Friday, March 11, 2011

Confident Parenting

Confident Parenting, Jim Burns

This book has been on my 'to read' list for about 2 years now, I started it once or twice and never finished it - very frustrating. In an effort to clear all parenting books off my shelf for a while, I have finally bunkered down and read it.

It's a useful book with good ideas. Really it's an introduction and it does well at raising issues, and starting to solve them. Those who want specific ideas of what to do next might want to read further. However, when thinking about the main things that affect parents, it's a good tool.

Burns' basic idea is that you need a plan to parent, if you just go at it day to day, you are unlikely to define, let alone attain, any goals for your children.
If our goal is to raise responsible adults (not simply make our kids happy), it is very important that we develop a plan and purpose to follow... Start thinking about what you want your children to be like when they you grow up... What I'm talking about is a parenting plan that will help develop character, integrity, faith, responsibility, discipline, a servant's heart, moral discernment, and so many of the other most important inner qualities of a healthy soul. (p25)

Then he deals with some major challenges for parents:
  • overcoming negative family patterns - choosing to change the bad patterns of the past
  • recognising our overcrowded lives and choosing to replenish them instead
  • communicating with affection, warmth and encouragement (this sounded very familiar, until I realised he is also the author of this book)
  • balancing grace and discipline in the home
  • taking responsibility for spiritual growth in the home
  • leaving a legacy for your children (a spiritual legacy, not financial!)

I've read so many parenting books over the last few years, I have to say they are all starting to sound the same - however, this is yet another one that is good.

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