Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Idols of a Mother's Heart - A Book Review

Idols of a Mother’s Heart
"It had been one of those 'terrible, horrible, no good, very bad days.' The kind where nothing went the way it should. I must have corrected the kids every five minutes. I refereed fights, cleaned up mess after mess, repeated instructions, and tried to create order out of chaos. I was exhausted, irritated, and impatient.
Sitting at the dinner table that evening, it was my oldest son's turn to give thanks. When I heard him say, 'And God, could you please help mommy to be patient with us?' I realized I wasn't the only one affected by our difficult day. I was part of the problem" (24). 
"Before I had children, I considered myself a patient person." Who can't relate to that? Motherhood is hard. Seeing our sinfulness exposed is harder. Applying the good news about Christ's life, death, and resurrection to our lives is glorious! Christina is a wise and relate-able companion for the journey.

In Idols of a Mother's Heart, Christina Fox begins by laying a strong, Gospel foundation which remains central throughout the book. She writes about how we were created to glorify, enjoy, worship, and image God and about how things went terribly wrong. She follows Tim Keller in defining an idol as:
"...anything more important to you than God, anything that absorbs your heart and imagination more than God, anything you seek to give you what only God can give. A counterfeit god is anything so central and essential to your life that, should you lose it, your life would hardly feel worth living. An idol has such a controlling position in your heart that you can spend most of your passion and energy, your emotional and financial resources, on it without a second thought" (Tim Keller as quoted by Christina Fox, pg. 56).
Christina then moves to help her readers identify and dethrone idols. To this end, she offers heart-probing diagnostic questions and reminds us that idols fail again and again and again to deliver on the promise of ultimate happiness, pointing us to Christ who is all-satisfying.
"As much as we seek happiness in the idols we pursue, they can never give us the joy we find with Christ...the infinite abyss can only be filled by an infinite and immutable object, that is to say, only by God Himself" (78).
While I am aware of several other books on this subject, many of them cater to a male audience and/or perspective and focus on idols like sex, money, and power. Christina has thoughtfully applied the same truths found in those excellent books to the area of motherhood, specifically addressing the common idols of: children, achievement and success, comfort, control, and approval. Idols of a Mother's Heart is a welcome addition to other works on this subject!

Idols of a Mother's Heart a Scripture saturated book that is full of sound doctrine. Each chapter closes with rich prayers, insightful questions, and Scriptures for further study and reflection. I love that Christina is humble, real, and transparent with her readers. Idols of a Mother's Heart is a useful book to encourage us daily so that we might not be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. It is my joy to commend it to you!

**Many thanks to Christian Fox for sending me a complimentary copy of this book!! These are my honest thoughts!

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