Saturday, May 23, 2009

Sacred Parenting by Gary Thomas

When my sweet daughter advanced to the developmental period known as the terrible two's, I began experiencing a lot of difficulty in parenting her. Surprise! I repeatedly asked the Lord (with some anger in my tone), "How do I make her stop this?!" Each time, the Lord lovingly responded that her behavior would change whenever I corrected my own. After this scenario played itself out several times in one day, I threw my hands into the air, turned my face to the sky and cried, "Whyyyy, God? Why is it always me?" And at that moment, the Lord showed me that He intended to use my daughter to make me more like Himself.

Yes, it's just like Proverbs says, "As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. (Proverbs 27:17)" Or, in this case, a child will sharpen his/her parent. And, just like Romans 8:28 says, "We know that all things work together for the good of those who love Him and are called according to His purpose." All things, including parenting.

God is so good to us. He works it out that while we (hopefully) make disciples of our children, He simultaneously makes us into better disciples.

So, the sum of this book? "The Lord inends to use your children as a sanctifying force in your life." Thomas breaks this idea down into 13 chapters and an epilogue. While I agree with the author's point, I'm surprised that he can spend a whopping 13 chapters on it. I suppose that's why he's a writer, and I'm not. His gift for verbosity.

However, if you struggle with your child's behavior and you've never heard this message before, I highly recommend this gentle book.