Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Book Review: Discipline That Connects With Your Child's Heart

Jim and Lynne Jackson's Discipline That Connects With Your Child's Heart:  Building Faith, Wisdom & Character in the Messes of Daily Life seeks to "teach four powerful principles for discipline that shape both behavior and your kid's heart."

At the onset, I really did not know what to expect.  I was alarmed that this book was really off or spot on.  What did I conclude?  It is a little bit of both.

I appreciated the fact that the authors did not attempt to present a fix-it-all method to children.  There are so many things I appreciate about this book such as the My Response section which encourages parents to examine and deal with what is going on in their own hearts before attempting to minister correction to their children.   They carefully detailed that the child's misbehavior can not be dealt with at face value.  There are deeper issues going on within the child that the parent must deal with.  Hence, they introduce their four principle method of Foundation (You are safe with me), Connect (You are Loved no matter what), Coach (You are Called and Capable), and Correct (You are Responsible for your actions). They provide so many practical ways of how parents can deal with a variety of issues that may arise.   

While there was a lot of useful information, there are things lacking.  Whereas, the authors encouraged parents to look at the big picture while disciplining their children, it lacked in showing the bigger picture-eternity.  The focus seemed misplaced at times.  While I understand the Gifts Gone Awry part, there was not an emphasis in teaching the children that the misbehavior was sinful and the eternal consequences of practicing sin.  The authors almost made it seem as if sharing this would make the child feel condemned and not encouraged.  Presenting only the hopeful parts of the gospel while neglecting to show the dangers of rejecting the gospel is not the full gospel.  By the time I reached what the authors refer to as parents reaching that "crazy place," I was done with the book.  

While there is a lot of useful information to glean from the book, I walked away from this book disappointed.  I do not want to commend a child who lied for being creative or having a good memory.  As a parent, I want to be able to deal with sin in a Biblical manner without sugar coating the gospel.  This may be a starting point for parents who need to learn that discipline is more than correcting external behavior but I would encourage the parent to continue searching the Scriptures.

                                                                       I received this book for free from Bethany House for this review.

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May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer. Psalm 19:14