In my effort to "keep up" with latest and greatest in Christian parenting books, I choose to read Craig Julia's Faith and the Modern Family. I've been a fan of Craig's for years. I find his writing to be like his presentation style; light and humorous, and yet very impactful. This book did not disappoint in any of those categories.
What I liked
I liked the four different parts this book is broken up into. The first part deals with the busyness most, if not all, families feel. Craig does a great job explaining why that is and what to do about it. The second part deals with kids and their behavior. Craig encourages parents (and teachers) the importance of modeling the behavior you want, not react (and by that he means over-react) to bad behavior. Part 3 deals with the issue of "screen time". Here, Craig discusses the reality of connectivity along with its dangers. I the final part of the book Craig looks at the family and their future. He encourages all families to have a plan and a mission; while providing a road map to get there.
What I didn't like
This is more of a personal preference, than a true critique. I would've liked Craig to stick with one Bible translation throughout the book. Jumping back and forth to different translations isn't helpful in my opinion. I also would have also liked a little more Scripture as well. Beyond that, I found the book helpful, fun to read, and encouraging.
Parents this book is worth your time. It will give biblical, as well as practical, advice on how to raise kids in our modern world. I would encourage parents to get a copy, read it, and maybe even study it together.
Here is a teaser to a few of my favorite quotes from the book:
"It's a bit unfair in life that we have ample time to practice just about everything we do except parenting." pg. 13
"All children push boundaries. If they had a job at their age, they would be paid to push the boundaries." pg. 31
"... the biggest obstacle facing today's modern family is, I would tell you 'too many choices'." pg. 39
"What matters not how fast you move but the direction you move." pg. 74
"... we need to model the behavior for your children that we want to see in our children." pg. 81 - 82
"... how do we learn to be better parents? By reading what God's word has to say, by reading parenting books written by experts in the field, by talking to other parents, and by having open and honest communication with our kids." pg. 97
"Respond but don't react." pg. 117
"Giving you children access to something they are not ready for may not be the best choice. Social media sites can be great if used respectfully and responsibly." pg. 147
"Parents, we must provide our children with what hey need to navigate their modern world in a healthy way." pg. 158
"As a parent, it's often easier to be demanding rate that discerning." pg. 169
"One of the most important efforts we as parents can make is to keep communication open, and keep it open about uncomfortable topics." pg. 174
"If you have no plan, you have no direction." pg. 192
"The parent you are today is not the parent you can be tomorrow." pg. 198
"Be persistent and you will be productive ..." pg. 212
"Repetition creates habits and habits create culture." pg. 226