Wednesday, August 01, 2007

The Spirituality of Parenting

Bonnie J. Miller-McLemore, In the Midst of Chaos: Caring for Children as Spiritual Practice (San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass, 2007)

Who will think of parenting as a spiritual practice? Who will think of parenting as being spiritual? For most of us parents, parenting is just basic survival, living day to day. Bonnie Miller-McLemore’s book catchy title, In the Midst of Chaos captures the messy aspect of parenting exactly. It also throws a new perspective on parenting.

Bonnie is no ordinary mum. She is the E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Professor of Pastoral Theology at Vanderblit University Divinity School. I wonder what it will be like to have a theologian as your mother. In this book, she invites us to “…(by) rethinking parenting as an invitation to discover God in the middle of our busy and overstuffed lives…” Taking the ordinary task and routine of parenting, Bonnie shows us how to be “contemplating in chaos.” She invites us to take kids seriously, dealing justly with them, playing the field (Xbox, soccer etc) with them, read from Seuss to Scripture and finally to blessing and letting go.

This is a good read for parents who are struggling with being parents in the midst of chaos.

God, have mercy.

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4 Comments:

Blogger Super Sidera said...

Looks like a great book. I'll have to pick that up! Good parenting has been lost through the generations and is difficult to learn from today's parents. Now we have to read about it in books instead of learning from good traditions passed down.

12:02 AM  
Blogger Alex Tang said...

hi super sidera,

welcome. It is lamentable that we have lost the extended family and inter generational churches so we are down to learning our parenting from books and seminars.

12:13 AM  
Blogger pearlie said...

I never thought of parenting as "spiritual" but I think she is right. Parenting for me is not basic survival, thankfully. I enjoy being a mom :) it may be stressful at times, patience run thin and at times I can blow off my top, but all in all, being a mom to my son is a joy for me.

And I like what you quoted: take kids seriously, dealing justly with them, playing the field (Xbox, soccer etc) with them, read from Seuss to Scripture and finally to blessing and letting go.

I will look out for the book though I am not sure I will see it here. Where did you get it?

1:24 PM  
Blogger Alex Tang said...

hi pearlie,

I too never think of parenting as a spiritual discipline or practice but after reading Bonnie's book, it does make sense. I wonder why I did not see it as such before.

I got my copy from amazon.com

2:05 PM  

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