For the clip, connect here Last Friday, I was laying on our bed in my gown in the hotel room, as I had a little respiratory virus and was trying to feel better before going to set up our books with Clay at the church we would be speaking at the next day. He was on the couch of our hotel room.
"I think someone just sent us a spam email--I'm sure it must not be for real. It is just a couple of sentences that say, "I found your book and I was wondering if you knew of anyone in the NYC area who could speak on a debate about women being unhappy having to work vs. staying home with the children." And it was signed a name, with Fox and Friends producer behind her name and a phone number. But it doesn't have any kind of address or letterhead or anything to make me think this is real. Why don't you call this number and see who answers."
So I rolled over and called the number. The person on the other end hung up. I called back again and they did not even answer. So I emailed back, just to be faithful. Within a couple of minutes, I got a call. The person on the phone said she was a producer of the Saturday morning show. When she found out that I was in Hartford, she said, "Could you rearrange your speaking engagement for the afternoon and be here tomorrow morning at 8:15 to be on live?"
I told her I would try to arrange it and then she said she would ask her assistant Alan to call me back with details. Our wonderful hosts at the Iron Sharpens Iron conference willingly rearranged our schedule and
so I emailed back my reply and numbers to the station and said yes, and still thought it was some kind of a dream. By 7:30 that evening, 6 hours later, I had not heard anything, so I assumed it was off--or that they had found out I was just a normal mom! And we were just getting ready to put the schedule back the way it was when I got a call from the assistant who said, "I will email you soon with the details. A town car will pick you up tomorrow morning just before 6 a.m. and drive you to the news station in NYC. They will bring you back immediately to your speaking engagement after it is all over as quickly as possible so that you can speak."
So, Clay and I got up at 4:30, got ready and met a hired driver who whisked us away on our two hour drive. When we arrived in NYC, he let us out and showed us the Fox building. We entered to find a security desk where we had to show our id's and go through the screening machines, and then we were met by a young assistant, around 20, who was to show us up to the waiting room.
Mike Huckabee--delightful! talked about publishers.
The waiting room was a very small, plain, undecorated room where several young men sat at computers, with their backs to us, and typed away. We sat down on couches to wait and had no idea what to expect. A few minutes later, I said, "I sure wish there was a cup of coffee or tea for my throat." So I ventured across the hall to look, and found a room with some coffee dispensers and hot water, with a man standing filling his cup. As I filled my cup, he turned around, and it was Mike Huckabee! I greeted him and we began a conversation and he came into the waiting room with Clay and me and chatted for a few minutes about publishers and writing books and such! What a very gracious, easy-going man he was. Such a serendipitous moment.
The "green room" where we were supposed to wait. The editor of the
Next a dad and his ice-hockey playing son entered the room, who were to be on before us. Sweet and proud. Finally, a young looking woman with large glasses and leggings came into the room and sat on the other side of the room and sat down. Eventually, she moved over to be with us and we found out that she and her friend had started the magazine for women 15 years before, that was primarily for 20 year olds to appeal to their felt needs and desires. She was the "feminist" who was supposed to be on the opposing side of my stance.
We had a really nice time talking and she said something like,"I think they really think that there is going to be animosity between us and lots of sparks, but I don't have any big issue with moms who stay at home. We are just trying to get our magazine going and make it work and I still really care about my children and spend as much time with them as I can, and really want to be a good mom."
Then, a young man, (college student interning), said, "Sally, would you come to make-up now before it gets crowded."
Finally, I was sent to get my microphone, and then asked to stand in the hall to wait for our "moment." There, Tanya Tucker finished her song and passed next to me (hall way barely wide enough for us to pass by each other.) "Boy, that was a long set. I am glad it was over," she said as she walked through the hall.
Next Lis Wiehl and I were standing next to each other just before we walked onto the set. She was very sweet, personable, and spent most of the chatting time talking about her children. It was her son's 17th birthday and he was also taking the psat's. So, the three of us did have a small opportunity to chat quietly for about a minute before walking in to do the segment.
The set with 3 other sweet women. Very small, tucked into the corner, with cameras and camera men just in front of us--very, very small area.
There was no prep, no instructions as to which camera to look into, or knowing ahead of time what questions would be asked, as I have done in other interviews. I just sailed in by faith and hoped for the best. I was blessed to know so many were praying. So many of you have been so very encouraging to write and bless me, as it is a very vulnerable position to be in--and of course I was nervous, hoping I would not blow it too badly. But, if God opens a door, walking through it as faithfully as I can is my desire. I learned so much about this in China.
I do have just a few thoughts about the subject of stay at home mom verses working mom. The reality in our culture today is that 70 % of moms work in some way or another. Many have to work. Many are single moms and feel constantly stretched all the time. Because of the commitment that Clay and I made together many years ago to work together in family ministry to reach as many moms, dads and parents with the Biblical design of home, means that I have to work, together with Clay, or we would not pay our bills. The Lord, Clay and my children come first, so for me it has meant working and writing, while tucking my book projects in amidst the small moments of time I could sneak off to write down a thought. It also meant bringing our children along with us in ministry and seeking to give them a sense of their calling to also reach their world--and to give them a taste of helping people.
But every woman's puzzle and story is different. Each of us will have to answer to God someday about how we faithfully lived and directed the stewardship of our children's lives. I would love to see those in media and in journalism validate and understand the important work and beautiful life so many moms are creating by staying at home. I would love to see the Lord champion our cause, so that it can at least be one of the choices women hear about instead of not seeing this choice of staying home with our children as validated at all.
So many have been fooled to think that the providing of things for their children and experiences for them is a higher priority than giving their time and personal attention.
So, if this is the culture that God has born me into--one in which families are falling apart and in which babies and children are being neglected and media is determining their values--and consequently the soul of the young generation has been violated and abused.
Then I have to say, "Jesus, how do you see these precious ones?" Jesus looked out on the multitudes and had compassion on them, because He saw them as sheep without a shepherd, lost without guidance. So I feel that God wants me to have a heart for those less fortunate than me, who don't really understand the consequences their decisions will have on their children. I feel God has asked Clay and me to reach as many mothers with our messages as possible--for the sake of the children and for the sake of pleasing our Lord. So many of you give our books away to moms, leaders, and others and this helps so much for us to get the messages into the hands of those who long for direction. Thanks for helping us!
Our lives need to be winsome, not harsh; life-giving and inviting--not condemning; serving, loving and reaching out--not blockaded and fearful and hateful.
God will call some to voice and articulate our cause, but most of us are called to minister to our neighbor or friend or family member--in gentleness, humility and love.
It is an issue of following God's call and pattern to be life-givers, civilizers in our home, loving and serving God and following His priorities in all areas of our lives. To model His truth and reality. And then, to gently reach out to those who love their children and yet do not know any better. We will not win by separating ourselves in a Pharisaical attitude and stance. It is not my desire to alienate anyone in culture. It is my desire to help redeem and restore.
I do think that so many moms just have never had a Biblical model or instruction in the area of loving and discipling their children at home. The older I get, the more blessed I feel that somehow, God allowed me to know what I know and do what I do. It was His grace and love that showed me the importance of my role, nothing of my own merit. I did have to make a faith choice, but it was His light that led me there.
My desire in my writing is to lift up the ideal of motherhood so that wherever anyone is on that path, they can get on the path toward ideals and move ahead one step at a time. Will there be critics and people who react to our messages and who throw darts at us to discourage us? Yes! That is part of the battle. I often get scathing letters from those who disagree with my philosophy. But again, I look to Jesus, "who though being reviled, did not revile in return, but kept trusting himself to God who judges righteously."
If Jesus did not revile, we must not revile. It is a part of the battle--to be criticized, feel inadequate, tempted to resentment and to feel hurt. But as we keep our eyes on Jesus, and pray, "Help me to have places I may teach truth and show love and have compassion for your kingdom's sake." He is our audience and He is able, easily to be pleased, because all He asks for is our heart of love and faithfulness.
God's grace to each of you today.
So happy to be home today and picking up the pieces. Glad to have been with very wonderful friends and our wonderful Joel in Boston. More about that soon.
You can now register for the mom's conferences online at wholeheart.org More information about our speakers, music. luncheon and mom heart leadership training soon!