Welcome to the Give Them Grace Book Club! Starting today, and every Friday through July 17, we're going to be sharing reflections from the book Give Them Grace, chapter by chapter.
We invite you to leave comments on this post, link up your reflection on the chapter, and join us in the Family Discipleship Facebook Group to further interact with other parents.
Need a copy of the book? You can get Give Them Grace in paperback or kindle at Amazon.
Obedience vs Heart-Change
Allow me to say this right off the bat: Give Them Grace is not another run-of-the-mill parenting self-help book. It is not a step-by-step program to change your kids into obedient angels. There is no program. It doesn't exist. As Tullian Tchividjian says in the foreword:
“As every parent knows, behavioral compliance to rules without heart change will be shallow and short-lived.”*
“Any obedience not grounded in or motivated by the gospel is unsustainable.”
Give Them Grace is written by a mother-daughter team who approach the issue of Christian parenting from the theory and the practical levels. They assert that ultimately, Christian parenting should look different…
“And should a Christian's response differ significantly from what we might hear from a loving Mormon mom or a conscientious Jewish father?”
“Is there something that would make a Christian's response distinctly Christian?”
My parenting as a Christ-follower needs to be based on the Bible and on grace. The biggest difference in our parenting (and our worldview in general) is the understanding that the law can't save us and doesn't perfect us. The law exists to show us that we need a Savior. Morals and manners are great and needed, but these are not the gospel and do not equal Christian righteousness.
I want to be a good parent. I want to be a faithful parent. But, I have to remember in the end, it is not my faithfulness or lack of faithfulness that will save my kids. Only God can save my kids. He might choose to use me in the process, but salvation only comes from God.
After reading the foreword and introduction of Give Them Grace, what do you have to say? Does your parenting look different from your Mormon neighborhood or the Muslim family down the street? Share your thoughts in the comments below and in the Family Discipleship Facebook Group.
Have you written a blog post on the foreword or introduction that you'd like to share? Please add it to the link-up!
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*I'm reading the Kindle version of Give Them Grace so I'm unable to give you page numbers when I quote.