Archive | Book Reviews

What If Christian Marriages Are Different?

What If Christian Marriage Are Different


Shaunti Feldhahn is one of my favorite authors dealing with men, women and marriage. What I appreciate about her books is that she doesn’t just give her opinion and back it up with an example from her life. Ms. Feldhahn apparently does a lot of research to make sure her assumptions are correct.

I couldn’t wait to get my hands on her latest effort The Good News About Marriage. With her co-author Tally Whitehead, she went back and looked at the studies  and “facts”which are constantly cited in newspapers, magazines and even sermons. What she found was very exciting.

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When Your Kids Make Mistakes

When Kids Make Mistakes - Parenting Like Hannah

Perhaps the hardest thing to accept as a parent is that you will never be the perfect parent and your kids won’t be perfect either. And that’s okay. Sometimes the mistakes we or our children make are just that – silly little mistakes that turn into family stories and legends. At other times, the mistakes actually involve sin and hearts and lives can be broken.

Kathi Lipp was a mom who had children who made some choices that would make any Christian mother cringe. At first she was embarrassed, but quickly realized she was not the only mother who had done the best she could do to dedicate her children to God only to have them make choices that pulled them away from God. She ultimately decided to write the book I Need Some Help Here!: Hope for When Your Kids Don’t Go according to Plan to help other mothers.

The biggest gift Lipp’s book gives moms is the reassurance that they are not alone. Many times it feels safer to present our “perfect” families to our church “family”. Unfortunately, it ends up isolating us from the people who can give us the most support when our children are struggling. I hope Lipp’s book encourages moms to open up to other Christian moms when their kids are making bad choices. The prayers and support from our Christian brothers and sisters can often help.

Within her efforts to encourage, Lipp breaks her advice up into nine areas where our children can struggle. Some involve when our child decides to walk away from God, but a lot of her advice is about children who are just struggling. She covers everything from being different to being ill to being overwhelmed.

Within each chapter, Lipp shares the story of one or more mothers and children who have struggled with the particular issue. The stories she shares are respectful, yet detailed enough to be helpful. She then gives four or five practical things a mother can do when she finds her child (and herself) in the particular situation. Some of her suggestions are what you would expect -prayer, scripture, getting outside help. She also gives reminders of godly principles and a practical tip or two. Lipp is also a strong believer in sharing what “not to do” as much as what “to do” in a given situation.

While I agree that no matter how well we parent, bad things happen and our children can and will still make bad choices. I do differ from her in that I strongly believe there are proactive things you can do to lessen the chances your child will make certain poor choices or end up in certain situations. Her book is more from the “horse is out of the barn” so forgive yourself and do what you can to improve the situation line of thinking. Because of that, I think it is helpful for parents whose children are already in bad situations, but will not help you parent your child away from anything proactively.

If your child is struggling with sin or just from living in a fallen world, I think you will find comfort in this book. You may even discover a few practical suggestions to help you on your journey. Ultimately though, this book can only be the first step in helping you pick yourself up, dust yourself off and find the help you need from God and other Christians.

If your children aren’t struggling at the moment, I think the most important lesson from this book is that many parents are hurting badly. Keep your eyes and ears open for them. Reach out to them and offer them a sympathetic ear. Pray with them. Share this book or its ideas. Mainly, reflect God’s love to them, because ultimately that’s what we all need the most.


This book was provided to me for free in exchange for my honest review.

Helping Your Kids Stand Strong Against Bullies and Mean Girls

Helping Your Kids Stand Strong Against Bullies and Mean Girls - Parenting Like HannahRarely a week goes by without hearing about some teen who committed suicide or a terrible act of violence because of bullying. Bullying isn’t new. In fact, I would imagine everyone reading this was teased or bullied to the point of tears at some point in their life.

Parents have struggled for years to find ways to help their children deal with the inevitable feelings of sadness, fear or worry that often result from the behavior of bullies. You probably heard “They are just jealous.”, “Ignore her” or “Stand up to him” from your own parents.

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New Resource for Teaching Kids About Money

New Resource for Teaching Kids About Money - Parenting Like HannahRarely do I recommend a resource after I have given its initial review. A new resource is released tomorrow I believe is so important, I am going to break my unwritten rule. One of the biggest sources of confusion for many Christians and of conflict in many marriages is the subject of money. Oh, God gives us pretty clear guidelines, but knowing how to put them into practice can be tough if not almost impossible for many.

Whether you constantly struggle with debt and finances or feel you have a good, godly grasp on the subject, you may wonder how to pass on skills for handling money, that will not only prevent your children from the stress of debt, but teach them how to use their money in godly ways. Smart Money Smart Kids is written by Dave Ramsey and his adult daughter Rachel Cruze. The book does one of the best jobs I have seen of not only explaining what money skills you need to teach your children, but exactly how to do it.

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Answering Kids’ Tough Questions About the Bible

Answering Kids' Tough Questions About the Bible - Parenting Like Hannah

100 Tough Questions about God and the Bible by Stephen M. Miller

Kids are great with questions. They can ask “Why?” at the end of even the most thought-out response. Many parents are afraid of studying the Bible with their children – mainly because of the questions their kids may ask. Don’t worry though. You don’t have to know all of the answers. It is perfectly acceptable to tell a child the two of you need to do a little research on the subject and find the answer to that great question together.

Of course, your next question to me is “Where do I go for the answers?” Unless you are a very strong Christian who has studied the Bible for years, I would avoid Google and Wikipedia at all costs. For every grounded Christian who writes something there are multiple agnostics, atheists and very confused people who write something that is so far from the Biblical truth as to be scary.

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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)