Book Review: Grace-Based Parenting by Tim Kimmel

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What is this book about?

Grace-based Parenting is a way to parent children that is gospel-centered instead of morality-centered. Tim Kimmel wisely and gently guides parents to a better way of parenting through personal stories of compassion, grace, love, and perspective. While some may wonder if a parenting based in grace would be too lenient, Kimmel shows that that is absolutely not the case. However, he does challenge some of the parenting frameworks that have been passed down to modern day parents, particularly the ones that lean towards the extremes, but also that rely on behavior modification and fear of others’ opinions or imagined dangers all around. He makes a case that the three gifts that children must receive from us are love, purpose, and hope, and those only come through an environment of grace that is set by parents.

Why did I choose to review this?

I very much desire my parenting to reflect the love and grace of God to my kids. But I don’t know how to do that. It’s not my automatic response to give grace. What does that look like when raising kids? How do you give grace and keep standards? I go back and forth between wondering if I’m too strict and being convinced I’m not strict enough. I’ve read many parenting books on making kids obey, but not about creating environments of grace.

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My takeaway:

Jake and I are rereading this book together this summer because it’s that good. Despite this book being about grace, I felt convicted through reading this book of some changes that need to happen in our parenting. One key quote that sums up it all:

God has given parents the responsibility to be the gatekeepers of His grace.

Questions I’m now asking:

1. What does it look like to offer grace to my kids? And my husband too, while I’m at it?

2. Why am I so afraid to offer grace to my kids, but find grace to be as important as oxygen for myself?

Where you can go to find more: 

You can find out more about Tim Kimmel at his website, Family Matters: Building Grace-Based Relationships. It looks like he has a blog that his staff blogs at on a daily basis as well.  The organization is on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, and YouTube.

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