For more than 25 years Donna Otto has shared inspiration and practical wisdom. She is an Author and founder of Modern Homemakers (formerly Homemakers By Choice), a national organization which offers weekly teaching for a new generation of "counter culture" women who have made the choice to stay at home. To hundreds of young homemakers, Donna has been the wise, fun, Godly Aunt every young woman wishes she had. Each teaching session encourages women in their role as a woman, wife, mother, and keeper of the home.
“Adoration is the spontaneous yearning of the heart to worship, honor, magnify, and bless God. We ask nothing but to cherish him. We seek nothing but his exaltation. We focus on nothing but his goodness.” ~ Richard Foster
Ask yourself, “Am I living water or stagnant water?” There are 3 things you can do to become “living water.” 1. Learn His voice, 2. Abide in His love, and 3. Be relentlessly obedient.
What are you doing with your hands? Those of us who are having to stay at home during this pandemic, don’t miss what God is calling you to do. Jesus was relentlessly obedient! Let us be disciplined to use this time wisely.
Jesus cared for his mother, even from the cross! He creates new families among those who love him. God is giving us opportunities and calling us during the crisis of the coronavirus to care for SOMEONE by any small act of selflessness and love.
Life as we now know it in March 2020 is going to take sacrifice, cooperation and patience for things to turn back around. We must ‘do the next thing’ and pull ourselves together because we are all in this together.
Even though this is titled Seven Last Words, Donna indicates that she will cover the Seven Last Statements of Jesus over 7 podcasts. Take this time to prepare your hearts for Easter… not just for the bunnies, but the sacrifice of the Lamb of God and His resurrection.
We have lived through viral pandemics before. When most of the world is caught up in the fear of what may happen due to the Coronavirus, we as Christians are called to Love God and Love People. So teach your children practical ways to stay well, but also show them by example that you do not act out of fear.
Holly DelHousaye has mentored countless women over the years. She wrote The Soul Work Guide to Life, a self-guided workbook ‘that will help you focus on your unique contribution to God’s kingdom.’ Check out www.soulwork.org for more information.
Readying your heart for Easter should include spending time in the Word, which means slowing down and doing LESS during this season so you have MORE time with the Lord. Donna suggests less consumption and more compassion.
Scripture calls us to ‘abide’ or to stay in our marriages. It may be unpleasant at times, but God is doing a work in our lives to bear fruit, just as pruning helps a tree or bush to produce better fruit or flowers. Let God do what is necessary in your life to bring more joy to your relationships.
When Crystal stopped trying to ‘fix’ her husband, and instead lay him at the feet of Christ, she had a break-through! They reconciled and now have great joy in their relationship that could only come from God!
When Crystal’s marriage started to unravel she was devastated. She now realizes she was stuck trying to figure out “why” this was happening, but her faith in God and several books she read and even a song by Pink, helped her out of the pit she was in.
Part 2 will be available on 3/4.
Lent, a time set apart by the church, starts with Ash Wednesday and is a time to reflect, as Jesus did in the wilderness. It is a time to pray and make sacrifices, a time to focus on forgiveness. GET RE-FOCUSED and prepare your hearts now for Holy Week.
Jesus radically forgave his enemies and did it in a ‘quiet’ way. When we are hurried, and have overbooked our schedule, we are more likely to become annoyed or angry and less likely to be forgiving. Remember Jesus’ example of how he forgave Peter for denying him, or those who nailed him to the cross. THAT’S Radical Forgiveness!
Americans have lost civility and have become contemptuous. Donna wants to know your opinion about the ‘things she’s been thinking about’ such as politics, the impeachment proceedings, the State of the Union address, the way we talk to one another, etc. How is this all seeping into your life? In the end, we each need to take responsibility for our actions and we are commanded to love our enemies.
Elisabeth Elliot’s wise counsel on forgiveness comes from her experience of forgiving the people who murdered her husband and 4 of his colleagues in Ecuador. She said, “Forgiveness is a gift of grace,” and she remarkably extended that grace when she chose to forgive. She went back to Ecuador and continued to work among the same people who had taken her husband’s life. You could say she was an expert in forgiveness!
How many times are we instructed to forgive? 70 x 7? It’s not about a ‘number’ as much as it is about the fact that there is no limit to forgiving! Examine yourself in the process of forgiving. If you have been sinned against or offended, how are you going to go about reconciling with another? Donna has wonderful suggestions on ways to restore relationships.
Donna’s special guest is Jessica Hodge, a worship leader at a local Phoenix church, who shares with us the ways that she has developed a deeper prayer life and some different ways to worship through song.
In Luke 7, a ‘sinner woman’ washes Jesus’ feet with expensive oil and dries his feet with her hair. She is forgiven of all her sins because of her act of great love. As Christ followers, we are called to act with great love and forgive those who have offended or wounded us, just as Christ has forgiven us. Pass grace and love on!
Have you set a resolution for the new year? What has God been calling you to do? Forgive what has happened to you in the past because that will accomplish the call of God on your life! Press on toward the goal! Keep your commitments. Let your YES be YES and your NO be NO.
David Otto is one of the Voices of Modern Homemakers and reads a selection that will remind us just WHO is the reason for the season! Keep Jesus in your heart all year and you will always have the Christmas spirit!
In this excerpt from “The Call of Christmas Anthem” by The Skit Guys, we learn that we are called to be prepared for interruptions that we do not expect in our lives. Mary did not expect to be called to be the mother of the Savior of the world. Joseph did not expect to be in the position he was in, but he followed God’s will for his life. Contemplate how God is calling you this Christmas. Seek to do God’s will and not your plan for your life. Be silent; be still and know that He is God!
As we get older and our kids grow and don’t need us as much, we can find ourselves being emotional at the holidays. Andrea, Nancy and Donna read selections that will bring a tear or two, but will also help young moms with little ones to hold on to the moments you have with them while they are still young and to be intentional about celebrating the real reason for the season…Jesus!
How amazing it must have been for the shepherds who were visited by angels to inform them of the birth of The Messiah! They followed a bright star to the place where they were told Jesus would be. Jesus came in humility at a time when the government proclaimed there be a census taken. He was born to simple people and His simple birth reflects Jesus’ early position as a humble servant.
On the second Sunday of Advent, we light the Bethlehem candle and read Luke chapter 2. Try to picture Mary, 9 months pregnant, riding on a donkey, for a long distance just to partake in the census! What did they bring for provisions? Was there really no room for them in their homeland? Donna gives us much to think about!
Traci and Michael Tope talk about how Donna Otto’s teachings at HBC/Modern Homemakers have made a difference in their lives. Traci is one of the ‘Voices of Modern Homemakers’ and reads The Gift of the Magi by O. Henry. This treasure of a short story is more than 100 years old, and has a clear message of sacrificial love between a young couple who don’t have much, but they manage to buy extravagant gifts for one another.
We often desire the shortest, easiest way to things in life, but God’s directions may include a delay or detour, as was the case with the Israelites (Exodus 13:17-18). Don’t miss the lessons God has for you in the “wilderness” or delays and detours of life, which could be illness, isolation, or a broken relationship. Give God consent to work in your life by giving Him control!
Andrea is one half of “The Girlfriends” who sit down to chat with Donna from time to time. This time, we learn more about her life as a girl growing up in Canada, her modeling stint in Japan, and the life she has built with her husband, Shane, and 4 kids in Arizona. Each of the choices she has made along the way have led her to a fulfilling life in Christ.
Two change points in Donna’s life has led to greater spiritual formation: taking a Sabbath rest day during the week and finding a woman to be her spiritual director. If there is something about your life that you would like to do differently, listen and take notes as there are many tools and ideas Donna gives us to help us grow more spiritually.
Close friendships are a ‘call and response,’ meaning you are there for each other, praying for one another, and encouraging one another throughout your lives. A ‘friend of your right hand’ is willing to go through the ‘messy middle’ with you!
How many times have you wished you could take back something you’ve said? We have all used our tongue in unkind ways. Scripture tells us not to let any unwholesome or corrupt word come out of our mouths. Donna gives us practical ways to help us be more gracious women by checking ourselves in how we speak to others.
The Girlfriends are back and have a lot to say about personality types and friendship. They have great insight into the differences between introverts and extroverts because they live it and have learned how to temper their personalities. This is one fun interview!
There are several ingredients that are important to close friendships. Intimacy, as in a confidant, Acceptance, Humor, Willingness to Make Sacrifices, Perseverance, and Forgiveness. Donna has so much wisdom to share on this topic of Friendship, which is one of the themes for Modern Homemakers podcasts this season. Enjoy!
Dr. Greg Crow and Andrea Doan are Donna’s guests and they discuss the ever important issue of Communication in Marriage. They will cover the subtopics of conflict resolution and ways to respect each other. Good communication applies to all relationships, but especially with your spouse.
Even though the words ‘People Pleaser’ may have a negative connotation, Donna says that we SHOULD be looking to please others, but not to our detriment. She shares a lot of good wisdom and advice on the subject.
Intimacy with your spouse is a way of showing kindness. The Bible tells us that your body is his, and his body is yours. Join the Kindness Challenge with Shaunti Feldhahn on her web site and be reminded of ways to show kindness to your spouse.
Did you know that having a grateful spirit will benefit you spiritually, cognitively, psychologically, socially and physically? Not everyone is born with a grateful spirit, but 40 per cent of people who are grateful intentionally practice this habit. You can strengthen your ‘gratitude muscle’ with the suggestions Jane Wilson gives us in this lesson, in a culture that is less grateful than ever before.
Leading up to Donna’s quiz, which you will find on the Modern Homemakers web site, Donna unpacks Luke 17:11-19, which is the parable of the ten lepers who Jesus healed, but only one returned to thank Jesus.
What God calls us to in patience is waiting. Patience is ‘receiving the gift of time,’ not trying to hurry time up. Do you ever think about the coming of the Lord? God may not come when you think He should come, but He will be on time!
Each Tuesday and Thursday, Donna will offer a different tip on ways to show kindness to anyone who you may come in contact with. Join the 30-Day Kindness Challenge on Shaunti Feldhahn’s web site and let’s make the world a kinder place! You will be just as blessed as the person you are being kind to.
This teaching took place in front of a live audience over 20 years ago, and it is so full of wisdom from a mother of 8 children! Valerie Shepard offers encouragement for moms who want to spend time with our Lord each day, but find it difficult to do so when our children want and need so much of our attention. Be a good example to your children by intentionally spending time with God so you can be filled with His love that you, in turn, will lavish on your family.
What do Friendship, Kindness, Girlfriends, Spiritual Formation and Trust have in common? They are all subjects Donna will be covering this season and she gives us an overview of what to expect and the interviews to look forward to. Get ready to grow!
Donna’s special guest is her dear friend Elisabeth Elliot’s daughter, Valerie, who is here to talk about her book titled ”Devotedly,” which is the account of her parents’ courtship based on the letters they exchanged and their love story. Even though Jim Elliot’s life ended tragically, this love story is more about their obedience to God and following His will for their lives, which is something we all can learn from.
Just as the Welcoming Prayer, which Donna has been reading at the beginning of each podcast, is about consent, Christ is calling us to consent to a deeper way with Him. Adopt kindness as a way of life by remembering how considerate Jesus was to allow interruptions in His travels. We miss A LOT if we don’t stop for the interruptions by our kids, our spouses, and others.
Are you lighting the light with kindness? Colossians 3:12 tells us, “Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience…” Jesus modeled kindness, so those of us who have accepted Christ have Him living in us and should be shining for Him.
Amy Cavness is talking with Donna about the book “Doing Life with Your Adult Children” by Jim Burns. Amy has 3 adult children and shares some great nuggets of wisdom on some of the ways she and her husband learned to let go and let God design who they were to become.
Donna’s list of books she read over the summer include The Kindness Challenge, Devotedly, Doing Life with Your Adult Children, Gift from the Sea, Basking in His Presence, Spiritual Rhythms for the Enneagram, The Sacrament of the Present Moment, A Lamp for My Feet, and The Mitford Years series. So much to talk about…so little time!
Welcome back to a new season! Donna has spent the summer planning and preparing for a year chock full of interviews with many people who she would love for all of us to know. Our theme for the year will be FRIENDSHIP, and we hope you will participate in the Kindness Challenge with Shaunti Feldhahn coming soon!
God calls us all to obedience. Donna tells us to ask ourselves 3 questions: 1. What am I being disobedient about? 2. How is my life complicated? 3. How much is enough? The most important thing we can do is make space in our day for time with God. Just sit in His presence as you may have once done with your spouse before you were married, or when you held your infant in your arms, bonding with each other by just being together.
There’s a reason that this was one of the top 10 podcasts from the last 2 years! Donna packs so much wisdom into this final part of the Training the Will of a Child series. Are you practicing authentic Christian living? You need to model a life of faith if you want to create a hunger for faith in your children. A holy mother gives instruction, gives direction, and establishes rules! Train your children to have self-control and teach them self-denial.
It is common for followers of Christ to seek the approval of others, BUT God’s approval matters most! We are to imitate Christ and outdo one another in preference and consider others as more important than ourselves. The many questions that Donna has for us will make us think about whose approval we are trying to win.
Nehemiah had a vision and consulted with the Lord before asking the king if he could return to help rebuild the city of his people. Nehemiah refused to be sidetracked by those who wanted to do him harm while he was rebuilding the walls of Jerusalem. As women, we need to protect ourselves from things that will discourage or distract us from doing the work of a mom/homemaker.