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5.0 out of 5 starsA Must Read and Share!
Reviewed in the United States on December 1, 2014
I have recommended this book so many times! Too many Christian parenting books are superficial and a waste of paper/ink. The author writes honestly and with enough objectivity to allow a person to step outside their bad childhood and learn. The 1st chapter should be taught to every parent about the balance of love and discipline. I took a whole year to read it because some lessons are pretty difficult to swallow as they push the reader to look at themselves and their motivations. The only criticism, if it is one, I have is that half the people that pick it up aren't emotionally ready to be as introspective as the book requires (and good parenting). Wish more Christian authors wrote like Dr. Allender.
Once again, Dan Allender teaches from the experiences of his own mistakes, creating a sense that he is walking alongside us, sharing our journey with us, instead of talking down to us, instead of giving us cliches and platitudes or simplistic formula's. Because he combines God's Word with real life experiences and illustrations it is easy to read and to accept the invitation to learn from our children so we can grow closer to God.
He focuses on two key questions our children our asking - and how those questions are our own questions that need to be answered by our heavenly Father.... “Am I loved?” and “Can I get my own way?”
Here is one quote from his book, summing up a key theme he is inviting us to receive, allowing our children to lead us to God's throne of amazing grace:
Every child, by asking the two core questions, is offering an astounding invitation: “Will you love me and be strong? Will you provide a world where for a few, brief years I can experiment with passion and play and know that I can fail without losing your delight and joy?”
If we learn to listen to our children, we will find a precious truth. What they deeply crave is the same core desire we find in our own hearts. As we listen, we will learn to ask the same questions of the God who has made us and called us to be parents. We will ask him if he will still delight in us if we take great risks, discard some venerated rules, and sometimes fail miserably in our efforts to raise our children well. And we’ll learn to listen to his answer to us: “Yes, you are loved more than you can fathom” and “No, you can’t have your own way. But as you pursue my way, you will find the deepest satisfaction your heart can ever know.”
3.0 out of 5 starsA helpful big picture on the long term goal of parenting for Christians
Reviewed in the United States on January 22, 2018
I 'listened' to the book on the CD's. Overall a helpful book. The book is not as practical as I was hoping. However, the author does sketch out a great perspective on the larger point of parenting from a Christian perspective. The book does help remind me that I have a lot to learn about God's love. one of my favorite parts of the book is when he discusses parenting and failure, very counterintuitive and he does a great way of showing how that counterintuitive failure idea connects with the love of God. It was a little hard to listen to because there are no chapters. Not sure if the book/print version has chapters.
4.0 out of 5 starsGood information but repetative!
Reviewed in the United States on October 2, 2013
My wife and I read this book for one of our Masters classes, and it has some really great principles! The author seems to have dove deep into the wisdom he has to try and give people a solid way to relate to their children in foundational ways. The only negative thing I would say about the book is that it was too repetitive for us... it seemed like every chapter, at some point, we stopped reading and asked "hasn't he said this already!?" I'm sure the repetitive nature is for a reason and some things definitely have to be read multiple times before they sink in, so I would still recommend this book to anyone who is seeking a better foundation for raising kids!
5.0 out of 5 starsAn insightful look into the Father's heart
Reviewed in the United States on July 23, 2016
Wow - I'm finding this book challenging me in my walk with Jesus, let alone my parenting!
Allender's clarity as he boils down complex spiritual and psychological concepts into usable practices for everyone has been a huge blessing, and challenged me both as a child of God myself and as a dad.
Note: This is emphatically NOT a how-to book, in the sense that Allender specifically calls us not to boil down our kids' development, and the role we play in that, into formulas. Rather, he calls us to wisdom that takes into account the unique voice of each of our children.
All I can say is, "Wow." His first sentence begins and a conscious thread is continued until the last page. This sounds vexing, but every single sentence is positively an absolute jewel. Basically, he tells you how to listen and learn from your kids so you can teach them. It's Zen meets the Horse Whisperer for parenting. Some parenting techniques stifle a close relationship between parent/child because the parent must be a leader in the home. This isn't necessarily bad. It's just how it is. However, the techniques Allendar suggests, narrows this gap, bringing you closer to your child as you learn to listen to him.
Our sons are 36 and 40 and this book STILL impacted me strongly! Dan Allender is brutally honest in exposing his own failings (all of which he both acknowledges and corrects) so that we are able to see our own in the process. LISTENING to our children and really hearing them is key to understanding them before our emotions ruin what could be missed opportunities to bond. I had to hunt for copies of this book because of its copyright date but purchased several to give as gifts to new parents! It's THAT good!