Monday, December 15, 2008


I am so excited to host my first Blog Giveaway.

Karen Hossink, over at Surviving Motherhood recently released her second book. It is a devotional for mothers. I love to read Karen's blog. Her vulnerability and insight into the WORD as it relates to being a mom speaks to my heart and encourages me in this adventure we call Motherhood.

Below is a short interview with Karen about her book. At the end of the post, find out how to win and autographed copy of Finding Joy.

How did the ministry of Irritable Mother get started?

Do you want the quick answer? That would be GOD.

The longer version is this: I always wanted to be a mom, but once I had children I found out being a mom wasn't going to be as easy as I thought. In fact, there came a time when I thought my children were "ruining" me – that I could be a nice person if it weren't for them.

In time I began to understand that when my kids are grown up, they aren't the only ones who will have changed. I discovered I am growing in this process, too. And I thought, "Maybe when I have a better understanding of this growth, I'll see if I can share about it at MOPS." [Mothers of PreSchoolers]

About two years and several thoughts later God used my mentor to finally push me over the edge and pursue that MOPS opportunity. My intention was to speak at my church, and that's all. But I made contact with some other MOPS leaders and spoke for their groups, too. I think there were seven or eight that first year.

Then came my first book, and about 40 more groups each of the next two years. And now here I am in the middle of a speaking and writing ministry – so much more than I envisioned back in the spring of 2005 – and I am loving every minute of it.

You just released a new book. Please tell us about it.

It's called Finding Joy and it is a devotional for moms. (Though my husband read my manuscript and commented, "Hey, even a guy could learn from this book." I need to hire him as my marketer!)

First God showed me I could have HOPE for the future, because He is using my children and my mothering struggles to make me into the woman He wants me to be. That's what I wrote about in my first book, Confessions of an Irritable Mother.

Now God has shown me I can have JOY in the present because He is using my hard times to reveal Himself to me. God shows up right in the middle of my struggles and speaks to my heart, and those are the stories I have written in Finding Joy.

At the end of each devotion I have written a short section called "Your Turn," in which I ask questions of the reader and offer suggestions for prayer and fellowship with God. My hope is God will use this book to help other women learn to recognize His presence in the middle of their struggles – and find joy.

What would you like readers to know about you?

I am proof that Jesus lives.

A couple months ago I did some special things for my kids and I got lots of comments on my blog about what a "great mom" I am. Those comments made me laugh, and they caused me to give praise to God.

I am a broken woman. I am selfish and self-centered. I want what I want. Period. The fact that I ever think of my children before myself, the fact that I do things for them even though those things go against what I want, can only be explained by the Truth that Jesus Christ is alive and well and at work in me – transforming me into His likeness.

More than knowing something about me, I want your readers to know Jesus is real. And how do I know Jesus is real? Because I know who I am without Him, and that woman would never be called a "great mom."


Karen Hossink, the self-proclaimed “Irritable Mother,” walks readers through her personal parenting moments, through which she discovers a deeper relationship with the Lord. God has used Hossink’s own children to transform her and reveal Himself to her more fully—now, through this devotional, she passes on insights and personal revelations to the reader. Walk with her to a place of prayerful introspection and deeper faith in Jesus Christ.

Ann Kroeker, Author

The Contemplative Mom (Shaw Books)

Another book releasing in the summer of 2009 (David C. Cook)

God continues to use and transform this "irritable mother" into a joyful servant of our Most High God. Karen Hossink blends real-life situations we all face in frustration as moms, and brings out the biblical correlation so we can see ourselves in relation to God. You will laugh and cry and be filled with uncontained emotion as you read.

Most of all, you will be blessed beyond measure by this true-blue best friend who is willing to spend priceless moments with you. Finding Joy is a MUST READ for all moms.

Julie Baker, Founder of TimeOut for Women! and Author

TimeOut for Holiness at Home (Cook Communications)

If you ever feel like being a mother is the best and the worst of all possible jobs, this is the devotional for you! In Finding Joy: More Confessions of an Irritable Mother, Karen Hossink reminds all of us to stop long enough to listen to God’s voice in the middle of frustration, interruptions, household noise, constant questions, and everyday chaos. This book will let you know you are not alone and will give you renewed hope and courage as you face the daily challenges of being a mom. Don’t miss it!

Carol Kent, Speaker and Author

When I Lay My Isaac Down (NavPress)

A New Kind of Normal (Thomas Nelson)


To win an autographed copy of this book, leave a comment telling me one way you FIND JOY in being a mom... or how your mom brings JOY to you.

Winner will be randomly chosen after 6 p.m. on Friday, December 19. Please be sure and leave your email so I can contact you.


Crystal said...

Well, aren't YOU just moving up in the world of blogging to be giving away freebies now! :) Love it!

I find JOY in my kids when I listen to them. They have so much to say and many times they are the ones reminding me what God's word says! Even at 5 & 3 years old!

Tracy said...

The times I find joy in being a mom when my kids out of the blue give me a hug or just say "I love you", it allows me to stop and enjoy the moment. Tracy email:

Carol said...

I find joy in my grown kids when I see my daughter and daughter-in-love laughing, cooking, and "playing" together - and then the joy is doubled when I hear the laughter of my grandkids playing together - hugging me - and calling me "Gramcracker" - and especially when I see the beautiful smile of my new grandson - what a blessing children matter what their ages!!!!
Thank you Jesus for all my kids!!!

Tami said...

I find joy in their laughter, in their giggles, in their silliness. I REALLY find joy when they love each other and have fun together instead of beating on each other! Being a Mom is, by far, the biggest joy in life there ever was or ever will be! I love being a Mom!

Anonymous said...

I find joy in discovering my kids' personalities. I'm consistently amazed at their perspectives on things. In describing my daughters, if life were a party, the oldest would be the hostess, making sure everyone felt welcome and comfortable. The second would be the entertainment.

Tammy A

Gwen said...

I find joy in their curiosity about the world around them. Sometimes I see them just staring at something in awe and wonder. Those are the times that I go over by them and stare with them and we either wonder together or I tell them how something works. When it's something dealing with the way God made things, like a butterfly or leaves changing, we love to take that moment to say how amazing God is.

Kristen said...

There was an error so sorry if this appears twice. Please just delete one.
I find joy seeing my daughter learn something new each and every day!

tnajk at cox dot net

JT said...

I'll play! This looks like a great book!

I find joy in my kids when Rosie tries to feed me and then pulls it away right when I go to bite. The giggle that follows is the best! I find joy when Nick asks me to pray for his little people toy that fell out of his toy truck. I find joy singing to them at night and snuggling with them in the morning! This is the best calling ever!

liz.wolfe said...

I have a "little one" and I find joy in the simplicity of her life and it helps me take a step back and relax when my life seems to be going crazy. Children are such a gift...sometimes I think I need her more than she needs me.

Anonymous said...

I find joy in the zany, off-the-wall comments that sometimes escape out of my kid's mouths...things that make me stop what I'm doing and take the time to laugh out loud...they sure can come up with some doozies! Being a mom is so much more fun when you can laugh. :)

-Jessica V.

Kasha said...

I find joy in the morning. My youngest is the first to rise and he always comes in my room and says mommy I need to lay by you because your hot. He loves cuddling. Then my middle child will get up and he will lay on the other side of me and we just talk and start are day off together. Then my daughter will finally get up-she is not a morning person-she likes her sleep. But, she will come in the bed and then one of the boys have to let her lay by me for awhile. I love it. They want to be by me and talk to me and it's just so peaceful and they usually are all getting along. I want to cherish these moments because I know they are not going to want to do this forever. I also find joy when they discover new things in Christ. My daughter is seeking the baptism in the Holy Spirit and she wants to learn about it and I think it is amazing. I really could go on and on but, I won't. I truly love being a mom and I am so blessed with three children of the Lord. Motherhood is hard but so rewarding. I am just glad my children are so forgiving of me when I mess up just like our Heavenly Father is!!!

Anonymous said...

When I catch them being kind to one another, helping someone out with no reward expected, being a faithful friend, resisting gossip, making people (myself included) laugh or feel better about the day they're having. Seeing Jesus in them!

Thanks for the nudge to reflect on how much JOY they give me. :-) Being 'mom' is good work but it's often hard work.

LAURIE said...

Wow. I can't pass up anything that is FREE! and it sounds like an awesome book.

There are many things that bring me "joy" when it comes to my kids but if I had to narrow it down it would be my joy comes from doing things for my kids. Whether it is folding their laundry or helping them with a science project or buying them a "just because I was thinking of you" gift. I love being their Mom!

You have inspired me... maybe I will do a giveaway soon on my blog.... -blessings, Laurie

Sandy said...

I find joy knowing that I am an influence in their life and when I see them doing good deeds and living right, I am overjoyous!

Anonymous said...

I find joy in seeing the world through a childs eyes. Even the little things they get excited about.Like snow days !!. I have also learned joy from my mom. She always has a smile on her face and that is contagious. Diane Noce

Jaime said...

Being that I tend to lean toward the "Dark Side of the Force" --translation: "I consider myself a pessimist"-- I do tend to struggle with FINDING joy.

So I guess JOY FINDS ME through my children in the following ways:

1.) I believe that at 4 years old, Kayla is really beginning to develop a sensitivity to the things of God. She'll say, "I'm so in love with Jesus today." Or "My heart is beating really fast...God must be trying to tell me something." And when I hear those things, I well up with tears and am completely humbled because I know that I'm part of developing that in her. And I consider it such a privilege and an honor.

2.) Karis is only 1 but her laugh and ginormous smile can pull me out of the deepest funk. She is truly a joy-filled baby so I can't help but be assaulted by it on a regular basis.

P.S. Karen Hossink spoke at our MOPS group last year. She's great. I subscribe to her e-mail, actually!

Anonymous said...

I find joy when my youngest, who is an early riser, sneaks into my bed in the morning to "cuddlebug" and talk... LOVE that! I find joy with my oldest when I watch her interact with people, especially senior saints. It warms my heart that she loves going to the nursing home with them to sing and spend time with the elderly. THAT she didn't get from me, sorry to say, I grew up terrified of elderly people!and ashamed of it! That's why it brings me such joy to see her loving it!
thanks MaryBeth- YOU bring joy to me!and so many others!

Peggy O. said...

WHAT!!! Oh....I have to write an essay on what brings me joy as a mom.....the school bell!

Just kidding...but isn't that funny. Have a great snowy day.

Love you, Peggy

Anonymous said...

I find joy in my kids ages 12 and 14 when I see them wanting to please me or my husband. It is easier for me to give out compliments then my husband. I make it a point to look for the good things the kids are doing. If I see the kids doing something around the house that I haven't asked them to do, I give them a lot of praise. The smile on their faces is priceless.
Jodi Weiser

Smiles from the Shaffer's said...

Woohoo! A freebie!

I find joy in family outings and vacations and listening to my children laugh together!

Heather @ Not a DIY Life said...

I find JOY in my daughter when she smiles and laughs. I also find joy in my friendship with my mom.

And here's my blog post of my ornament - I loved it!

Chatty Kelly said...

I find joy in the unexpected hugs and words of affirmation. Not when they say it because they WANT something - but just the unexpected hug or "I love you mom!" Makes my day!

Joanie said...

I find joy in my daughter as she says "I'm turning into my mother! I say things just like her and do things just like her!" hee hee hee She will be 22 on Dec. 24th this year. I know it is the joy of the Lord in her life, so that brings me joy!

misty said...

JOY... i find it when i take the time to look & listen to my boys. to look into their eyes, cute faces when they are telling me something. and to see those BIG smiles. that brings me PURE JOY!

Jeff & Angie Ratzlaff Family said...

Wow looks like a great book give away.

I think one of the greatest joys in being a mother is "having no greater joy then to know that your children are walking in the truth." Some days my children will say something back to me that I tought them about Jesus and I just need to sit back in WOW because they are really getting it. "To live for God's Glory is my highest aim."
Merry Christmas

Netta said...

If I just stop for a few seconds and look into the eyes of one of my children I remember that all of them are on loan from God...
and I'd better treat them as such!
I can ONLY do this by listening to the voice of Jesus (and not all the blah, blah, blah inside my head! ha)

abcdbanda said...

i find JOY just watching my kids play...proof that i am doing a good job as their mommy:) thanks for this awesome chance to win!

Anonymous said...

I find joy in my children when I see amazing little glimpses of the grown ups they are slowly striving to become.


Anonymous said...

I am pregnant, due in April, and so far the greatest joy has been being my child's only caretaker and source of nourishment and life!! I cannot wait until Spring and we can meet him!

Kathy said...

I find joy in watching my daughter love her now disabled son, waiting for a miracle, providing for him, praying over him, crying over him, believing God for him.

It's only a mother (and father) who would give up their job, their life, to care for a child who was one day "normal" and the next day...waiting for a miracle. And do it with joy.

Sarah Gerbers said...

i find joy in being a mom in so many ways, but one is seeing her learn new things. my daughter is about to turn one, and it makes my heart smile when she discovers she can do new things. recently she started singing...really loud...and she loves it. it's so cute. and i love every moment of it!
email is

Amanda said...

I find joy in being a mom when my son who is seven asks if I will hold him and hug him and when my three year old says, "Momma, I want to hold you." They are such snugglers!

Leah said...

I have found joy having little Boppli wake me up in the middle of the night (after 4 hours sleep) and keep me up with nothing to do but pray. Ok, so maybe sometimes I have to CHOOSE joy, but it's still a gift that I didn't have 3.5 months ago. :-)

Anonymous said...

oh no!!! I'm way too late- I had every intention of being part of your giveaway :(