January 3, 2013

Desperate - A Review

When our oldest was 3, our third child was born. Caring for a 3 year old, an almost 2 year old, and a newborn all at once was challenging.

Now, over ten years and another child later, I look back in slight amazement. Certainly, I did not do it as well as I could have, and I can honestly echo Sally Clarkson's sentiments expressed in Desperate of wanting to have more children because now I know so much more and could do a better job.

Alas, experience is the best teacher, and wise words from someone who has been there, done that, a great encouragement for the journey. Such is the new book, Desperate, co-written by Sarah Mae and Sally Clarkson.

Book Description from the Publisher
Read the publisher's description here.

The Book Set-Up

Overall, the book is divided into three main sections. The initial section discusses the ideals of motherhood and current cultural perceptions. Another section deals with the realities of motherhood. Finally, the last section discovers what motherhood could be when we as moms lean into God, and follow His individual plans for our lives and families.

Chapters are a joint effort. An email exchange serves as one page introductions for each chapter. Sarah Mae expresses a concern or problem, and Sally addresses the issue by sharing from her own mothering experiences. Then, each author writes several pages related to the topic. Personal experiences, lessons learned, and words of encouragement are shared freely. A short devotional includes a couple of Bible verses, questions to ponder, and a simple suggestion for change. Each chapter ends with a online video link.

Extras include a Q & A with Sally Clarkson, which addresses specific questions Sally has been asked through the years and a Special Note for Single Moms, which is written by Pam Graves, a single mom of five.

Extra Information

Sarah Mae and Sally Clarkson have a website called Desperate Mom. It is specifically devoted to encouraging moms. From the site, you can read a sample chapter, purchase the book, and learn more about an upcoming book study based on Desperate.

My Thoughts

For me, reading Desperate was both a memory prompter and a source of encouragement. Though my experiences as a young mom were different from Sarah Mae's, I could relate to some of the sentiments and emotions she shared throughout the book. Her honest words captured concerns common to many young mothers. By reading them, I remembered just how hard it was being a young mom with three children under age three. Then, reading Sally's gentle words, I was greatly encouraged. Not only did I find wise words of a mom further on the journey, but I found encouragement in acknowledging some of the things I have learned during my young mom years. With a dozen, or more, years left of intense motherhood ahead of me, Desperate was a sweet oasis of refreshment on my own motherhood journey.

The included Scripture references and questions are applicable to each of the issues discussed. I particularly liked the brevity of each chapter's devotional. However, it's length is not a reflection on its depth. The Scriptures and questions are ideal for pondering. All the suggestions for journaling or action were also applicable and easy to implement. Overall, these aspects make the Biblical lesson completely doable and effective for even the busiest of moms.

Bottom Line

I'd recommend this book for soon to be moms, new moms, and moms like me, who are only partway down the path of motherhood.

~ Dorie

Fine Print: I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for this review. A positive review was not required. All opinions expressed are my own.

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