.com) to help educate the Church. I had one foot in the academic world by my education and what I read, and I had the other foot in the world of everyday church life. I sought to bridge the gap between the two. In the South, intellectualism and theology are regarded as highly suspicious. But many in my church have read my blog and then accidentally found out that they were getting a dose of theology! I write on a wide range of topics – racial reconciliation (a HUGE issue here), Bible translation, living justly in various ways, living counter-culturally, worship, family discipleship, etc. It has been such a fulfilling outlet to get many in our church (and elsewhere) to think critically about and discuss the traditions they have, the ideas they hold tightly to, and how we are called to live counter-culturally. Furthermore, writing helps my introverted self to process the many things I have running through my head all at once!
It may be a somewhat unconventional way to be a missional mom, but while my children are so small and we live in the middle of nowhere, it is the perfect way for me to connect the Church to the work that God is doing throughout the world, and to encourage them (and ourselves!) to participate.