Volume. XXXII, No. 13
Sunday, 24 September 2017

Book Review: "The Battle Within - What being a mum taught me about myself" by J Robin Wood

I was given the opportunity to read a book and give a summary / review of what I read. It took me more than 6 months to complete this challenge, but I finally completed the task! I read a book called the “The Battle Within – What being a mum taught me about myself”. I found this book to be so relevant to my current life that I recommend this book to all Christian mums. It really made me look at myself and reflect on how I can still have a relationship with God even when I’m up to my neck in dirty laundry or when the day hasn’t even started and my kids are having a meltdown one straight after the other. At the end of each chapter there are personal reflecting questions that helped me to evaluate myself and see my sin and forced me to deal and think on them.

The writer married a minister, and had 3 children (a boy and twins) before their 3rd Wedding Anniversary. As she faced her greatly anticipated dream of motherhood, it quickly turned to a desperate struggle for survival. She tells of how she came to the realization that we struggle with battles everyday. This battle is not about our eternal destiny as this has already been decided, but this battle is between the Holy Spirit and our sinful hearts.

The writer refers to our sinful hearts as  “supermum”. As Christian mothers we all aspire to be a successful parent, to be a good testimony, to be faithful, to be someone other mums can look up to, to do a good job, to have children that reflect well on us, to do all and be all. We want to be Supermum!! This isn’t so bad, is it?  We are all too busy trying to do good our own way, to handle life on our own. I can cope! I can do this!

But it is utterly futile trying to be a Christian mum without resting and abiding in Christ (John 15:4-5).

She points out that most of our spiritual warfare begins in the mind. For example, Supermum will try to convince us or persuade us that we are omnipotent!! She writes, “God created the role of mum to be the great healer of ouches, and scrapes and little wounded spirits, fixer-upper of broken toys, the one who discerns the motives of a child’s heart.. She even has the power to both determine and carry out punishments. Supermum urges me to make the most of this power and to enjoy all the perks that come with such absolute authority over my children. In other words, if they don’t do what I want them to, I can make them pay for it. If they get in the way of my agenda, they’ll regret it. Supermum loves to see my children cringe in fear before me rather than cheerfully obey.

Supermum wants my children to wrongly think I can see everything they are doing and live in fear of me. But the Sword says I should be teaching my children that “the eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to shew himself strong in the behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward him” 2 Chronicles 16:9”

The writer gives more examples of how we can be deceived in thinking that we are doing well in raising our children and how our self-reliance and / or our ability to assure ourselves that everything is all right and justifiable can be our downfall in our parenting.

The writer also offers many practical ways we can defeat and win the daily battles, especially in specific circumstances. There is one very practical way to defeat sin that stood out to me.

One very practical way is in using the sword! God’s Word (Ep 6:16). God’s Word is alive, personal, protects, comforts, reveals, convicts and conquers.  It doesn’t mean that when in battle we hold the Bible tightly or crouch behind the Bible as our shield. What the writer means that at a moment of weakness when the devil strikes (or super mum) and you cry for help, the Lord will enable you to recall verses in the Bible that will help you fight the war and overcome sin. Hence, it is wise to know your Bible! The Word is more powerful than you will ever know. Use it. Satan can’t stand against it.

The writer also points out that it is possible to abide in Christ, even while cleaning the bathroom or potty training my children or while being taxi driver mum. By abiding in Christ more and more, we realise that we can’t imagine not abiding in Christ. Abiding in Christ keeps us from being dependent on ourselves.  

The fact of the matter is that spiritual battles are expected. Battles are real. Battles are not only common but also very frequent (happens on a daily basis) to all of us mums. Battles are hard and relentless but they can be overcome. Perhaps we face the battles and struggles of pride or maybe its anger? Or do you find that you are trying to control everything in your life rather than submitting to God’s sovereignty? How about contentment or simply the expectations of others, God or even from ourselves? Whatever the battle, God can help us make very specific and detailed steps to victory.

In summary, this book really made me think about what kind of mother I should be but am not. What kind of relationship I should have with God but don’t. What battles and problems that I need to face but haven’t. This book also gave many practical ways to deal with the every day battles we face. I am sure reading this book can help all mums reflect upon their life and purpose as a Christian mother and help mums become closer to God.

More Lively Hope



- Welcome Rev Hyun Choi to Hope Church.
- Please note our Church’s stand against same-sex marriage.
- Hospitality Roster for Rev Hyun Choi & Pr Hai Seng Lim are at the foyer. Please have fellowship with them.
- Registration forms & pamphlets for Holiday Bible Club are available in the foyer. All parents are encouraged to enrol their children.
- Cambodia Missions, 16-30 Jan 2018. Please see Elder Michael D Lee if you are interested.
- Daylight Saving commences next Sunday at 2am. Please advance your clock by 1 hour before retiring on Saturday.
- Kitchen Duty helpers - This week: Team A. Next week: Team B.

Praise & Thanksgiving
New worshippers & church activities in the past week
- Journey mercies for those arriving safely at their destinations
- Holy matrimony

- Healing for all who are unwell
- Journey mercies for those travelling
- Health in pregnancy
- Year 12 exams



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14 Bedford Square, Colonel Light Gardens, South Australia 5041