If you are anything like me, you understand the struggle of finding time to read as a busy mama. Between watching the tiny humans, keeping the house from falling apart, and making sure dinner makes it on the table each night, reading for pleasure can tend to fall pretty low on the priority list.
But finding that perfect book can sometimes be the difference between living in survival mode and really thriving in our roles as Christian mothers, am I right?
Since carving out time for reading doesn’t always happen with such a busy schedule, I make it a point that the books I do read refresh my soul and bring me energy for motherhood. Here are 4 books that will help you organize your priorities, take you back to a simpler way of living and most importantly, bring you peace.
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Present over Perfect by Shauna Niequist
I loved this book from beginning to end. This book is written in short chapters with easy to read anecdotes about how one mom transformed her life as a stressed-out traveling writer to a slower-paced, more intentional way of living with her children.
The author warns about the burnout that can happen when we over-schedule ourselves, and the dangers of living in a constant state of running around. When we are constantly saying “yes” to anything and everything that comes our way, we really are saying “no” to peace in our lives. She speaks to the fear of disappointing others, and she encourages mothers to make time for what really matters.
If you’re a mom who has ever been guilty of “fake-resting” (i.e spending the day in pajamas but really conquering a never-ending to-do list of household chores), then this book is for you!
Unbound by Jamie Sumner
Reading this book feels like talking to your best friend. The author, Jamie Sumner, speaks in such a natural, relatable, and inspiring tone about her life and how she fought her way through fear and loneliness. Through her story of infertility and raising a special needs child, you can find your own hope and encouragement for motherhood.
Jamie pairs her life story with women in the bible and the result is a comprehensive look at the most inspiring female biblical characters in history. Hannah, Miriam, Elizabeth, Sarah, Hagar, Noah’s Wife, Mary Magdalene, Martha, the Woman at the Well, Ruth, Mary… this book takes you through each of their unique stories. This book is really about finding joy in the most unlikely of circumstances, through grace and trust in our Lord Jesus.
A Mother’s Rule of Life by Holly Pierlot
This book is written by a Catholic homeschooling mother of five who needed to find a schedule, a rhythm in her life that brought her peace and simplicity. She felt frustrated (as most moms do) over the never-ending cycle of chores and the lack of time available to get everything done. She speaks about feeling “spiritually stumped,” and how the stress of it all led to less quality time with her husbands and children. Holly developed what she calls “A Mother’s Rule of Life,” which is a pattern of living that balances the priorities of motherhood in a methodical and practical way.
The book outlines the five “P’s” of married life – Prayer, Person, Partner, Parent, and Provider. Through this framework, mothers can develop a realistic daily, weekly, and monthly schedule that allows time for all of these aspects of our vocation. Holly speaks about the “why” behind our daily activities, and encourages mothers to re-prioritize the ways we spend our time that aren’t life-giving.
What was most helpful to me were the charts and schedules that this book provides for reference as I built my own “rule of life” that works for my family. If you need a practical resource for organizing your home rhythm, this is the book for you.
Gracelaced by Ruth Chou Simons
This book is a daily devotional for mothers filled with gorgeous scripture paintings by the author herself. This devotional takes you through the seasons of the year – Winter, Spring, Summer, and Fall, and the wisdom that the bible offers for women through each season of life.
What I loved most about this book are the short, easy-to-read (2 page) chapters that are perfect for mothers that don’t have a lot of time to read. Each day has a space for journaling and writing down your thoughts and reactions to scripture. This book is an excellent way to slow down and spend time in prayer and reflection daily.