This week, we're continuing with Part Two of the interview with Audrey Broggi. Audrey is the wife of Dr. Carl Broggi (from Search the Scriptures ministries and the Pastor of Community Bible Church in Beaufort, S.C.). She leads the women's ministry there -- Mothering from the Heart -- a ministry that has greatly helped and encouraged me on my own mothering pilgrimage. When I wrote to Audrey, she graciously agreed to do this interview, which I pray will be a great blessing to those who read it. She has been a role-model in my life for her strong and uncompromising stand on Biblical womanhood and parenting. I encourage you to glean from her insights and her Godly, encouraging wisdom from God's Word.
Click here to read Part One.
Your ministry, Mothering From the Heart, has had a profound impact upon the lives of so many women. How did this ministry begin and grow?
What started as a heart for my family and biblical mothering - teaching the practicality of the Bible to my own children and others they brought home has grown into my teaching the practicality of God's Word to women as well. My heart's desire has always been to know God intimately, to obey Him earnestly, and to see His hand in the small, everyday moments of life.
So with that heart, I opened my home and invited women in our church to come and together we'd study the biblical principles of mothering. I told them that I was just passing on to them what God was teaching me. I told them that I didn’t have it all together or all figured out - that the “jury,” so to speak, was still out in terms of my own family. BUT, God’s word is true and I was clinging onto Him for dear life.
My first study brought so many women. My living room was packed - standing, in the hall, up the stairs. I was - I don’t know - amazed and thankful. But I was also struck with the need.
We gathered for 6 weeks and explored the Scriptures together, laughed, and prayed. Then when the first study concluded, other women asked when I would teach it again. so I did - and then when our first building was built, we held it there. Which eventually led to a conference and many since then.
How do you believe Mothering From the Heart has impacted the lives of women and their families over the years?
All I know is what I hear from women who write to me. Their lives are forever changed as they see the beautiful design from Scripture and apply His word. Perspective makes all the difference in the world.
Why do you see a need for the traditional role of motherhood to be reinforced and embraced within the church and as a testimony to the world that we live in?
God created family - He knows how best it should function and work. When Christian families live out His design, the gospel is proclaimed.
Your authenticity and “down-to-earth” approach with women as well as your compassion and refusal to compromise regarding the principles of the Scriptures are so refreshing. How have you experienced women benefiting from such a straightforward approach to God’s Word?
Again, I can only share what women share with me. They seem to appreciate the truth. Serious women don’t want to be entertained. They want the truth. They see the foolishness of the world and they also realize that too many women Bible teachers don’t really speak to the real struggles of life in the home in terms of how the Bible can come to life in terms of
loving a difficult man or raising sinful children. Women can be all “superspiritual” with their gal pals but the rubber meets the road in the home. When the husband says something or does something mean or insensitive, when the kids are fighting, when food burns, when the baby is teething and fussing 24/7, when life is chaotic, women must learn how God’s word is real in the middle of their domestic lives. It’s not just about being at some women’s event or having me-time. I see my role as filling up the tanks of women so they can walk with God no matter what life throws at them. My heart is that after being at one of my studies or retreats, they would be refreshed to do what God has called them to do. And know that He is faithful. Women don’t need some list - they need God.
How did raising your own children teach you more about the joys and difficulties of mothering?
Life is fleshed out in the home. While a woman doesn’t have to be a wife or a mother to teach the truth of God’s word, those things certainly give her experience. I think of Paul’s words in 2 Corinthians:
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction so that we will be able to comfort those who are in any affliction with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For just as the sufferings of Christ are ours in abundance, so also our comfort is abundant through Christ. But if we are afflicted, it is for your comfort and salvation; or if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which is effective in the patient enduring of the same sufferings which we also suffer; and our hope for you is firmly grounded, knowing that as you are sharers of our sufferings, so also you are sharers of our comfort.
Wow, think of the implications of this for mothers who want to help other mothers. If we will take seriously our struggles and learn what God wants to teach us through them, we have something to pass on. Not just opinions, but truth.
How does your relationship to Jesus Christ impact your views on mothering and the home?
His Word is the foundation of all I believe and teach concerning mothering and the home.
What spiritual battles have you come up against through refusing to compromise on the principles that God lays out in His Word?
Without being specific, sometimes women get angry with the message but they project the anger on me. That’s ok. I try to be gentle when talking about hot button issues but often that doesn’t matter to a woman …
Who are some of your favorite women of the faith, past or present? Why?
In terms of well-known Christian women, I would say Elisabeth Elliot and Nancy DeMoss. Both are strong believers and as far as I know, have never compromised the truth of Scripture as it concerns women’s issues.
I especially appreciate Nancy because as a single woman, she has been faithful to know and understand and teach not only God’s good design for being single, but also His good gifts of marriage, children, and the home.
It is clear from your and your husband’s ministries that Scripture is central to your practical decisions and in your walk with the Lord. Why do you believe that the Word of God must be the basis for the way that we practically live out our Christian walk?
Since He is our Creator, He knows how we should live. Even if I don’t understand, He is good.
Is there any final advice that you would like to give to wives and mothers who are striving to live their lives in a way that is pleasing to the Lord?
I love the beginning of Hebrews 12: Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us (those men and women of faith listed in Hebrews 11), let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us (women must be honest about their distractions and encumbrances and get rid of both “OK” things and sin), and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus (not on other women), the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
For consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.
There is so much in this world to grow weary of and lose heart over. BUT as we fix our eyes on Jesus, He carries us and gives us hope.
Thank you so much for sharing this wisdom with us, Audrey. It has been such a blessing to have you here. God bless you as you continue to serve Him through your ministry to women.
You might find me on the following link-ups:
Strangers and Pilgrims on Earth, The Modest Mom, What Joy is Mine, Yes They Are All Ours, Missional Call, A Mama's Story, Mom's the Word, Rich Faith Rising, Time Warp Wife, Cornerstone Confessions, Mom's Morning Coffee, So Much at Home, Raising Homemakers, Hope in Every Season, A Wise Woman Builds Her Home, Woman to Woman Ministries, Whole-Hearted Home, A Soft Gentle Voice, My Daily Walk in His Grace, Messy Marriage, My Teacher's Name is Mama, The Charm of Home, Graced Simplicity, Children Are A Blessing, Mittenstate Sheep and Wool, Imparting Grace, Preparedness Mama, A Look at the Book, Essential Thing Devotions, Count My Blessings, Beauty Observed, Christian Mommy Blogger, Renewed Daily, Soul Survival, Good Morning Mondays, The HomeAcre Hop, Mommy Moments Link Up, Grace and Truth Linkup, Faith Filled Friday, Saturday Soiree Blog Party, Tell It To Me Tuesdays