Finding God's Good Gifts Motherhood Laura Booz homeschool conversations podcast

Finding God’s Good Gifts in Motherhood (with Laura Booz)

Laura Booz joins me on today’s bonus podcast episode! We chat homeschooling, mom life, and the joy that comes through seeing God at work in the life of our family. Laura shares how God grows our love for Him, for our children, and for the world in the midst of the ordinary and often-challenging seasons of motherhood. It is a conversation focused on love, relationship, wonder, and worship. If you are looking for some Godly encouragement in your motherhood journey, you won’t want to miss this conversation!

Be sure to check out all the other interviews in our Homeschool Conversations series!

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Finding God's Good Gifts Motherhood Laura Booz homeschool conversations podcast

Who is Laura Booz?

Laura Booz is a writer, teacher, and podcaster who encourages women to love God, think biblically, and live vibrantly. She’ll cheer you on, share practical ideas, and point out the beautiful ways God is working in your life. She’s delighted to host the Expect Something Beautiful podcast with Revive Our Hearts and she’s looking forward to the release of her first book, Expect Something Beautiful: Finding God’s Good Gifts in Motherhood, October 2021. She and her husband, Ryan, and their six children make their home in Pennsylvania. Meet her at LauraBooz.com.

Finding God's Good Gifts Motherhood Laura Booz homeschool conversations podcast

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Amy: Hello everyone. Today, I am delighted to be joined by Laura Booz. Laura is a writer, teacher, and podcaster who encourages women to love God, think biblically, and live vibrantly. She’ll cheer you on, share practical ideas, and point out the beautiful ways that God is working in your life. She is delighted to host the Expect Something Beautiful podcast with Revive Our Hearts. She’s looking forward to the release of her first book, Expect Something Beautiful: Finding God’s Good Gifts in Motherhood, October 2021. She and her husband Ryan and their six children make their home in Pennsylvania. Laura, thank you so much for joining us today.

Laura: Thanks, Amy. Hi, everybody.

Laura’s Journey to Homeschooling

Amy: Laura, at the beginning. I would love to just hear a little bit about you and your family and how you came to begin homeschooling.

Laura: Yes, sure. I feel like lots of times when I hear people answer this question, they talk about going into homeschooling, kicking and screaming, [laughs] but maybe my kids did that. I actually felt called to homeschool when I was a child. Just like someone might feel called by the Lord to be a missionary to China someday or something like that. I really felt Him put homeschooling on my heart. I wanted to homeschool my kids someday. I was not homeschooled. In fact, I did not know anyone who was homeschooled until I was maybe in seventh grade. One girl who had been attending school with me, started homeschooling and it just seemed really interesting. Yes, really, it just was this desire, I felt like I wanted to do it someday. I wanted to be in the daily life with my children. I had this vision of just being out in a meadow with my children all gathered around, and we were learning together. Not a vision vision, but this idea, in my mind that seems so lovely and good.

Then as I went through high school, and then through college and grad school, I wouldn’t say I was making my choices based on I’m going to homeschool someday, but rather practical choices of this is what I want to study. Or a career path I could walk down.

Now, on this side of the equation, now that I have been homeschooling and my oldest is turning 16, I can see how the Lord used each of those choices, without my intentionality, to prepare me for the children that I have. Really has been a remarkable walk of faith, even when it really wasn’t on my mind at all, that the Lord was still making the path before me and planting the seeds that needed to be planted and preparing me. Yes, it’s just been really an amazing journey so far.

Amy: I remember hearing someone say one time that God created Paul, so that Paul could write the epistles that he wrote. That all of his history and life story and education, all those things and personality, even, were gifts from the Lord, knowing what He had called him to do eventually. I think so often, like you were saying, our own unique children, our own unique situations, birth orders, personalities, our calling as homeschool moms. All of those very unique ways in our own personal families that we can look back and see how God was working and preparing us to be the mom our children needed. Not the mom another kid needed, but the mom our children needed. To see God at work in our families is really pretty amazing.

Laura: Yes, I totally agree. Even our weaknesses, there are things even out of the wounds from my past or my weaknesses or the things I didn’t learn or whatever, I really can see how the Lord is using them and weaving them in to our day-to-day life. Yes, it’s astounding and He’s so good.

Amy: Then His grace is made perfect in weakness so often.

Laura: Right.

Growing Through Homeschooling

Amy: Well, over the years, as you have grown and your children have grown, what are some ways in which your approach to homeschooling or just educational ideas in general have grown or changed?

Laura: Well, funny you should ask. The first thing that comes to my mind because I have always wanted to homeschool, I feel like there were several times when I had a false start. That’s like jumping the gun like, “Ooh.” In fact, my first baby was born prematurely and I was at her bassinet in the NICU reading to her, singing her songs. I just had this in my mind of nurturing and sharing everything I could with my children. When she was about two, because I was talking to her all the time and reading all the time and singing all the time, she was starting to show a lot of interest in language. She was asking about how to start certain words and the sounds of letters and things like that. I was like, “Oh, this is it. This is the time to start teaching her how to read.” She was two. When that’s your first child, you were so ready to go.

Amy: You’re so gung-ho.

Laura: Can you believe this is it? I got her a little reading curriculum. Everyday, we would just sit at the kitchen table, and we would start this reading curriculum. I noticed after several weeks, that she wasn’t asking about words anymore. Didn’t care what “tree” started with, didn’t care about the letter Q. No, didn’t ask anything. It was a drastic change. I remember putting her in her car seat one day, and I asked, I don’t know why it dawned on me to ask her, but I was like, “Have I’ve stolen the joy of words from you?” She said, “Wait to teach me to read till I’m three.”

When your two-year-old says that, it’s like this opening. Anyway, that just is a good story to indicate my trajectory in homeschooling. Being over anxious, and simply learning to take it a notch down, take it a notch down. I’m a type-A person, anyway. By now, I’m probably a type-B+.

[laughter]

I was like, “Help me to calm down.” Honestly, with 6 children, my oldest is now 16 and then my youngest is 2, I feel like they’ve gotten more and more happy go lucky, as I’ve just not happy, just more buoyancy because I’ve just lightened the load a little bit, waited to teach them to read, do it more slowly, more gently. Also, honestly, just for practical reasons, I’ve had to. I haven’t been able to be as intentionally sitting down, teaching them other things when they’re two and three and four. I’ve had to wait till the younger ones are five and six and seven. It hasn’t had a negative effect. That’s one thing that I noticed has changed in me.

A friend of ours, this might seem a little unrelated, but it’s very related to homeschool moms, I think. During the race riots of 2020, we were just having a conversation with a very dear friend of ours, who is a Black man. He’s in the army, and he loves the Lord. We were asking him, what does all of this mean to you? How are you? How are you processing all of this? What does this mean from your experience in the world? Do you know what he said? He said, “No, hurry, no worry.” Everybody else, you’re feeling the tension of that moment and he said, “No hurry, no worry.”

That was all based in his trust in the Lord and I just took that. I was like, “I want that for my own heart and my walk of faith in my homeschooling.” No hurry, no worry, because so many times my homeschooling has been wrapped up either in eagerness or fear or accomplishment, all the stuff, all of our motives. To remember that with the Lord, there is no hurry, there’s no worry.

I found an actual verse that seemed to dovetail for me anyway and I think it’d be helpful for you. It’s Psalm 4:5 and it says, “Offer right sacrifices, then put your trust in the Lord.” To me, that means bring your whole heart to the table, come before the Lord and say, “Lord, I really want to please you. I really want to serve you today. I want to love my husband, I want to love my children and nurture them, teach them well and faithfully, steward the gifts you’ve given me.” Then put your trust in the Lord. That allows us to, I think, I like the phrase of homeschooling from a place of rest, that’s Sarah Mackenzie, who I love from the Read Aloud Revival. Anyway, yes, those things come to mind.

Amy: I love that. Yes, I love that reminder because so often we face things or even if it’s something as simple as a child who can’t figure out fractions, whatever it is, or a big picture, it’s so easy to globalize those situations and all of a sudden, it’s an emergency and we have to fix everything right now. It’s all on our own shoulders. If we don’t do this, everything’s going to be ruined and our children’s lives will be ruined forever. I might possibly be a little melodramatic sometimes.

Laura: I go there.

Amy: I think most of us do and that reminder that even if there is something that needs to be done or steps we need to take, that we don’t have to rush in and try to fix everything all at once, is such a helpful reminder to rest in the work of Christ. Something I talk about a lot is where our identity is. If we’re putting it in making sure we’ve done all the right things as a mom, and we’ve checked off all the boxes, and we’ve basically pushed all the right buttons expecting to get out this product, we’re going to really be exhausted and disappointed because we’re not going to be able to save ourselves or our children. To flip that over and be able to rest in the work that Christ has done on our behalf, brings so much rest and peace to our homeschool and just our life as moms, in general.

Laura: Yes, and then I think it opens this door to worship because we get to see what He does with our meager offering and marvel at it. We get to see how he works things out over time and our children grow in character slowly, but steady. How He forgives and heals and comforts them, it’s so marvelous.

Finding God's Good Gifts Motherhood Laura Booz homeschool conversations podcast

How has your relationship with God grown as you’ve been a mom?

Amy: Yes. Well, one of my friends, Lynna Sutherland, often says that homeschooling is parenting-intensified. It is all the things that we deal with as moms only more so because it’s in all the areas of life. So many more opportunities for growing and grace and being sanctified and getting to repent a lot. I would love to hear how you have seen God really pursue you through this journey of motherhood and how has your relationship with Him grown as you’ve been a mom?

Laura: Lynna is so right. [laughs] That’s a good way of putting it because, yes, we’re not any different than a mom who doesn’t homeschool, except it’s just our everyday, all-the-time intensity. [laughs] Okay, let’s see. There’s the story that comes to my mind and it gives a feel for how I’ve seen the Lord work in my life, in general, in a million different ways. The story that comes to mind is when I had three little ones, and my older two daughters were doing schoolwork. I can’t remember if they were in second grade in kindergarten or something. Then I had a third, who was four probably. My son was probably four. Starting, I could have done some preschool things with him, but he mostly loved to have storybooks read to him, and then maybe play something based on those storybooks. I was probably pregnant to tell you the truth. [chuckles] I just remember feeling like I was ruining him. All I’m doing is feeding him fruit snacks and letting him watch shows. All right, I’m so sorry. I’m not stewarding this little boy well as comparing what I did with my older two with what I wasn’t doing with him.

I just was feeling like, “Ah, what am I doing?” I really was so upset about it. I remember just laying down on the floor crying, “Lord, I need your help. I do not know what to do with him.” He, in that moment, brought to my mind that I had just seen scrolling through my email, this email from soccer shots. Really, it just came to my mind in that moment of prayer. I went back to my email and looked, sure enough, soccer shots, and they were starting the season. We’d never done soccer shots before. I don’t know how I was on their mailing list but they were starting up a little next season at the church right around the corner, really, right around the bend. They’re starting the next week. I contacted them, we got his registration, and he did this little soccer shots program. I don’t know, maybe once or twice a week. I remember the first time we went, I brought the two little girls. They did their schoolwork on the sidelines, and he’s in there doing a little soccer shot thing. At one point, he must have ran back to defend the goal and the coach said, “You’re a good defender, Malachi.” I started crying. [laughs]

This is so life-giving. That coach just told him he’s a good defender, which, of course, I want for him from Proverbs 31, “Speak up for those who can’t speak up for themselves.” Be a defender. I actually came home and wrote it on the poster board and put it by his bed. It was such a blessing. I don’t know how long a soccer shot season lasts. It was probably six weeks, maybe eight weeks, but that was a blessing from the Lord at a time when I was desperate. I didn’t know how to build into my son’s life.

That has happened in a million ways, throughout my homeschooling experience. Whether it’s just the night before, I’m not quite sure what to do with one of the kids, and I say, “Lord, I need an idea.” A little idea will come to mind and I’ll give it a try. I have sinned against them and I’m like, “Oh, Lord, when will I ever stop being sarcastic or taking that so personally?” He gives me truth from His word, or comforts me, or helps me to ask them for forgiveness. Really, it’s just been that daily coming to Him, whether it’s very emotional, and I’m on my face crying, [laughs] or it’s just a momentary like, “Oh, Lord, we’re going to be 15 minutes late, please give us your grace, and help me to have good ideas here to get us out the door.”

Whatever. Just His presence, and His friendship, and His very real help, in time of need. That’s been so meaningful to me.

Amy: I love hearing all of those stories, all of these examples you’re giving too. All started with prayer, and just how often we can be distracted because we’re so busy with these important things like in the story of Mary and Martha. These are important things, Lord, we have to get these things done. I don’t have time to pray, I don’t have time to read your Word because I’m so busy getting the math lesson done, or the baby’s diaper changed or whatever, but that it is our life. To spend that time in prayer is a means of grace by which the Lord ministers to us. Then to see the Lord answer those prayers is like this testimony. You can look back and know, I can pray today and I know the Lord answer that prayer because I’ve seen him do that over and over again, in the years past.

Laura: Yes, that’s it.

How can we find rest and grace to persevere in the midst of motherhood challenges?

Amy: Being a mom is such a good precious gift. We’re so delighted to be moms. Sometimes on the hard days, we still struggle [laughs] to feel that way about it and to remember that it is true that this is a gift. Maybe it’s expectations that haven’t been met, the way we anticipated they would be, or just very tired. We’re serving and pouring out all day to our families and our church communities. How can we find true rest in Christ and encouragement, especially in the midst of those hard times to persevere by His grace?

Laura: There are so many different ways, but I’ll speak to what has helped me. One is a couple close friends who are surrendering to the same book, the Bible. Who even if we wrestle and talk it out and even complain, we know by the end of the conversation, our friend is going to say, “Here’s what this book says, this dear book that both of us love and live under. Here’s the good heart of our Heavenly Father.” Just a good listening ear and helpful, dear friends, and really just be one, two, that you walk alongside, and they walk alongside you. It’s just has been so dearly precious to me over all my years of motherhood. I thought friends were important in middle school, high school, college. Think about your friendships during those periods of time, but I think that there is nothing like the friends in motherhood. If you don’t have one, then I would make that the first priority of prayer and ask the Lord to, first of all, make you a dear friend to somebody, and then also to provide a dear friend for you because it is long, and it is hard.

We need each other to care for one another in ways that even our husbands can’t because they are living a different experience in the world. It just is so dear to have another woman who really can say, “Me too.” Or cheer you on or cry with you. For me, God’s grace of friendship has been so, so valuable.

I think also the grace of honesty and sharing those things with the Lord when motherhood is hard and you feel really discouraged and the things you don’t like about it. I think that it’s more helpful to be honest with Him than to try to cover it up or lah lah lah or try to tell yourself, “Don’t think that, don’t think that.” We never get anywhere with that type of denial. Instead surrender your complaints to Him. Some complaints and things, or He’ll shed light on it and perspective to see. That’s what every four year old does. Every 13 year old it’s the season of life and you’ll gain perspective so that you can offer grace to your child and have endurance to walk alongside them. Other things we’ll fix other things that we bring our complaints before Him and say like, “Lord, I legitimately don’t like the way this is going. I need a solution here. I need your grace. Can you help me solve this problem or change this person’s heart?”

Those things might not be immediate might not even be it might be a long time coming I really think it’s perfectly good to bear our souls before the Lord and be honest with Him and then expect Him to address those things as a good father does.

Amy: When we are honest with the Lord first, it also enables us to be authentic with our friends. I think it’s so valuable to be willing to say, when things are hard or we’ve messed up, or we don’t know what to do not necessarily like broadcasting it to the world, but to those friends that you know are going to listen and point, you point you back to the gospel. Of course, because I know in my own life, there were things, especially with my first born certain challenges that I heard, no one talking about. I was like it must be like me or my kids. What’s wrong? To feel that feeling of aloneness, like what you’re dealing with is so crazy. Instead to realize, now I’ve begun talking to some other moms who have that same, like me too, this is common to man. We are not alone in that and there’s something really encouraging just to realize, okay, other moms have faced the same thing. God has been faithful. He will continue to be faithful in those ways.

Laura: A friend of mine just recently shared with me that the opposite of shame is connection, which to me was not intuitive because I was telling her about something, some just this low grade feeling of shame I was feeling. She shared that and then I thought, oh, I would have thought the opposite of shame would have been, I don’t know peace or pride or coming into the light? I don’t know. To think about how connecting with the Lord will address some of that shame that we feel about, what am I doing wrong? What’s wrong with my child? Why aren’t they doing this? Comparing all this stuff. Similarly with friends when we can connect with a friend about it, then it really does wallet, that enemy of shame. [laughs]

How can we have Godly expectations?

Amy: That was really powerful. I’m going to be thinking about that I just like got some goosebumps. It’s like, “Wait, I need to stop this conversation and think about that for a bit.” [laughs] I’ll have to wait and do that after we’re done. I want to ask too, as we’re discussing these things, and I have a feeling some of these same principles of going to the Lord resting in his word, it’s it seems so simple. Yet it’s not, it is that root and that foundation for all of these topics. I want to ask specifically about our expectations for the future. We wake up in the morning and we’re like, today, I’m not going to yell at my kids. Today nobody’s going to cry over their homework and it’s going to be a good day. Then after breakfast that’s already fallen apart or like the semester we’ve got our plans, we’ve got our textbooks picked out the perfect curriculum and our expectations maybe aren’t met.

Then like, long-term, the humans. Our children are going to grow up to be what the Lord will have for us even after they leave home. Expectations and goals are good to set, but sometimes we don’t do it in a very wise or godly way. How can a long question, how can we set up these godly expectations for the future?

Laura: It’s actually a very good question because I think our expectations really matter because they really determine like what we’re looking for and how we process the things that come to be. I think expectations is another word for hope. When scripture says, ”Be prepared to give an answer for the hope that you have.”

It matters what you’re putting your hope in, it matters what you are looking forward to.

It’s also helpful that I just wrote a book called Expect Something Beautiful. I have been ruminating expectations. I don’t know that I’d be able to put into words how I feel without having you work on this book for a year. I think when it comes to homeschooling and motherhood is that it’s helpful to look forward at the day with the eyes of like, “I’ve been called to this relationship. A relationship with this person and the reason that our relationship is going to grow and being it together is because of this person’s needs.” Needs what a person needs, something that weaves us together in a way nothing else can. It’s beautiful, it’s hard. We have to be honest about it. They are rarely ever I know my child tomorrow will need breakfast, lunch and dinner we’ll need clothes, whatever.

But then there are so many different surprises and it’s helpful for me to go into a day expecting this is going to be a relationship and the messiness of a relationship and the beauty of a relationship and the surprise of a relationship. That yes, I can make plans, but also knowing what comes first is the needs and the way that the Lord’s going to leave us together today. Maybe even write it out, like if whatever season of life you’re in, you can say like, “Well today someone’s going to call my name out of the blue and I’ve got to go running to their side.” I know it’s going to happen. I just don’t know when or what I’ll be doing. Probably I’ll be like talking on the phone or dealing with an important problem somewhere else. That’s what I’m going to be needed. Someone’s going to have a meltdown about something that’s just too hard for them. It’s going to be my privilege and calling to come by their side and help them through it. Anyway, not to be idealistic about it, but also to cast His vision for yourself, so that you do go to bed, not feeling like all day long, you were pulled in a million directions and you really didn’t accomplish anything. It’s to go to bed, put your head on the pillow and remember “today I anticipated that our relationships would grow and they did. I anticipated that all of these unexpected things would come up because that’s relationships and it did, and the Lord was good and I can go to bed feeling content with that.” I don’t know if that–

Amy: That’s really helpful. No, that’s helpful. I was just thinking on the days that I’m most at peace with my children are the days when somebody at an awkward moment is having trouble, of course, and needs me to come, help them work through something. On those days where by God’s grace I can just be like, “Hey, this is what I’m here for.” That is why I’m here is to help you when you have a problem, then generally actually they understand things better. Our relationship goes more smoothly and I’m not stewing in my own mind about how it’s interrupting the plans I had for the day. I can see that actually this was what God had for me today. On those days instead where I’m just grumbling in my head about, “Oh, I can’t believe I have to stop what I’m doing to go help you with your math or whatever.” Then that just breaks fellowship. It makes me miserable, makes the kids miserable. It’s not really seeing that this was in fact part of that good gift of God and the relationships with my kids.

Laura: I think it’s– everybody says this to be very discerning about the images you see on social media. I think especially honestly, to be very discerning about the images we see in the homeschooling world, particularly like in ads we have a running joke here at our family when we get a homeschooling catalog. It’s just hilarious [laughs] because the images that you see, you’re like, “There’s no possible way. No, this family is not all sitting around with a dad playing his guitar and the son looking at a plant in the sunlight and somebody reading.” Maybe I’m so happy for them if it’s a reality, but I have to like have a really good filter for “that’s a pretty picture.” What it’s communicating to me are these ideas of yes, family is beautiful. When everybody’s engaged, it’s beautiful when people are creating and making music and sunlight and nature. All those things are beautiful and good but not to make it an idol instead to keep worshiping the Creator and to see how that really works out in real time. I don’t know. It’s been helpful to me.

Amy: Yes, definitely. You bringing up setting up an idol. It makes me think, I think it’s at least it’s Elyse Fitzpatrick who talks about when we have a good desire or something, it’s not that the desire itself is bad, it’s good to desire that our children would be obedient, for example. That’s a good desire to have, but when we don’t get what we desire, it really shows whether even a good desire had become an idol. Because when you don’t get what you desire, your child disobeys. Are you going to respond in anger as if you’ve been personally affronted? Or are you going to respond in a loving, humble way? Or anything? Whether having a clean kitchen, that is a good desire. It’s not a desire I get very often, to be frank, but [laughs] it’s when I don’t get it, am I, “Oh, I can’t believe. Why is this kitchen always so messy? No one ever puts their cups in the dishwasher.” That reaction in our heart really shows if it’s become an idol, something we value more than we value the Lord.

Laura: Speaking, when things don’t go exactly as they should, if your listeners hear a rumbling sound in the background, [laughs] it’s because we’re getting our propane delivered. We’ve been without heat for a couple of days.

Amy: Oh no.

Laura: I’m super glad that the big truck is here with propane, but also I’m sorry if you can hear that noise in the background. [laughs]

Amy: That’s okay. A few minutes ago, one of our smoke alarms beeped, which means apparently the battery’s going down. I’m just like, “Please don’t beep too much.”

[laughter]

Finding God's Good Gifts Motherhood Laura Booz homeschool conversations podcast

Laura’s advice for the new homeschooling mom

Laura, if you are talking to a new homeschool mom, or someone who is considering homeschooling, what would you want to say to that new mom?

Laura: That I’m so happy for you, because it really is an awesome experience. Sometimes I say, okay, my objective in homeschooling, because I’ve grown so much as a person, I’ve learned so much. I went through grad school, and I have learned more homeschooling my children than I learned my entire education. I’m sure of it 100%. I’m happy for you personally and all you will learn about yourself, about God, about your child. Then also like about the world God made, about literature and science and history. It’s just going to be so fun if you allow yourself to embrace and enjoy it. Here’s what I usually say, well, I am homeschooling so that my children have a positive enough experience so that one day they’ll homeschool their kids and actually get an education. [laughs] Because, I know I just am learning so much, but I think let’s see, I wrote some notes down.

Remember it’s all about love and what I was saying before about relationship. That it’s not a job and it’s not even primarily a calling, but it’s primarily a relationship with a person God chose to put in your life. This is the path He’s put before you to grow that relationship.

Homeschooling is part of that and to see it as that. Instead of keeping your eye on the checklists, which of course, we have to be mindful of that and fulfill the requirements, and we want to be faithful stewards, but to faithfully steward the relationship is so essential. It’s also key. T

hen just one other little thing. This is a tidbit that I picked up from Cindy Rollins. She was a pioneer homeschool mom. If you ever hear an interview with her or pick up one of her books, or read an article that she’s written, she’s really been in the homeschool community for a very long time and has a lot of perspective and wisdom. I love what she writes. She actually has a book called Mere Motherhood, Cindy Rollins.

One of the main points that resonated with me anyway, I don’t think she says just do it. I know, that’s the Nike slogan, but something to that effect, just do it. When you’re feeling like, “Oh, I need to make plans that I need more picture books with my children.”

You sit down the computer and you start making up this plan. Well, her point would be like, “Describe a picture book and read it to your child. [laughs] Write that in there.” Or like, “Oh, yes, I just heard that other mom talk about taking her kids out for ice cream for lunch on a bad day. I need to make a plan to do that.” Just do it. It doesn’t have to be a bad day. Say, “Everybody in the car, we’re going to go get ice cream.”

That has helped me a lot because I feel like it’s so easy to feel like you’ve got to get all the systems in place, and you’ve got to get the calendar all ironed out. You’ve got to get the plan, but just be cool. Do your puzzle. It’s important to first do the puzzle. Those were just a couple of things that I would pass on to a new homeschool moms that have those tools ready to go because I think that would be really helpful.

Amy: I love that and I love Cindy as well. In fact, season two of the podcast, she came on Homeschool Conversations and we got to chat together. It was really delightful. I’ll include that link in the show notes too. If anyone wants to go listen to Cindy as well. Well, at the end here, I’m asking all of my guests this season the same two questions. I’m just going to start by asking, what are you reading lately?

What Laura is reading lately

Laura: I knew you were going to ask me this and I was like, “Oh, I should offer a really relevant homeschooling book.” [laughs]

Amy: No.

Laura: I would go with honest.

Amy: Good.

Laura: I’m actually reading a book called Suffering by Paul David Tripp. It came up in my life because of friendship. It was a new friend, who was just mentioning like, “Oh, I was just reading this morning in this book Suffering by Paul David Tripp that fill in the blank.” I can’t remember exactly what she said, but it made me realize, wait, why is my friend reading a book on suffering? Because whenever someone’s reading a book on suffering, there’s a reason. Either they’re writing a report on it, or they’re suffering. I just ordered it, and I just started it. I told her, it will probably come out over time why you’re reading it, but I just wanted to let you know that I ordered it and I’m reading it too. I started that, and it’s really beautiful. One of the most impactful things so far is he pointed out that suffering is spiritual warfare. I never would have thought of it that way. I can now see that it would be for sure. Anyway, there you have it. That’s the book I’m actually reading.

Amy: That is a wonderful book. I love Paul David Tripp, he has so many excellent titles. I love the way he can take things and say them in this very pointed way that makes you think of things and a new– think of things you already maybe took for granted, but think about them in a new way.

Laura: It’s from his own experience through suffering. It also sparked my interest too, I think my ear were just tuned in the topic because a friend, my sister’s has recently she’s on the upswing of going through recovering from colon cancer, she had a 50% chance of living. She just felt that the Lord put on her heart to homeschool her little ones, and then boom. That went in a whole different direction than she would have ever dreamed or thought or wanted. She was talking about now on the other side of recovery, that there are certain things that are incompatible. The way she was living, the way she was thinking before being sick. Now that what she’s gone through, she said, and that word, that thing, there are certain aspects of life that are incompatible once you have a greater eternal perspective. I don’t know. It’s just been mulling around in my mind and I want to know, what are those things? Once you’ve suffered and once you’ve seen the hand of God, how does life change? How does your perspective change because of that?

Laura’s Tip for Helping the Homeschool Day Run Smoothly

Amy: It sounds like a wonderful book that we should all probably read. My final question for you is what is your best tip for helping the homeschool day run smoothly?

Laura: Very simple and it’s just a smile. I think besides prayer, smiling is the most powerful thing I do any day, from day to day. Smiling at my husband, smiling at my kids when they walk in the door, sitting next to them, anytime I can. Smiling is, I think, a very special gift from God. We bless one another when we say these face shine upon you. May He have His countenance upon you. That just means may God smile at you. He gives us that to give to one another. Especially the dear people in our home. Even if I’m not feeling the smile inside, it’s not being fake. I’m not saying smile fakely. I’m saying there are many times when we’re not aware of what our face or countenance looks like and that really matters in our day. As the life givers in our home, when we smile, everything changes our own attitude, our children. That’s my number one tip, to smile.

Amy: Well, wherever anyone is while you’re listening or watching, I want you to turn and smile at your children. [chuckles]

Laura: I can guarantee that you are so beautiful when you smile. I can guarantee it. [laughs]

Finding God's Good Gifts Motherhood Laura Booz homeschool conversations podcast

Find Laura Booz Online

Amy: What a wonderful encouragement and reminder. All right, this has been a delightful conversation. I’m so glad that you were here with us today. Could you please tell people where they can find you all around the internet and then tell us a little bit about the book that’s coming out very soon? I hope everyone can go and pre-order that. I will have links in the show notes that tell us where they can find you all around the internet.

Laura: Well, I know you can find me at laurabooz.com. L-A-U-R-A B-O-O-Z.com that is my main website. Then you can find me on Facebook and Twitter, I think. I am really not involved in social media. Yes, you can look for me there. [chuckles] Maybe I’ll be there. At this point in my life, the Lord hasn’t called me to be super involved in social media. I’m not there much, but I do post on my blog when there are upcoming things. You can subscribe there so that if I have big news for you or something, I will send you an email. I’m not a fan of the email either. Yes, mostly at laurabooz.com at this point.

Amy: What is the new book? Tell us about the new book. What is it about?

Laura: The title again is Expect Something Beautiful: Finding God’s Good Gifts in Motherhood. It really is about how as a woman walk with God through motherhood, that He gives her good gifts. He gives her the gift of His presence and His help. Over time, to be more and more like Jesus, to love like He does, and to see people the way He does. It’s beautiful gift. It’s just an exploration of some down-to-earth real stories from my own life. How I experienced His good love and care through motherhood and encouragement and some tools to help other moms to turn towards Him and walk with Him through motherhood too. Yes, that’s it.

Amy: I look forward to reading that.

Laura: Thanks.

Amy: Well, I am just excited to be able to share the news about that book and to share you with my audience. I will have links to all the things we have chatted about today and the show notes for this episode at humilityanddoxology.com. Thanks, Laura.

Laura: Thanks, Amy. Bye-bye.

Check out all the other interviews in my Homeschool Conversations series!

Homeschool Conversations Video Interviews Podcast HumilityandDoxology.com Amy Sloan

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