Archive | Book Reviews

Encouraging Kids to Love Everybody Always

Encouraging Kids to Love Everybody Always - Parenting Like HannahBullying and teasing have been around probably as long as there have been kids. So have cliques, labels and popularity. It almost seems that being unkind and unloving has been accepted as part of growing up in a fallen world. Yet, God has called Christian young people to something higher. To love those their peers tell them are unloveable. To be kind and loving to those who are considered outsiders by their friends.

Enter Bob Goff. Some of you may be familiar with this energetic author with a joyful gleam in his eye. His first book, Love Does was a best seller. Fans have waited for years for him to write a second book. The wait is almost over. Goff’s next book Everybody, Always will be released in April. I was able to get a sneak peek at the first five chapters.

Normally, I don’t agree to review a book unless I am given the entire volume. It really isn’t fair to the author, because any concerns I may have about the first few chapters may have been addressed in the remainder of the book. I made an exception for Goff’s book, because I am so familiar with his work – both in writing and in ministry.

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The Hopeful Family

The Hopeful Family - Parenting Like HannahI don’t know about you, but if I watch a news channel for very long, I begin losing hope for the future. It’s easy to believe the world is getting worse and there is little if anything we can do to stop it. If you are a student of history, you know that isn’t the case, but even knowing the world has had periods of time equally bad or worse is still of little comfort.

The danger for Christian parents is losing hope for the future of our children and generations of our family yet to be born. If we lose hope, why bother to put the extra effort into raising kids who will be active Christians, living their faith in this Fallen world? Yet, the message of God’s Plan, of Jesus and of the Gospel message is hope. So how do we remain hopeful raising our kids to be Christians in an openly Fallen world?

I was interested when offered the chance to review the book God of Tomorrow by Caleb Kaltenbach. Kaltenbach has a rather unique background for a Christian author. At some point in his life, both of his parents came out as homosexuals. Caleb had to find a way to love them, while still teaching them what God wanted from them and for them. (Ultimately, both of his birth parents converted to Christianity.)

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What Bible Should Your Kids Own?

What Bible Should Your Kids Own? - Parenting Like Hannah



One of the most frequent questions I hear is, “What Bible should I give my kids?”. It’s a great question, because giving your children the wrong Bible can discourage them from wanting to read it independently. Or it can be printed in such a way that perhaps it doesn’t ground your kids as well in scripture as other Bibles might.

There are three factors you need to consider when buying a Bible for a child (or anyone really):

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When Christian Moms Need to Laugh

When Christian Moms Need to Laugh - Parenting Like HannahSometimes, the only thing you can do while parenting is laugh. Being able to see the silly side of what is happening can lessen stress and make a bad day a little easier. I’m always looking for books that will help moms see the humorous side of life – preferably while also encouraging them.

I was interested when offered the chance to review Why I Hate Green Beans by Lincee Ray. The title caught my eye, although personally I would have substituted Brussels sprouts! Her goal is to use humor to encourage others to accept their imperfections. She does so by sharing the misadventures of her own life – showing one can find humor in the most unlikely of situations.

The book is published by a group known for it’s Christian authors and books. Although there are some mentions of God and faith within many of the stories, I wouldn’t say this is the sort of Christian book where one comes away with a better understanding of God or what He wants from us. Don’t get me wrong. It’s not promoting anything ungodly. It’s just that the stories are distracting enough for me to say this is a book you read for enjoyment, not to necessarily learn or grow from it.

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Beautiful New Children’s Christian Book

Beautiful New Children's Christian Book - Parenting Like HannahMost children’s books are perfectly lovely and have stories that are interesting, fun or educational. I am always looking for children’s books though, that have that extra dynamic of building faith in God or encouraging godly hearts and behaviors. A few years ago, the early children’s Christian books just didn’t have the same quality standards as secular children’s publishing.

That has changed with the team of Paul Turner and David Catrow. I was excited when offered the opportunity to review their newest book, When God Made Light. They previously teamed up for the picture book When God Made You. The books have a very similar feel and look to them. The illustrations are absolutely beautiful. In fact, Catrow is becoming one of my favorite illustrators.

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Fix these words of mine in your hearts and minds; tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Teach them to your children, talking about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. (Deuteronomy 11:18-19 NIV)