“Give me some tips on parenting” is not something I’d ask of many. I would of Lehman. I find it nearly impossible to read a book on parenting if I don’t know the author’s family. I do know Lehman’s. That’s why I found it impossible not to read this book. It reads as smoothly and pastorally as if he were your mentor across the coffee table, pouring into your life. Think of this practical and biblical book as strong morning coffee for the long day of parenting—with extra shots of Scripture.
Dave Hosaflook, Missionary to Albania
John doesn’t merely talk the talk—he walks the walk. This book isn’t full of common-sense parenting, because biblical parenting is neither common nor natural. It demands supernatural wisdom and power.
Jeremy McMorris, From the Foreword
(Excerpt from an email to the author)
I had the opportunity to read your book on the flight home. Initially I thought that this would be a good book to give to the parents of the Jr. High students but after reading it, it became apparent (no pun) that this would be an excellent book for all ages of parents. You have truly authored an awesome book that can be used in so many ministries. My desire is to get the book into the hands of people that can use it to make a difference in their lives, families and communities. I probably will be getting more books soon.
Bob Oldright, WA
In 2013, John Lehman wrote something of a “sleeper” of a book on parenting. I call it a “sleeper” because it did not get the notoriety of some other books on parenting. That is a shame because it is very helpful, especially for beginning parents or older parents who want a short “check up” on how they are doing.
Parenting books can fall into different categories. Some teach everything on the Christian life and bring it to bear on the subject of parenting. Such books seek to keep the reader from legalism or an unhealthy focus on parenting as if it were separate from the Christian life. Some books major in stories and examples from the authors own experience as if to say, “This is how we did it, now go and do it likewise!”. Others are studies of all the biblical material on parenting and become a bit overwhelming.
John is a pastor and a National Association of Nouthetic Counselors (NANC) trained biblical counselor living in South Carolina. Like all good, biblical counselors he is biblical, clear, straightforward, sensitive to the human condition and honest. John has confidence in the Word of God to equip the people of God to serve their Lord in all areas, parenting included.
This book is very helpful, especially for beginning parents or older parents who want a short “check up” on how they are doing.
Let me detail the chapters for you.
CHAPTER 1–NOW WHAT…DO WE DO TO BEGIN? (Getting ready to become a mom or dad.) This book strikes me as aimed at the many in our churches who are professing Christians but have little or no training in parenting other than growing up AND they have not really studied biblical parenting. So this book begins at the beginning!
CHAPTER 2–NOW WHAT…DO I WANT MY CHILD TO BE LIKE WHEN HE/SHE GROWS UP? (Preparing an overarching goal for your child.) Parents ought to be aiming at something. It is certainly true that he who aims at nothing will surely achieve it! What should be our goals in parenting the children God gives us. How do we determine these goals?
CHAPTER 3–NOW WHAT…DOES OBEDIENCE MEAN? (Demonstrating what it means to live in submission to the One, True God) Western civilization is awash with millions of children who were little loved and less disciplined. This is a very fine explanation of how to train a child to be an obedient child. If you don’t like disciplining your 5 year old, you won’t like the 15 year old that later comes forth.
CHAPTER 4–NOW WHAT…DO I DO IF MY CHILD DISOBEYS? (Facing the consequences God has directed when there is disobedience.) The bookend to the previous chapter. Discipline is not simply beating a child or giving it the “silent treatment” but faithfully applying biblical means of discipline for disobedience or dishonoring. Parents are not to discipline for ignorance or immaturity but disobedience or dishonoring their parents.
CHAPTER 5–NOW WHAT…SHOULD A PARENT REALLY LOOK LIKE? (Cultivating a godly parental model that emphasizes practical godliness.) Parents train 24-7-365. The model of the kind of man or woman, Christian or hypocrite, etc. goes a long way to determining what mental model your child will have of a true man or woman of God. This chapter addresses the kind of person you are becoming by the grace of God.
CHAPTER 6–NOW WHAT…ARE THE STAGES IN CHILD-READING? (Navigating wisely through the ages and stages that lead to adulthood.) A parent with common sense would not expect their 5 year old, 10 year old, or 15 year old to lift the same weight, know the same math or have digested all the rules of the home. This chapter teach the basics of adapting your training to the age and comprehension of your child and what to expect along the way.
POSTSCRIPT–Off to a bad start? Don’t give up!
STUDY GUIDE–Great questions to discuss as husband and wife or for a small group to discuss together.
- May I suggest that you give this book to young “mothers to be” at baby showers and young “fathers to be” as a “friendship gift” as fatherhood approaches.
- May I suggest you give it to parents just coming to Christ to help them play “catch up” with their responsibilities as Christian parents.
- May I suggest you read and discuss it in your small groups?
- May I suggest you add it to your list of important parenting books along with… Tedd Tripp, SHEPHERDING A CHILD’S HEART, Edith Schaeffer, WHAT IS A FAMILY ?, and Jerry Bridges, THE BOOKENDS OF THE CHRISTIAN LIFE