29 Sep 2014

There’s Nothing Routine About The Routine: Book Club Week 4: Chps 8 & 9

“There is no part of our everyday, wash-and-repeat routine of kids and laundry and life and fights and worries and play dates and aching budgets and preschool orientations and work and marriage and love and new life and bedtime marathons that Jesus doesn’t look deep into and say, “That is mine. In Him all things hold together.”~ Surprised by Motherhood.


Welcome to week 4 of the Book Club. Here’s how it works each week:

Every Monday: Discussion video posted on the blog – feel free to leave your questions in the comments.

Every Wednesday: A discussion around some of your questions on the blog.

Every Friday: A Free, Useful, help-you-hold-onto-your-sanity Printable posted on the blog for all book club readers.

OK, grab yourself a cup of something warm and a few quiet minutes of mom-time alone and read along with me.


Chp 8: What Brave Looks Like

Chp 9: There’s Nothing Routine about the Routine

{If you haven’t already – you can pick up a copy over here.}


Surprised by Motherhood Book Club Oh Amanda

Chapters 8 & 9: I got to chat with the woman behind the hugely successful Advent devo for kids and families – Truth in the Tinsel – it’s WONDERFUL and comes with a craft for each day counting down to Christmas. I’m so delighted to have Amanda from Oh Amanda chatting about discovering the glory buried beneath all that seemingly ordinary of motherhood.

Click here if you can’t see the video.


Take a few moments today to think through the questions below and feel free to share your answers in the comments. Or use them as you talk through the book in your MOPS group or with your book club.

Chapter 8: What Brave Looks Like

  • What encourages you to “choose to embrace life” during the many trials of motherhood?
  • Describe a time when you had to endure a painful goodbye.  How did the Lord sustain you during that time?
  • Share about a season in your life when you felt “disoriented and disconnected,” as Lisa-Jo felt after her family’s move from South Africa to Michigan.  Have you ever had a time when you “did not sense God in it at all”?
  • In the video, Lisa-Jo and Amanda talk about the time in Lisa-Jo’s life when it felt like God kept saying, “No” to her prayers.  She shares in her book how God didn’t change His answer, but changed her instead.  Describe a time when God consistently answered “No,” to one of your prayers, and changed you instead.
  • How has God’s role as Father taught you about your own role as a parent?

Chapter 9: There’s Nothing Routine About the Routine

  • How can we do better at reminding ourselves and other moms of the truth that “in Christ, all things hold together” — even and especially in the trying parenting moments?
  • What practical steps can we take to daily remind ourselves of the bigger picture — that motherhood is a “sacred marriage of the mundane and the eternal”?


Scripture passages for this week:

“The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. He makes me lie down in green pastures; he leads me beside quiet waters; he restores my soul.” ~ Psalm 23: 1-2.

“He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together” ~ Colossians 1:17.

A few favorite quotes:

“Against all odds, knowing that sickness, sin, failure, and disaster lurk on the fringes every day, we choose to embrace life.  We open up ourselves — our bodies, our lives, and our futures — to the whims of another human being, and there is no going back.” (pp. 93-94)

“In the dark and the tired and the everydayness of those moments, I started to feel it — the weight of glory, the glorious ordinary that is a gift to us who are knee deep in a world where it can sometimes feel like we have lost all the parts of ourselves that we used to know ….
… Because ‘He is before all things, and in him all things hold together’ (Col. 1:17).


“There was a harmony rising from the eclectic collection of tasks every mother cycles through in a day — this sacred marriage of the mundane and the eternal.  The small directly related to the massive; kids walking around like so much eternity with skin on” (p. 118).

OK, YOUR TURN – share your answers and observations in the comments – let’s crowd source encouragement for this journey deep into the heart of motherhood together.

Just click here to leave a comment.



{ Leave a Comment }
  1. 2

    Lisa-Jo: I just rewatched our conversation again and laughed and cried AGAIN! Thank you for inviting me to chat w/you but thank you even more for your words that remind me to look to Jesus in motherhood, look to Him b/c it IS ALL HIS!


    • 3

      I truly wish you’d consider moving to VA so we could be neighbors and do this insane motherhood thing together :) Also, you could teach me crafts :)

  2. 4

    Another great video! Thank you! I’ve really enjoyed not only reading the book (it’s WONDERFUL!), but these videos have brought added depth and insight to my reading…perspectives on some of the issues that I hadn’t really thought about. I felt encouraged listening to you and Amanda chat in today’s video about those stages of motherhood that can feel tedious and like Groundhog Day and where the house feels “oppressive”… We are 16 months into life with 3 kiddos and while I thought life was crazy with two, boy oh boy, (or girl oh girl in my case…3 of them!) are things nutty!! Its feeling like a funky season of life where I’m trying to figure a lot of things out (in the midst of the craziness!) in regards to dreams, and expectations, etc. Thanks for the fun discussion and for taking the time to post all of the book club stuff (:

    • 5

      Thanks for reading along with us Lisa – and yes, I wish I’d had other moms to compare “Groundhog Day” notes with when mine were still so little. It’s such a relief just knowing you’re not alone. Somehow the reminder that dirty diapers don’t last forever is like a life preserver one mom can throw another :)

  3. 6

    this video is very encouraging and so uplifting! Exactly what I need these days! yes: my calling can be here and now, even though work is exhausting! back to work full time since september as a teacher, I am left with what feels like level 0 of Me time!!talk about dying to self expectations and dreams!! But I feel that God is telling me that it is ok, and that I must try my best to enjoy this time of “full time ” service both to my students and my kids. It is good to know that I am not alone feeling like it is groundhog day! I must do all this “with Jesus”! thank you Lisa-Jo: your book is my comfort book of the year! I especially love those chapters about Michigan!

    • 7

      Hey there Sophie – oh man, “full time service” indeed between a class of kiddos and kids at home! Sending you virtual chocolate cake and housecleaning service :) Yes, somehow knowing Jesus is right there in the thick of it with me is the most profoundly encouraging pick-me-up – and that He isn’t even remotely put off by my Cheerios-encrusted floor :) Hang in there sister, what a gift you are to so many tiny humans who will all have you as part of the memory of what made childhood so dear.


  1. […] that lovely screenshot? Today, Lisa-Jo Baker and I are chatting via Google Hangout about her book, Surprised by Motherhood! She’s 8 chapters into her book club right now and I hope you’ll take a few minutes to […]

  2. […] our Book Club as I sense so many of us trying to find the wonder in the routine of motherhood after Monday’s video, I needed to read this post again today. Maybe you did too. You can catch up on the whole Surprised […]

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