Raising kids. Keeping House. Choosing joy, every day.

Interview with Karen Ehman and a Keep.It.Shut Giveaway


Today, we have an interview with KAREN EHMAN, a writing friend and hospitality kindred spirit about her new book Keep.It.Shut. Woo hoo!

Karen’s book A Life That Says Welcome is one of my all-time favorites and her super easy yeasty crescent roll recipe is now my old standby as well. (pg. 145)

IMG_3580If you’ve never read it, consider adding it to your hospitality library.

But, I digress, because today we’re here to talk about her new book Keep.It.Shut, a book about using our words wisely. And not just WHAT we say, but the WAY in which we say them.



Here are a few great thoughts from the book:

keep it shut

“God is patient. He doesn’t fly off the handle in anger. His love never runs out. His faithfulness never takes a vacation day. And God’s Son knew how to impart grace when he spoke while here on earth: “All spoke well of him and were amazed at the gracious words that came from his lips.” Luke 4:22″

“When we flip-flop these two commands—being slow to listen and quick to speak—it often leads to the third part of that verse: we are quick to become angry.[sic] speaking too soon combined with not listening leads to conflict–and conflict leads to anger.”

“If we want to avoid offending our friends–or committing any number of verbal sins–we need to control our lips. And taking a first step can be simpler than you might imagine. When we sense the Holy Spirit telling us that things are starting to go downhill, we can simply say, “I’m sorry. I’m talking too much.”

There are just too many great quotes in this book to mention, so without further ado…let’s get started. :)

Sarah: When I think of Karen Ehman, I naturally think hospitality, family traditions, etc. What experiences prompted you to write Keep.It.Shut?

Karen: Having my mouth get me in so much trouble over the decades of my life! Seriously. It is the old case of any strength carried to an extreme becoming a weakness. I enjoy talking. But I let it get out of hand often. And when it does, I have often found myself in a heap of trouble.
Sarah: What hope would you give to the woman who has had a lifelong struggle with foolish/sinful speech patterns? What gospel hope could you offer?
Karen: Christ redeems and makes all things new. That even applies to our words! When we are intentional to follow his example and to be quick to ask forgiveness when we do sin with our mouths, we can start to form new habits and patterns over time. Then, instead of constantly using our mouths in a way that is not pleasing, we can begin to see that happen only every once in a while as the habit of our speech becomes more godly.
Sarah: Struggling with words is something we all struggle with to some extent or another. And then there are some women who seem to blurt anything that comes into their mind like a verbal drive by shooting. I have a friend whose mother in law has no “filter” and it can be hurtful. I know we’re not responsible for the behavior of others, but what ¬†do we need to know about these women in order to be more compassionate to them and love them well?
Karen: Believe the best about someone before we assume the worst. Give them the benefit of the doubt. They mean well, their mouth just often misfires. It helps for us to remember that, although we might not regret our words as often as someone else, we too have an area of our life where we tend to trip up in sin. Having grace helps us to wipe the slate clean in our relationships with others so we can continue to relate without negative baggage from the past.
Sarah: How can young moms train their kids to be careful with their speech?
Karen: By modeling it. By asking forgiveness for our mama mouth when we blow it. And we will blow it! We don’t want our children to think we are perfect and that we never send in what we say. We want them to see a mom who is striving to be Christ like in her speech but who also knows where to go when she blows it. She goes to God and she goes to the person she has offended, even if it is one of her children.
Thank you so much, Karen, for such great advice!
Now, you can enter to win a copy of Keep.It.Shut. Giveaway ends Tuesday. I hope you win! :)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

*Post contains affiliate links to Amazon. I received Keep.It.Shut free to review. All opinions are my own.