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The Ministry of Motherhood: Following Christ's Example in Reaching the Hearts of Our Children
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The Ministry of Motherhood: Following Christ's Example in Reaching the Hearts of Our Children

4.24 of 5 stars 4.24  ·  rating details  ·  578 ratings  ·  59 reviews
Because Motherhood Isn’t Just a Job. It’s a Calling.

A mother’s day is packed with a multitude of tasks that require energy and time: preparing meals, washing clothes, straightening and cleaning the house, and caring for children. These jobs all are necessary and crucially important. But in the dailyness of providing for a child’ s physical, emotional, and social needs, v
Kindle Edition, 224 pages
Published (first published January 20th 2004)
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Sara H
Jun 12, 2012 Sara H rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: All Christian moms
If you're looking for a step-by-step approach to parenting, this isn't the book you are looking for. Sally Clarkson's "The Ministry of Motherhood" is a book of encouragement for mother's designed to show them ways to reach their children's hearts. There are plenty of Christian books out there giving us specifics on how to dole out the discipline and keep our kids in line, but far too often, imo, these books focus mainly on outward behavior, and pay only lip service to the core of the matter, nam ...more
I read this via an online book club and found it wasn't what I was looking for. This book is geared toward mothers of young children and not for mothers of teens and adult children. I abandoned the book at the midway point as it did not meet my needs in this stage of my life. This would be beneficial to mothers of young children who are interested in homeschooling.
Good book with reminders and tips of how to encourage the gifts of: grace, inspiration, faith, training, and service in our children. As another reviewer stated "the narrative licence of the scriptural retellings" at the beginning of each section bothered me.
Amanda Tranmer
Full of great advice, life examples and modeled behaviors, verses, example prayers and workbook style application summaries at the end of each section. The application workbook questions are vital. I finished reading the book before finishing all the workbook area because I found them challenging, requiring self-examination and thoughtful meditation. That's a good thing, just also time-consuming and at night, in bed, when I have time to read, I don't always want a pen and paper in my hands. Work ...more
Jessica Snell
"The Ministry of Motherhood", by Sally Clarkson, is a gift. A pure gift. I'm so grateful for this book.

Now here, full disclosure, before I go on with the gushing, let me tell you what I didn't like about this book. Each section starts with an imaginative retelling of part of the gospels, and I disliked that part. But I think it's primarily a stylistic preference. I only mention it in case someone else like me picks this up and also dislikes that feature. Don't worry about it. Skip it if you like
Sally Clarkson is so inspirational. The Ministry of Motherhood is the first book of her's I have read but it is not the first I have heard of her. I follow her on Facebook, Twitter and on her blog I Take Joy. So when I had the opportunity to read this book I jumped on it. I had been wanting too but hadn't had a chance.

In The Ministry of Motherhood: Following Christ’s Example in Reaching the Hearts of Our Children Sally (I feel like we could be on a first name basis) walks us through a life of mo
I really enjoyed reading this book, and was encouraged as well as challenged through it. While I didn't necessarily agree with everything in this book, not necessarily in the parenting realm but more in thinking about some of the spiritual truths as I understand them, I still think it will prove useful in my own life. I think it's a great place to start, for those moms who need a starting place (or a starting over kind of place), to create an idea of how they want to go about their motherhood st ...more
Keren Threlfall
In The Ministry of Motherhood: Following Christ’s Example in Reaching the Hearts of Our Children, Sally Clarkson looks at Jesus’ pattern of teaching and training of the disciples and makes application to the discipling of our children through the ministry of motherhood.

Sally divides the main portion of her book into five parts–five “gifts”–each comprised of four chapters and then a study and discussion section at the end of each part.

Part One: The Gift of Grace
1. Out of a Boat–a Model for Grace
Lori Porten
This book was very encouraging. In the last chapter, the author wrote, "In the end, the measure of my success as a mother will not be how well I have taught my kids or cared for them but whether I have been faithful in helping them respond to God's call on their lives. ...... Jesus isn't limited by the personalities of our children or by our own personalities or by our education or life skills or lack of the same. He is only limited by our trying to do his will our way, in our flesh. ... If we ...more
Sarah Joseph
A good book, but I have reservations. I am a LCMS mother, and see my highest calling in this life as one of bearing and raising children for the glory of God. I do not believe that I need another "ministry", or need to be constantly at an organized church event to be a good mother, or even a disciple of Christ. While this book (especially the last chapter) explored the idea of vocation, Clarkson constantly frames motherhood in terms of a "ministry", thereby implying that if you do NOT have time ...more
Clarkson writes about motherhood as a season of life where the mother intentionally plans out how to train and disciple her children. She writes about giving children a foundation of a biblical world-view, proper understanding of the real Christ, showing them what real faith looks like and giving them a pattern to follow. She describes her personal experience raising four children in the Lord outlining the acronym GIFT, in the book as: Gift of Grace, Gift of Inspiration, Gift of Faith, Gift of T ...more
This book is fabulous! I *loved* it. It gives great examples of how to direct your kids to live a Christ-centered life. I love her examples and her GIFTS (Grace, Inspiration, Faith, Training, Service)outline. She even gives homework at the end of the chapter -- points to ponder and questions to ask yourself. It inspired me to do things a little differently with my children to make sure they feel God's love and grow their testimony of our Saviour.

Upon completing the book, I felt motivated to do l
Alicia Wood
I enjoyed this book about motherhood. It didn't fill me with mommy guilt but it did give me some high goals to seek for in mothering my own children. Clarkson talks about how the word GIFTS can be a guide for mothers to teach their children about grace, inspiration, faith, training and service. I did not particularly love the parts where she told Bible stories in her own words because they seemed a little embellished but I felt like the questions to ponder at the end of each section were fantast ...more
This was not quite what I expected. It was a bit too spiritual for my taste and not at all practical, in my opinion, which is something I look for in parenting materials-practical application. I didn't give this book a mere one star for the reason that the author has good points and good intentions, but the book itself isn't written particularly well and the way she presents her points truly annoyed me- she presented her family in such an idealistic way, it seemed almost fake. It's hard to imagi ...more
I just finished re-reading this book again. So much in here that I could re-read it every month and still come away with some new insight. So real, so practical, so good!
Vicki Riddiough
This book took me much to long to get through, but not because it was boring or anything. It offers up so much good stuff to "chew" on; life got in the way; etc. I picked it up again this fall & I plan to revisit a few chapters again after the holidays are over. I recommend this book for any mom who desires to teach Biblical principles their children. Even though I grew up in a Christian home, I'm surprised at how much does not come naturally in regards to passing on Biblical values & pr ...more
It's not that I want to complain about this book, because there's certainly nothing worthy of that. It just wasn't my cup of tea. There were some very encouraging thoughts, and a few real gems, but the narrative license in the Scriptural retellings made me a little uncomfortable, and much of the book was episodes of the author's family. No doubt many of the vignettes from the Clarkson home were more illustrative of the author's intended point than just a theoretical/practical explanation would h ...more
I read this book as part of a women's Bible study group. There were times when it was hard for me to read due to Clarkson's writing style, of which I am not really a fan. I did not particularly enjoy her retelling of various parts of Jesus' life and ministry. I understand why she did it but that doesn't make the writing any better. However, I did feel that she made some good points as far as how to apply Jesus' ministry to motherhood. I think this book really helped me see how motherhood is a mi ...more
"Then the obvious answer struck me: Jesus was the model I was looking for."
This was a book I read with a book club. We started in April and are just finishing this week. That was hard for me to take so long to get through a book. I enjoyed the questions at the end of every fourth chapter and liked to discuss them and put some of the suggestions to use. I did think she had some great ideas on raising children and doing things God's way. I think this is a great book for all the moms out there that are looking for hands on ways to raise children God's way. It also helps t ...more
Amanda Mckinley
Favorite author. Jesus-focused inspiring call to motherhood.
Another good book from Sally Clarkson discussing how we can impart the gifts of grace, inspiration, faith, training and service to our children. I enjoyed reading the ways in which she had done this with her own children and the many descriptive passages about her own life. My only criticism of the book was that it wasn't as engaging as her other book "The Mission of Motherhood" and her retelling and adaptation of the bible stories were not always done well and didn't come across as interesting. ...more
Good, thought-provoking stuff, for the most part. We read this in my St. Mark's Mom's Group, and it sparked some good discussions. She does give some concrete examples of how to teach your children to follow Christ in their own lives; she does not underestimate our power of leading by example, and also encourages us to follow Jesus more closely in our own lives. I might pick up some of her other books too. Easy to read and digest, but leaves you thinking about her concepts long after you've clos ...more
Carissa Norris
Sally does such a good job making it clear what our call as mothers is. I love the GIFTS acronym because it is easy to follow and remember. I also absolutely love Sally's gentle way of relating to her kids. It's great to read about a mother who can move gently in her children's lives. As a Christian, I found her advice invaluable and an uplifting reminder of what I am working to accomplish in my child's life and not on my own--with God's total interaction!
Jennifer Honeycutt
This was my first Sally Clarkson book I have read and I hope to read many more of her books. She is very inspirational and such a strong woman of faith. Her stories were relatable and encouraging, for the most part (sometimes her 4 children seemed almost "too good to be true"). I recommend this book for any mother as a practical guide of how to raise your child(ren) to be followers of Christ.
You have to know what to expect when reading Clarkson. If you are ready for a serious, religious view on parenting and how to incorporate what she views as the important elements of the Christian life, then you'll really like this book. I find her to be a voice of experience and while we don't always agree, I found the book both interesting and useful.
Erin Butler
A wonderful read for all Christian mothers to remind us that caring for our children is not just one thing we do among many others. Rather, it is truly a God-given ministry in which we are called to raise up a generation of those who know and love the Lord! Mothers will be encouraged that what they do day-in and day-out is part of a higher calling!
Jul 25, 2010 Anissa rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Moms
Read this book with some of my amazing MOP Moms this summer. Sparked a ton of meaningful discussion, and even more deep thoughts about my ministry as a mom. With God's grace and guidance, I hope that some of the ideas will "stick" prompting me to action, and ultimately leaving an eternal impact on my kids!
Not quite what I was expecting, as it is laid out in more of a devotional sort of format. But as a mother of a young one, I can appreciate this since it makes it easier to get through and it certainly doesn't take away from the thought-provoking and convicting content. A must read for any mother, I think.
I would give this book a 3.5. I really love Sally Clarkson's writing style, but I definitely enjoyed her book "Desperate" much more. This book is full of good ideas to make the Gospel clear to our children, but I felt she told just a few too many personal stories from her children.
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  • A Mother's Heart: A Look at Values, Vision, and Character for the Christian Mother
  • Sacred Parenting: How Raising Children Shapes Our Souls
  • Give Them Grace: Dazzling Your Kids with the Love of Jesus
  • Families Where Grace Is in Place
  • Desperate: Hope for the Mom Who Needs to Breathe
  • Heartfelt Discipline: The Gentle Art of Training and Guiding Your Child
  • Grace Based Parenting: Set Your Family Free
  • Good and Angry: Exchanging Frustration for Character …in You and Your Kids!
  • Don't Make Me Count to Three
  • Spirit-Led Parenting: From Fear to Freedom in Baby's First Year
  • Family Driven Faith: Doing What It Takes to Raise Sons and Daughters Who Walk with God
  • Instructing a Child's Heart
  • Loving the Little Years: Motherhood in the Trenches
  • Loving Our Kids on Purpose: Making a Heart-To-Heart Connection
  • A Mom After God's Own Heart: 10 Ways to Love Your Children
  • Wild Things: The Art of Nurturing Boys
  • Everyday Talk: Talking Freely and Naturally about God with Your Children
  • Making Brothers and Sisters Best Friends: How to Fight the Good Fight at Home
Sally Clarkson is the mother of four grown children who walk with God. She is the author of many books, including Desperate: Hope for the Mom Who Needs to Breathe and The Mission of Motherhood. She is the heart of her personal blog, a popular speaker, and the director of Mom Heart Ministry, an initiative to inspire, encourage, and restore moms’ hearts to God’s heart for motherhood.
More about Sally Clarkson...
The Mission of Motherhood: Touching Your Child's Heart for Eternity Seasons of a Mothers Heart Dancing with My Father: How God Leads Us into a Life of Grace and Joy You Are Loved: Embracing the Everlasting Love God has for You The Mom Walk: Keeping in Step with God's Heart for Motherhood

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“—A MOTHER’S PRAYER— Father of Encouragement Thank you for taking the time to show love to your disciples by affirming and encouraging them. Help us remember that our well-aimed words will carry life to the hearts of our children. Teach us to extol their positive characteristics whenever we can and to resist the temptation to use words only for correction. Give us lips that speak grace and that show the heart of your love through the things we say. Amen” 0 likes
“Perfection is not a standard he requires of me as a mother, for his grace extends to me as well as to my children. My heartfelt trust in him will be the fuel that energizes my days as I see him draw my children through this gift that will serve them their whole lives.” 0 likes
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