Let me just say by way of introduction that Dr. Kimmel nails it in this book. I received this book anticipating the read like few books other. This book, I believe has many answers to effective family ministry within the local church. We live in a culture where churches are busy with overwhelmed families, and we must model, teach, and equip families to leave a Godly legacy with their kids.
Chapter two really sets the tone as much as chapter one. Chapter two is entitled, “Homegrown Faith.” Dr. Kimmel gives two illustrations of different families. He worked in a church as a nursery worker, and noticed these two families. One family was extremely committed to personally growing in their faith. The other family was reliant on the church for their spiritual growth. Now, Dr. Kimmel is not claiming that the church is not important to the spiritual health of an individual. When the children grew up, Dr. Kimmel noticed that the families resembled the family structure, not the church. You see these two families grew up in the same church and had the same pastor, but still they modeled when they grew up how they were raised in the home more than how they were raised in a church. This is the beginning of understanding and realizing that the church is important, but to see students excel spiritually for a lifetime, it must happen at the home! Kids must see Godliness modeled in their home by their parents. This is where graced based parenting is introduced.
Dr. Kimmel goes on to discuss the strategy of a grace based parenting system. He defines this as treating others the way that God treats us. This is in every relationship in the home. Dr. Kimmel writes, “By making God’s grace the philosophical starting point of everything we do, we guarantee that whatever is done will be done within an authentic connection to our kids’ heart” (P. 58). Grace based parenting gives kids the answers to many of their inner questions. Grace based parenting provides and seeks to meet the inner needs of your kids. Dr. Kimmel mentions many different inner needs that kids have, and parenting in a grace filled way meets those needs. Kids also want freedom. Grace based parenting provides you the means of how to parent students with this freedom that they so desire. Then, grace based parenting builds character into the heart of your child. This is the end result if you follow the simple steps that Dr. Kimmel gives that flow from a grace based parenting strategy. Grace based parenting is a parenting strategy that seeks to produce heart change in the life of our kids. This type of parenting results in kids who inwardly love Jesus and inwardly wants to serve Him. By the way, if you change the heart, their outward actions will change to imitate Jesus as well.
Le me encourage you to pick up a copy of this book. This book is a “must read” for parents and for anyone serving in the local church. We must seek to connect the church and the home. We must have them both working together for the sake of the next generation(s).
About Dr. Tim Kimmel: Dr. Tim Kimmel is one of America’s top advocates speaking for the family today. He is the President and CEO of Family Matters®, whose goal is to equip families for every age and stage of life. Tim and Family Matters conduct the Raising Truly Great Kids conference across the country, giving parents advise on the unique pressures that confront them today. Over the past three decades, Tim has spoken to millions of people throughout the country. He has spoken for Promise Keepers, Focus on the Family’s Life on the Edge Tour, and he and his wife, Darcy, are speakers for FamilyLife Ministry’s Weekend To Remember conferences.
In addition to speaking, he has authored several books including best sellerLittle House On The Freeway and award winning Grace Based Parenting. All together, there are more than 800,000 copies of Dr. Kimmel’s books equipping men, parents and couples across the globe, including single parents and blended families. He has also developed small group video studies such as the Grace Based Parenting Video Series,Grandparenthood, The Hurried Family, and Basic Training For A Few Good Men.