Best parenting book I’ve read this year

Sent on a mission to pad up the parenting and children’s books in my church library, I found this list from a familiar church that I like and respect.

So I ordered two books from the list, and have just finished this first one. It spoke so clearly to me that I felt like getting it for every Christian parent I know.

It is such a thin book, but it sure packs a punch.  There are hard hitting truths on every page, and each chapter succinctly gets its theologically rigourous yet practical points across. 

There’s a very helpful section with reflection questions at the end of each chapter, which makes this perfect for a small group of parents to use in a discussion. Personally, I took out a small journal and started penning important parts of the book down, and my answers to some of the more pertinent questions.

One of the points that leaped out at me, was that parents should work on understanding and changing the child’s heart, rather than just seeking methods to alter behaviour.  Most books I’ve read mention how important it is to address the behaviour, instead of say, labelling the child as naughty.  Whilst that has its point, I guess it misses the deeper aspect of the soul, or the heart of a child.

I came across this very helpful blurb from the book’s publisher, and since I can’t say it better, I’ve included it here:

Numerous books set out to help Christian parents in the challenging mission of raising their children well-so what’s different about this one? Well, the answer’s in the title! It’s not about how the gospel fits into Christian family life, but how family life should fit into the gospel-God’s greatest purpose for this universe, achieved in Christ.

Many books aim to raise up competent, balanced parents and well-trained, well-rounded children. But Tim Chester and Ed Moll focus on families growing God-knowing, Christ-confessing, grace-receiving, servant-hearted, mission-minded believers-adults and children together.

In twelve concise chapters, Gospel-Centred Family takes us through the major Bible principles for family life, challenging us to give up our ‘respectable’ middle-class idols, and to become the distinctively different people that God, through His gospel, calls us to be.

I also liked Paul Tripp’s (Author of Shepherding a Child’s Heart – which I read but found more relevant to parents of slightly older children) comment on the book:

(The author) shows what it means to rest in grace as parents, to respond with grace to our children and to teach them to hope in grace themselves. This book is a must read for parents. It brims with encouraging grace and practical direction on every page.

My copy is going into the church library soon, but if you’re looking for a good parenting book, this is definitely worth buying and passing around. I got mine here.

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  1 comment for “Best parenting book I’ve read this year

  1. May 17, 2013 at 10:10 am

    looks like a good book.

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