Must-Read Parenting Book
The gospel transforms everything including the way we parent. This book is less about what and more about why and, folks, it is a game-changer.
Parenting by Paul Tripp is hands-down the best parenting book I have ever read. And I've read a lot of parenting books, folks. If you are only going to read one book this year read the Bible. But if you are going to read two books then you should absolutely choose this one! And if reading isn't really your thing, good news, you can live stream a conference by Paul Tripp in Sept. (see link at the bottom of this article)
Tripp's insight and wisdom help to clarify and re-frame some of the daily struggles parents face as we seek to raise children who know and love the Lord. I have started several blogs about this book - all of which failed to accurately portray its content so I have decided to simply include several of my favorite excerpts and implore you to read the entire book immediately.
Here's a little taste...
"You need to see parenting as one unending conversation. You see, God loves your child even more than you do and because he loves them he will expose what is wrong with that child again and again so that you have opportunity after opportunity to take yet another step in the process of awareness, conviction, commitment, and change that he has called you to be part of in the life of your child. So each day you look for another opportunity to advance that critical conversation one more step and because you do, you don't consider those moments where correction is needed to be interruptions or hassles, but gifts of grace afforded you by a God who is at work in the hearts and lives of your children."
The above passage has provided a new perspective for me as I approach disobedience or tantrums. Instead of feeling exasperated or inconvenienced by my child's bad behavior I am now able to see the opportunity that has been presented me. I'm not saying I don't ever feel exasperated but now I am also able to ask, "what is this behavior revealing about my child's heart?" so that I can address the cause and not just the effects. And if I don't say everything just right, I can give thanks that I will have MANY chances to speak truth into their lives as the Lord leads me. We live within an ongoing, never-ending conversation about grace. And speaking of that...
"Parents, we all need to have an "everything I do, I do to point my children to the presence and promises of God's grace" way of parenting our children. Every conversation is an opportunity. Pointing them to the beauty of nature is an opportunity, every moment of correction and discipline is an opportunity, every sibling battle is an opportunity, success or failure at school is an opportunity, family worship is an opportunity, birthdays and holidays provide an opportunity, teenage identity angst is an opportunity, bedtime conversations provide an opportunity, discussions after watching something on Netflix provide an opportunity. There will be no want of opportunities to talk to your children about their inescapable need for God's grace. There will be no lack of opportunity for telling the story of how Jesus meets those needs. Because, by God's plan, every good thing, every beautiful thing, every hard thing, every sad thing, and everything to celebrate gives us an opportunity to point to the God who, in grace, rules it all. The questions is: will you see those opportunities in the mundane moments of parenting and capture them again and again and again?"
I think sometimes as parents we aren't sure how or when to schedule in the Big Conversations about life and God. While it is good to have some rhythms and routines for family worship, the above writing captures the natural, ongoing worship in a Christian home. It's not that we have lots of conversations about God and the gospel it's that we never stop talking about God and the gospel. Everything points to Him and it is only natural to speak of Him and think of Him and worship Him throughout our days.
"Every day you are working to give them light - light that illumines the heart and allows them to confess what is there. It's important to understand that your children resist your help because in their blindness they do not think they need it. Sight-giving is an irreplaceable step to lasting change in the lives of your children. You must always ask, 'What right now does God want my child to see that he is not now seeing and how can I help him see it?'"
Do you see what I mean? This is good stuff! And this is only a small portion of the hundreds of lines I highlighted in this book!
You can purchase your copy here. Not in your budget? Check your local library!
Or, for $25 you and your spouse can watch Paul Tripp's Parenting conference from the comfort of your living room! Click here for details.
And lastly, you can enter for a chance to win a free copy of this book by signing up for my mailing list here. I will be giving away a free copy to one lucky subscriber at the end of this week! (If you've already signed up then you are automatically entered to win!)
The unfolding of your words gives light; it imparts understanding to the simple.
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