Wednesday, August 19, 2009

How to Raise A Modern-Day Joseph - A Review

By Linda Massey Weddle

From the back of the book:
As parents, we strive to help our kids grow into their full potential.

We help them with their homework, enroll them in activities, and invest for their college education. But while we may plan for their success, we can overlook a vital part of their personal development: nurturing and encouraging a solid foundation of faith.

We can easily assume our children are growing spiritually in church youth groups and programs, but the Bible calls us to guide them in their relationship with Jesus.

The life of Joseph offers parents a biblical standard for building children of character. Drawing from his story, this book will help you do just that. Inside, you’ll find a unique guide for creating a personalized plan for your child’s spiritual growth, from preschool through high school.

The result: Children and teenagers who know, love, and serve the Lord.

So invest in their spiritual development. And create a legacy of faith that will last a lifetime.

Author Bio: Linda Massey Weddle is a gifted teacher, speaker, and prolific writer. A children’s author and regular contributor to publications including Women’s Day and Christian Parenting Today, she has published twelve books and more than 2,500 articles, stories, devotionals, and radio scripts. Linda also develops Bible-based curriculum for young people and has been involved in children’s and youth ministry for the past forty years. She has two grown children and six grandchildren and resides in suburban Chicago.

From me:
When I found out I was going to be a parent for the first time...I started reading. I read and I read and I read. First about what to expect during pregnancy and how to have a healthy one. Then about what I needed for my newborn. Then how to care for them. Then as I began to crave proper sleep, how to get them to sleep. As Will became a toddler I focused on what to feed him and then discipline. Those first two years, I was a sponge and I soaked up everything I could. I'll be honest with you, I burnt myself out. Don't get me wrong...I'm still reading. I did buy a couple books recently about raising a gifted child...which basically told me that all children are different and to listen to them, feed their interests and keep them challenged. (Really? That's all I have to do? I hadn't already thought of that. Thanks) And I've been scouring the Internet and blogs regarding how I can better help Finleigh maybe start to talk sometime soon, or help keep Willem engaged in school, or help Nate with his slight lisp. I've found a few insights here and there, but nothing earth shattering.

So here I am, reviewing a parenting book. A genre that I've burnt myself out on. A book that seeks to help you raise children with a strong faith in God. A faith like Joseph in the Old Testament. An irony that's not lost on me since Joseph came from a pretty messed up background. A really messed up background even.

This book actually takes another book, Raising a Modern-Day Joseph by Larry Fowler (which I haven't read) and makes it practical. It is an Awana resource, so there there is a lot of focus on church and its role in a child's life, though even more on the parent's role in their children's spiritual education. The author gives a lot of practical ideas of how you can try to instill a lasting faith in your children. Each age group has a different aspect of God to focus on. There are checklists, bible verse suggestions, family activities, common questions that the age group asks and goals. It is a very practical book. Almost more of a resource book to refer to than one you would simply sit down and read.

Seems to me that it all comes down to consistency. Make sure your life reflects the beliefs you claim to have (whatever they are). Be consistent in how you parent your kids. Make learning fun for them without watering down the message you want to convey...whether at church or at home.

Honestly, I'm not sure that I'll use it much myself. But, if you're looking for specific, practical advice, good bible verses and ways to partner with your church in raising your kids...this book is for you.

As for me, I'm going to give parenting books a rest for a while and stick with my fictional reads.

This book was provided to me for an impartial review

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