Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Scraps of Soul, Live!

If you like reading Scraps of Soul, perhaps you'd like to hear
my thoughts in person? 

As my kids go off to school in September, I'm finally able to answer God's call and the desire of my heart to encourage other women and young mothers as they seek to live lives of...

 Imperfectionism: pursuing love and excellence without expecting perfection from ourselves or others! 

If you or someone you know has a group looking for fun and relevant speakers, send them my way. Below is a synopsis of my favorite topics.

Put Away Perfect:
Replacing Perfectionist Thinking with God’s Perfect Will
This talk is designed to help women live with realistic expectations of themselves and their relationships, by changing the way they think. (Romans 12:2) Perfectionism is a very common root of anxiety, depression and dissatisfaction, but it doesn’t always manifest itself in the way we expect: in a high achieving “perfect” body and a Martha Stewart home. Perfectionism is actually a way of thinking that can also cause procrastination and the destroy our ability to take risks and be creative. Having the skills to recognize when you are thinking like a perfectionist can give you more freedom and joy. I focus on perfectionism in our mothering, friendships and even our faith. This is a great topic for both seekers and mature believers.

All My Friends Have Issues:
Real Thoughts on Real Friendships with Real Women
Based in part on my blog of same name, this is a great topic to tie in this year's MOPS International theme on Taking the Plunge: Risk. Real. Relationships. In it I talk about the "enemies" of authentic friendships (competition and comparison, perfectionism, unwillingness to be vulnerable), and "friends" of authentic friendships (honesty, mutual encouragement, and the willingness to learn from one another's differences).

What Can Post Partum Depression Do for You?
Having experienced PPD personally and found that God used this experience to profoundly change the way I saw life and His love for humanity, I weave facts about risk factors and symptoms of depression and anxiety with my own story. Other groups have found this talk relevant for a number of their women, as it helps them know how to help friends with this experience, as well as themselves. I also speak about the concept that negative emotions like fear and frustration don't disqualify us from a life of faith with God. This message is also filled with humor about the conflicting emotions we experience as women; it is ultimately a message filled with hope. Wanna know what I think the Bible means when it calls women the weaker sex? Book me to find out!

Mary Vs. Martha: Choosing the Better Part
My unique take on the Mary/Martha story examines the strengths of both these women's personality types. Leaning in the Martha direction myself, I hate the simplistic interpretation of this story: work=bad and sitting at Jesus feet=good. The essence of this story, from my perspective, is that Martha saw a “should” where Mary saw a choice, and, as Jesus said, Mary chose the better part. In order to live a life of joy and freedom, without bitterness, we have to learn to judge situations rightly and know when to work and when to rest and refuel. This talk is informed by the book "Boundaries" by Cloud and Townsend, which I recently taught in a six-week course for MOPS moms at Mariners Church in Irvine.

An Amateur Woman:
Making a Life instead of Just a Living
When God called me out of the working world, I found it first devastating and then ultimately liberating. I also found that it was not permanent. In the last six years of being an at-home mom, which I refer to as my Amateur Era, I've discovered that the definitions of amateur, (1) one who pursues an interest for love, and (2) an unskilled person, both apply to me as a woman, wife, mother, leader, and follower of God. An Amateur Woman accepts not her unskilled status! But instead, pursues her passions, dreams and God given talents because she both loves others and is deeply loved by God. This is a message of hope and encouragement to women of all ages, but especially to young moms who feel they've lost their identity when they had babies.

I have been involved in the MOPS group at Mariners Church in Irvine, CA  for eight years, for the last two as the Coordinator of our Friday group. I am now serving as liaison between our Women’s Ministry and our two MOPS groups, which meet weekly and serve over 200 women, as well serving as a Bible teacher and shepherd to our steering teams.

I love the unique opportunity MOPS has to meet the needs of all kinds of women in all stages of their faith in our communities. At Mariners, we find moms come to us because we know they need something -- friends? wisdom? sanity? – and find that what they truly need is the love of God in their lives.

As a speaker, my goal is be relevant, grace-extending and challenging. And I promise, I can make your ladies laugh. I believe we all learn better when we're laughing.

A former magazine editor and current blogger, I am the at-home mother of two daughters (kindergarten and third grade) and have been married to my college sweetheart for 13 years. I am also a quilter, reader, fledgling surfer, renegade gardener, passionate friend, and baker of ambitious but flawed birthday cakes.

Amanda Anderson
Speaker, Blogger, MOPS Leader


  1. I LOVE this Amanda! I want to hear every talk! I'm passing this info on and please tell me when you have your next booking since our plan to come see you last time failed! God will continue to use you in amazing ways...

    Let me know if you ever want to "guest post" on the Throne of Grace blog! :)


  2. Amanda, this is awesome! I sent this to a good friend at my church who is in charge of speakers at Rancho Bernardo Pres MOPS (which I'm not a part of but have several good friends there). I will be joining a new MOPS and after I meet them I'll see if they need any speakers too! Love ya! Sonja

  3. GREAT MOPS SPEAKER! Funny and real...hit home with all of us mommy's wanting to be perfect but not able to meet the standards we set for ourselves. Thank you Amanda!