A Homemaker’s Journey to Finding Identity
What does it mean to be a woman and to make a home? Does it mean homeschooling children or going to the office every day? Cooking gourmet meals and making Pinterest-worthy home décor? In Making It Home: Finding My Way to Peace, Identity, and Purpose, author and blogger Emily Wierenga takes readers on an unconventional journey through marriage, miscarriage, foster parenting and the daily struggle of longing to be known, inviting them into a quest for identity in the midst of life’s daily interruptions.
As a world traveler and “recovering subversive,” Wierenga struggles to define and embrace the idea of home. Writing of her experiences as a child, wife, mother, and woman, she discovers that God is more than a divine entity—He is a loving Abba who calls her ‘daughter’. . Whether it’s learning how to be vulnerable as a wife, fostering two little boys in addition to her own, being rejected as an author, healing from a spiritually scarring miscarriage, or traveling to Africa and experiencing a failed adoption, Wierenga journeys straight into the loving arms of a heavenly Father, who teaches her that it’s not about what she does, but who she is that matters.
Through soul-stirring prose, Wierenga helps women understand that homemaking is much more than old-fashioned tradition; rather, it’s a timeless art requiring mind, body, and spirit.
Proceeds from Making It Home will benefit Wierenga’s non-profit, The Lulu Tree, which exists to bring hope and healing to mothers in the slums of Uganda.
Posts from the Book Club:
- When You’re Scared You Might Miss Your One, Extraordinary Life
- How to Fall in Love with Your Husband, Over and Over and Over Again
- How to See the World Through the Eyes of God
- How to be a Fear-Less Woman in a Fear-Full World
- The Secret to Finding Joy — And Why the North American Church Hasn’t
“Emily gently reminds us that a home is far more than a house. When we open our doors and hearts to others–both far and near–we create a precious space where God and humanity reside richly together.”
–Margaret Feinberg, author of Fight Back with Joy
“Emily Wierenga has a gift for taking readers on journeys of the soul. If you need hope for the future, courage for the next step, and an insightful, honest guide to walk with you, Making It Home will help you find your way.”
–Holley Gerth, Wall Street Journal bestselling author of You’re Already Amazing
“In her beautiful new memoir, Making It Home, Emily Wierenga writes with captivating and uncommon vulnerability, sharing the insecurities and fears that held her hostage and the dwelling place of hope she found when she was willing to courageously love and be loved, right where she was.”
–Renee Swope, bestselling author of A Confident Heart
“Emily Wierenga is one of those rare and extraordinary writers willing to lay it all out there, every painful, private, unbecoming detail of her life. Yet somehow her story becomes your story. Yes, the details might be different but the struggles, doubts, pressures, and fears are the same. But here’s where Emily rises above even the most extraordinary writers: her hopes become your hopes. Her faith becomes your faith. Her prayer becomes your prayer. Her ever-faithful God becomes your God, and through the pages of this book, you feel him pull you to his chest and assure you he has never left your side. Making It Home is nourishment for the heart, clarity for the eyes, and divine comfort for the soul.”
–Rachel Macy Stafford, New York Times bestselling author of Hands Free Mama
Home (Pages 19-20)
“Home is the pile of books, Thomas the Train and Dora the Explorer and Winnie the Pooh, thrown from Kasher’s bed because he always pages through them before he goes to sleep and then he habitually tosses them. It’s the bear’s ear stuck in his mouth, which he sucks. It’s the infant newness that still clings to his two year-old cheek during sleep.
It’s the long lashes of Aiden, the green bunny in his arms and the flashlight by his hand. It’s his footy pajamas with the feet cut off because he’s three and a half and has broken through the toes.
Beside me, a rough-hewn bookshelf made by Trent out of barn boards. There’s the coffee table made from the same boards, the children’s chairs—Mickey, Minnie, and Dora, which are bent out of shape from Aiden and Kasher using them to wrestle.
Home is me climbing the stairs to the kitchen, some of the crab apples we picked still piled in a bucket and the rest turning into apple leather in the oven. Bowls of apple juice waiting to be frozen on the counter, and it’s Trent emerging from the office and seeing me. Saying, “It feels like I haven’t seen you in forever,” when really it’s been twenty minutes.
The house hums like it’s in love: the dryer’s tenor, the dishwasher’s soprano, and the refrigerator with its low bass.”
Love (Pages 121-122)
“I want my home to be a place where I love people into being.
We’re all like broken-down houses—no amount of paint or wallpaper can fill the holes.
And I’m learning it’s okay to be broken like this. To eat chocolate raisins and scroll through Facebook like this while the flood rises. It’s okay to not be as collected as a Pinterest mom who has a chalkboard with tonight’s menu on it, or a bouncy castle for a birthday, or a string quartet for an anniversary.
It’s okay to not always have my hair washed or the jar of cookies filled. It’s okay to order takeout. A mother’s greatest saving grace is the number of a good Chinese restaurant. And it’s okay.
So long as there is love.”
Making It Home (Page 213)
“We can never do enough. But only because of the extraordinary love of an Abba who risks everything—who runs down that road, his cloak flapping in the wind—to meet his prodigals.
And when I get tempted to forget what matters?
That’s when I pull my boys close. I get down on the floor and embrace this quiet, humble, serving life. The kind that becomes bigger the smaller you get.
Life around the coffee table—the one made of boards from Papa Wierenga’s homemade sawmill, thirty-five years ago.
Our life. It may not be glamorous, but it’s ours. With all of its tears and peanut butter smudges, with all of its wine stains on the carpet and laundry heaped high.
And we’re making it home.”
#MAKINGITHOME STREET TEAM RESOURCES
GRAPHICS (right-click to “save image as” and then Pin or share on FB/Twitter)
OTHER WAYS TO SPREAD THE WORD:
- Write a review of #MakingItHome and post it on Amazon, GoodReads, Barnes & Noble, and/or ChristianBook.com. Just a few lines would be wonderful—nothing long or fancy. You can copy and paste the same review to every website. Reviews are especially important for helping the book get more visibility, especially on Amazon.
- Post a review of #MakingItHome on your blog anytime between August 24th and September 14, or in the days following
- Spread the word on your favorite social media channels: Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, using the hashtag #MakingItHome
- Pin images of the #MakingItHome cover or any of the related banners/buttons/pinnables to your relevant boards on Pinterest, or to the MAKING IT HOME Pinterest board (https://www.pinterest.com/emilywierenga/making-it-home/).
- Share your favorite quotes from #MakingItHome on Facebook and Twitter, and if you have an e-version of the book, highlight your favorite quotes. Here are some sample quotes for sharing (you can also find graphics for these on the Making It Home page above):
>>It’s in leaning on humanity that we glimpse the divine.
>>And maybe the secret to all of life is to never stop reaching out in the dark. To never stop taking hold of each other’s hands. To never let go.
>>My heart has stretch marks.
>>And I need to be held in a way that gives me permission to be dust. Human
>>I want my home to be a place where l love people into being.
- Ask me to guest post/provide an excerpt/interview for your blog; I would be honored and will do my best to oblige!
- Here are some sample tweets:
Congrats to @emily_wierenga on her new memoir! Read the first two chapters FREE, here: http://www.emilywierenga.com/making-it-home/ #MakingItHome
- Ask your local library and/or church library to order a copy of the book.
- Ask your local independent bookstore to carry #MakingItHome
- Was there a pivotal moment in your life that God used to show you your purpose via a calling to ministry?
- How do you balance all aspects of your “purpose” as a woman? With family, souse, children, friend, leader, etc.
- Have you struggled with finding your identity in Christ? How?
- Have you struggled to trust or believe in God? Share the story and tell us how it was resolved.
- Have you endured a long period of suffering or waiting for an answer to prayer? How did you find peace through that experience?
- Share some life obstacles you experienced believing your identity in Christ and how you were able to work through those.
- Do you have an area in your life currently you are struggling to find peace in? How are you approaching resolving this area?
- What has your journey towards purpose looked like?
- Do you feel your purpose is set? Or do you feel God may change it? How do you embrace that change if / when it comes?
- What would you say to a woman struggling to find peace in the midst of scary, uncertain circumstances?
- What would you say to a woman who can not let go of her past mistakes to embrace her new identity in Christ?
- What would you say to a woman who is struggling to find her purpose?
- What would you say to a woman weary of striving?
- How would you encourage a woman who feels unnoticed, left out, or no longer relevant as she grows older?
- How can the older generation encourage the younger generation to stay focused on God’s peace, identity and purpose through multiple life changes and seasons?
- Share ways you incorporate spiritual disciplines into your life to focus on peace, identity and purpose?