Tuesday, July 13, 2010
Today, we are joined by author Karen Pride to discuss her new book What the Bible Is All About For Moms. The interview below is some of her thoughts on the work. Enjoy and have a great Tuesday!
First, a little bit about me and how this book came to be…
So, let’s chat. I love chatting! And meeting new people, especially moms.
I am a mom, I have a mom, and I have worked with moms for years as a childbirth educator. And my writing style is much like my teaching style, telling things like they are with truth, humor and transparency.
I hated it when the instructor told me in Lamaze class that the contractions wouldn’t hurt. That was simply not true. And I vowed then and there that everything I did in life had to be truthful, but that sometimes the truth hurts so humor tempers lots.
Anyway, I have four kids, two adult sons, 28 and 25 and two younger daughters, eleven and thirteen, and for those who wonder about the gap, our third child was actually the only one truly, truly planned for the time she arrived, as she was adopted and brought home from Vietnam at five months of age.
My husband and I have been married for almost thirty years and met in college and have hung in and on ever since. We live in a small town in Central PA where he is a physician and I spend most of my time after three pm in the car.
The opportunity to write this book came to be as a result of a totally divine happenstance conversation I had with editor extraordinaire and grace dispenser Kim Bangs who invited me to submit a concept sheet and then proposal for this book.
Well, what about that soft spot for moms?
Moms have a tough job, don’t you think?
We do have the Bible, and not to minimize that as an instruction manual in right living by any stretch of the imagination, but it tends to come in after friends and family and all their free advice, that can be pretty costly…
So the question arose, how can we take Biblical wisdom and stories, role models and examples, and weave them into relevant (and funny) stories to encourage moms? I know I need encouragement! Everyone else’s kids may be perfect, but mine are NOT. And, shocker, neither am I. But guess what? Neither were many of the moms, ok, all of the moms in the Bible. Remember, Jesus has the corner on the market in the perfection department, so God has provided lots of examples of moms and how they dealt with different situations, similar to what current day moms deal with. Truly, there is nothing new under the sun. But, the story of the Bible is one of redemption, and moms need to remember that.
So, the opening story for Genesis, is titled, “E is for Eve and Epidurals.”
So, tell us a little bit about how the book is laid out, and who is Henrietta Mears?
The book is inspired by the writing of Henrietta Mears, renowned Bible Teacher from Hollywood Presbyterian Church in the 1940’s and on. She believed in making the Bible accessible to everyone, and wrote her hallmark publication, What the Bible is All About, and was the founder of Gospel Light Publishing, Regal’s (the publisher of this book) parent company. So Regal has now published two devotionals inspired by her writing.
The book is comprised of 66 chapters, one for each book of the Bible, each one bit sized for busy moms.
Each chapter starts off with a brief section entitled “Snapshot from Henrietta” which serves as a basic overview for that particular book of the Bible. It is then followed by selected Scriptures, also inspired by the writing of Miss Mears, with one specific Scripture from among her selections highlighted. This Scripture is one that has particular relevance to moms.
A short one sentence synopsis precedes each story under the heading, “Momento” and then is followed by the story under the heading, “Mama Mia” which focuses on a mom or mom theme.
Each story is followed by an encouragement, “Lightening the Mother Load” and then closes with questions for reflection under “Musings for Moms.”
Tell us a little about the stories; some of these titles make me laugh.
I am so glad they make you laugh. Every mom who has gone through labor can relate to labor pain. Well, it says there right in the Bible, women will experience pain in childbirth, so E is for Eve (the grande dame mama) and epidurals…
Then there are others, like, “Bath”-Is That for Bathing or Bathsheba? (Being noticed and admired…); “White Teeth and Plastic Surgery” (paying attention to appearances); “Mean Girls 101” (raising great daughters); and “Too Much Idling Will Ruin Your Engine” (Gossiping).
But the stories are relevant, honest, and will result in many nods of recognition. I am simply the scribe (oh, and experiencer of most of the stories, which are all true, although some names have been changed….)
But aren’t Moms too busy to read?
I will be the first mom to admit that we are busy…and I often fall asleep at night, sometimes drooling, while trying to read. But these chapters are bite sized, uplifting and include lots of Scripture, and can be read on the go. They are great for the car or purse. Plus, with the Bible overview, if you have friends who don’t think the Bible is particularly relevant, or not for them, this is perfect to introduce them to the Bible as the real deal!
Is this for all moms, or just young moms?
The challenges that moms face are really universal throughout their lifetime. It may be a different story, but ultimately it is the same script. It may be sleepless nights with a colicky baby, but problems and not understanding what is wrong continues with your kids through a lifetime (sorry, if you have young kids you probably didn’t just want to read this…)
It includes single moms, young moms, older moms, and moms who aren’t yet moms. There are struggles in yearning to be a mom and God’s answers and timing that are also written about with bittersweet honesty.
Have you had experience with tough times in parenting?
Absolutely. But because God is in the grand business of redemption, while it doesn’t condone wrongs, He will use mistakes to help us reach out to others. I have experienced crisis pregnancy, pregnancy loss, infertility, adoption and motherhood as a young fool, and older fogie…remember, we have seventeen years between number one and four. Our adult sons have had struggles (one son’s struggle with substance abuse is what paved the way to my relationship with Christ) and just real life issues, which would make it into my annual Christmas letter, and is why I no longer write one (no, I write a book instead…)
How has this book been redemptive to you?
That’s a great question, because the first draft of this manuscript was, well, a little let’s just say, sharp (ok, downright caustic in some places) and that showed me, through the eyes of another, that I still had significant healing to go through in my relationship with my own mother. And it is amazing how God has accomplished that, through allowing me to write, re write and then learn from Him through the writing of this book.
What kind of feedback have you had so far?
You know, it’s been really encouraging. Moms are relieved that they are not alone, that there is someone else who will acknowledge that they don’t have it all together (and don’t drive a clean car, either…) I have had so many women remark that they felt like I was just chatting with them over coffee, that the stories are so real to life. And that’s what we need isn’t it? Encouragement from others that we journey through life together, God loves us, will redeem our mistakes, and then enable us to share with the next sojourner on the journey of life.
What else would you like to share?
I would love for people to join the conversation, come stop by for a visit at my web site: www.kathypride.com, also known as The Mennonite Diva. Friend me on Facebook, although there I listed my “full” name for some unknown reason, Katherine Pride (so formal) follow my blog on the home page of my website, and just hang out.
Wait just one minute…did you say Mennonite Diva? Tell me about that.
Sure. First of all, my message of encouragement to women is that they all need to release their Inner Diva’s. They are Divinely Chosen, Inspiring, Valued and Amazing. I worship at a Mennonite Church where I also serve as the Outreach and Missions Director, and I love pink and having fun. So please drop by!