Archive | Book Reviews

Praying For Your Husband

Praying For Your Husband - Parenting Like Hannah

Praying for Your Husband from Head to Toe by Sharon Jaynes

Have you ever listened to various groups of people talk? Listen to a group of old people for very long and inevitably you start hearing conversations about various physical ailments. Men? It doesn’t take long for the talk to become sports oriented. Women? Well if they are married, once they finish discussing the kids and/or grandkids, often the talk turns to their husbands. And very often the talk is not at all positive. Complaints, derisive humor, anger and disdain often pepper these conversations.

Surely, that’s not what God intended for our conversations about our marriages to become? Yet, women believe they have a right to criticize and complain. And honestly, many of them are at least partially right. Their husbands are not at all acting the way God intended for husbands to act. Yet even when that is true, I don’t think the Bible condones our constant complaining and whining about our husbands.

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Introducing Your Teen to the Realities of a World They May Not Know

Introducing Your Teens to the Reality of a World They May Not Know - Parenting Like Hannah

Miss Brenda and the Love Ladies by Brenda Spahn

In Atlanta, it’s really easy to shield yourself and your children from poverty. Everything we need is often within a few blocks of our lovely, manicured middle class (and up) neighborhoods. Our churches are filled with people who may have terrible trauma in their pasts and current problems that would make us weep, but they usually put on a smile and tell everyone they are fine. We may participate in short term mission projects and trips, but they usually involve swooping into an area to help and then swooping out without really getting to know the people and what their lives are normally like.

When we insulate ourselves and our children from the realities of a broken world, we miss out on the ability to fully love and serve those around us. It becomes easy to make assumptions about what people “should do” or “know how” to do. We may even refuse to serve entire groups of people because they “deserved” what happened to them.

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Loss, Change, and the Christian Mom

Loss, Change, and the Christian Mom - Parenting Like Hannah

Pilgrimage: My Journey to a Deeper Faith in the Land Where Jesus Walked by Lynn Austin

Being a mother is one of the most wonderful blessings God can give. The joy, love and fulfillment it provides us is so special, we can’t really express it adequately. Yet motherhood can also be demanding, frustrating, confusing, exhausting and even heart-breaking.

God has called us to parent our children proactively towards Him. We are to spend our days training our children and teaching them God’s commands, principles and ways. Yet, there are days when we don’t have the energy to pray ourselves.  There are days when our personal faith feels shaky. Even if your faith is strong, you may question God’s plans for you or if He even has any.

The times when we are faced with the deaths of close loved ones, illnesses of ourselves or our families, loss of income or other unwanted circumstances can make our questions even more urgent. As a mom about to have an empty nest in a few months, I also understand those feelings I had as my kindergartener went to class the first day will be intensified greatly when she moves across the country to attend college. You may even be experiencing the pain of having a child who is struggling through dangerous waters, where you feel you have no way to help him.

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Re-Thinking David and Goliath

Rethinking David and Goliath - Parenting Like Hannah

David and Goliath by Malcolm Gladwell

Recently, I was privileged to hear Malcolm Gladwell speak about his new book, David and Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling Giants. (I admit, everyone in the audience got a free copy of the book after his speech, but it doesn’t change my opinion of the book!) Now, I have heard the story of David and Goliath so many times, I feel like I may know them personally. Mr. Gladwell shared some insight into the story though, I had never heard before.

After doing some extensive research into battle tactics and weaponry of the time and the potential health issues of Goliath, Mr. Gladwell came to an interesting conclusion. David wasn’t as much of an underdog as we portray him, but that does not lessen God’s role in the story or our dependence on God. Rather it demonstrates how God can equip us to slay our “giants” by giving us talents and opportunities that make these supposed giants not so giant after all.

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Creative Dating as Parents

Creative Dating as Parents - Parenting Like Hannah

Little Book of Great Dates by Greg and Erin Smalley

Do you remember dating your spouse? If you were like us, there was some attempt to be creative and interesting on dates. After all, we were trying to impress each other. Fast forward a few years and with children, you are lucky if you even have a date night. When you do, who has the energy to be creative? So, most of us end up eating out and talking about the kids and what needs to be repaired or falling asleep in a movie theater.

It doesn’t have to be that way. Greg and Erin Smalley have written a great little book, Little Book of Great Dates: 52 Creative Ideas to Make Your Marriage Fun. The book contains ideas for fifty-two different dates you can have with your spouse.

The set-up is a little unique compared to similar books. Each date has a theme, but most include several suggestions for where to have the date. My favorites were the ones that encouraged the couple to step out of their comfort zones during their time together. They even suggested some specific activities and one-time classes if you have trouble thinking of ideas within a category. (They even have ideas for “at home – no money” dates).

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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)