Tuesday, May 02, 2017

Book Review: Mother Tongue

Title: Mother Tongue: how our heritage shapes our story
Author: Leonard Sweet
Date: 2017
Publisher: NavPress

Leonard Sweet in his recent book, Mother Tongue: How Our Heritage Shapes Our Story” (NavPress, 2017), highlights his family's story, and more particularly the life of his mother, Mabel Boggs Sweet.

Written using the metaphor of a memory box, Sweet presents his family’s story by employing chapters titled with memory box “artefacts,” i.e. “Ma’s Wedding Ring, Dad’s Hellevision,” “Polio Braces,” “Lye Soap,” and 22 others. 

Sweet takes us into the home and lives of his parents and brothers. While Mable Boggs Sweet was the hub of that home, it is clear, that “in spite of all the embarrassment as kids growing up, we got the sense that to be a follower of Jesus is to be heir to an extraordinary heritage, host to the very Son of God, and harbinger of a promised future”.

It is clear in "Mother Tongue" that Jesus was first and foremost in Mabel Boggs Sweet’s mind and heart, and she imparted the Jesus way of life to her boys. 

But it was not all "sweet" in the Sweet clan. It was a fully human family, experiencing rejection and shunning from church leaders and church members, suffering the physical results of professional medical negligence, enduring the brutal impact of polio, and living through the rebellious years of teenage children. 

Mother Tongue: How Our Heritage Shapes Our Story” is a mixture of pain and humour, hardship and beauty. Sweet writes with both broad stokes and intimate details. But there is no doubt that the central character of the story and of the heritage passed down from Mother Boggs Sweet is Jesus Christ.

"Mother Tongue" is a great book for those who are beginning to raise their families to see the heritage they are passing down.

I received this book from the author in exchange for a review.

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