**Congratulations to Elissa J, who won the giveaway!**
Do you struggle with keeping your mind and thoughts peaceful when the struggles of life dog your footsteps and try to keep you down and distracted? If so, I have a wonderful book to recommend to you. The BlogAbout Blogger Network sent me a digital copy of Ashley Willis’ Peace Pirates to read, and it’s a remarkable book. Keep reading for my thoughts, and for an opportunity to win a signed (on the cover!) hardback copy of your own!
What is it that makes mom life so hard at different moments? I know I’ve often thought, “If I didn’t have THIS challenge (or THAT challenge), things would be so much better.” Or peaceful. Or wonderful. Or, “I’d be a much better mom if I didn’t have THIS particular thing going on.”
So often, we believe that all our problems would be solved and we’d be consistently AMAZING mothers if we didn’t have certain particular external struggles. But what if I told you that peace is attainable in our minds, our hearts, and our homes?
And that it really is something we can achieve? Ashley Willis’ wonderful and encouraging new book, Peace Pirates: Conquering the Beliefs and Behaviors that Steal Your Treasure in Motherhood is ready and willing to teach us how.
About Peace Pirates
Peace Pirates is divided into three sections. In the first, “Confessions of a Pirate Mom,” Ashley shares about her own life and experiences (as a wife and mom of 4) that caused her to learn that she (and moms in general) were in enormous need of peace. During a number of challenging years, Ashley pursued personal healing and learned that living and walking in peace of mind really was possible.
In the second section, “The Four Peace Pirates,” Ashley outlines four habits or ways of thinking/acting that try to pirate away our peace:
- Mommy Martyrdom (I can do it all! Don’t try to help me! Really, I can get this!)
- Comparison Chaos (Oh. Look at her hair! And her kids are so well-behaved! I wish that I had that…)
- Clenching Control (You know what this is. It’s that whole control freak thing.)
- Excessive Expectations (Those unsaid, unspoken demands that our family members should be doing this thing. Or that thing. Then being cranky and unkind when those demands aren’t met. Oh, and we can do this to ourselves just as much as we can to others.)
But Ashley doesn’t just leave us with these probably very recognizable habits. (I could definitely see clearly, upon reading these chapters, which ones I struggle with the most.) But she helpfully provides a quiz in the book as well, if you would like some help in identifying which of these areas you might have. For each one, she gives hope for change as well as the ways to change these, with God’s help, grace, and His Word.
The third section takes a loving look at the life of Mary, the mother of Jesus. Although she, an imperfect human as we all are, was entrusted with such an enormous task of mothering, she approached it with faithfulness to God and belief in Him, and took the opportunity to “treasure up (all those) things in her heart.”
My thoughts and reactions to this book
I loved it!
I love Ashley’s voice. She speaks to the reader genuinely, kindly, and with a great sense of humor. The reader never feels looked down upon or judged. Rather, you know that Ashley is reaching out with a hand to help you climb out of habits that are keeping you from being the mom you wish you could be. And, she gives specific, realizable instructions and ways you can do so.
I saw myself so clearly in the section called “Excessive Expectations.” I have always expected A LOT of myself. And due to some health challenges I’ve had here and there over the past eight years, I became a person who suddenly couldn’t do as much as I thought I could. Let me tell you, I judged myself harshly for that. And there wasn’t anyone who could wave a magic wand and make me that girl that I was in the past who could go, go, go. And just as Ashley says, that way of thinking “distract(ed) me from God’s will, defeat(ed) my spirit, and deplet(ed) my energy.”
Yet here’s the truth. God doesn’t expect me to be that person. He probably never did in the first place! Instead, He is loving me and holding out a hand to help me to gain that peace of mind and proper perspective that will change me, and my home and family. I loved the writing exercise Ashley included, where the reader writes down her expectations, the heart desire of each, and how it would promote peace in the home. (Plus a few more.) When we can see something in black and white, it can really open our eyes and enable us to move forward!
I was also beautifully encouraged and blessed by Ashley’s recounting of Mary’s example.
Do you recognize yourself in any of these types of Peace Pirates? Or, are you feeling discouraged with your mom life, and unable to make any changes? If you are, this is the book for you. It’s lovingly and kindly written, and filled with grace and help. I so recommend it!
How to enter to win a copy!
The BlogAbout Blogger Network has provided a signed (on the book cover!) hardback copy of Peace Pirates for me to give away to one FINCHNWREN reader. To enter, simply click on the “Enter here!” link below. That will take you to a Giveaway Tools entry form where you’ll be able to enter in a variety of ways. Giveaway closes 6/26/20. Best wishes!
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