JEFFERSON CITY – Erin Hawley’s faith and dependence on God has grown the most – not in her years at Yale Law School or while working as a clerk for U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts, not even as a supportive and loving wife to Missouri Attorney General and current Missouri Republican nominee for U.S. Senate Josh Hawley – but it’s been during her role as mother to her two young sons, Elijah and Blaise, that God brought Hawley closer to Himself.
Hawley, who has worked primarily from home since the birth of her first child, is familiar with the joys and struggles of the working-mom life.
It’s from those busy days and interrupted sleep that her book, Living Beloved: Lessons from My Little Ones about the Heart of God, took shape.
“Those early months [of motherhood] brought me to the end of myself in a way nothing else has, and thus to the beginning of God,” Hawley writes. “The promised grace, the working of all things to the good, the God-plan, was ever so much more wonderful than I could have dreamed, because God was there. He met me at my worst when I was not enough (and still am not) and proved Himself sufficient.”
Hawley frames her book around the beautiful comparison and direction Jesus gives his disciples in Matthew 18 when He says: “Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.” Matt. 18:3-4 ESV
Hawley parked her mind on that wisdom and then carefully examined her sons and their natural behaviors and needs to gain more understanding about what the Lord meant.
He didn’t mean the childish traits that can and should be corrected (she admits her boys certainly battle their sin natures, too), but the simple characteristics that children naturally possess: trust, transparency, boldness, limitless joy and more.
“Children, for example, don’t work at being children. They just are,” she writes. “Being childlike means becoming more without doing more. Our children show us how. In their desire just to be with Mom, they show us how to lean up in a relationship with Jesus.”
Through solid biblical teaching and her own personal stories, Hawley unpacks how a child’s identity is secure and uninhibited because he or she understands who they are in relationship to their parents.
For anyone who takes care of these small and (yes) needy people every day, each chapter of Living Beloved opens up a wonderfully fresh perspective on why children are the way they are and how we can and should take a page out of their book to become the children of God we are meant to be.
Inside each chapter of Living Beloved, a tired and busy mom can appreciate the small wonders of their children and their delightful dependence, a pure example of the unconditional love they have for their moms and dads.
Josh Hawley, who wrote the book’s forward, knows Living Beloved is a perfect representation of his wife’s heart. He said she wrote the book to inspire, to come alongside, and to invite everyone who reads to receive the truth that they are cherished children, “loved by God before we have done a thing, loved for who we are as His.”
Copies of Living Beloved: Lessons from My Little Ones about the Heart of God are available Oct. 23 through the Focus on the Family online store and Amazon.com.