5 Fabulous New Books for Intentional Parenting

Excellent books for intentional parenting.

Intentional parenting in today’s culture is hard, but it can be done well if you have a plan. These five books are excellent resources for parents who want to raise godly, responsible children. Together, they will help you come up with an intentional parenting plan.

20 questions that every mom needs to ask, plus Bible based answers.The 20 Hardest Questions Every Mom Faces: Praying Your Way to Realistic, Biblical Answers

This book has been sitting in my Kindle app for a long time. But now I know why God led me to read it last weekend. My oldest child is 13 years old, and spent his entire life in Christian school until this January. He’s now thriving in public school, but this mama’s heart has been concerned and afraid of the big change.

Dannah Gresh has written a honest, funny, and gritty book about the questions every mom needs to ask herself. You are probably already asking yourself questions like these without even knowing it:

  • Am I messing up my kids?
  • Should I work or stay at home?
  • Should we do sleepovers?
  • How do I keep my kids from walking away from the faith?
  • Should my child have a cell phone?
  • At what age should be have “the talk,” and should I tell them about my past?
  • Should I allow my child to have the Gardasil vaccine?

These questions have struck fear into my heart many times. Like an older, wiser girlfriend, Dannah offers wise, heartfelt, humble answers with a big dose of laughter. She helped me examine different angles on these important questions, and I appreciate that all her answers were grounded in God’s Word.

If you know a fearful mom, or if you are one, this book will help you face the crucial decisions of motherhood with confidence. You will be enabled to practice intentional parenting with greater faith. Even though my oldest son is in a different environment now with new dangers and temptations, I’m putting more trust in God, and this book is pointing the way.

Thank you to Netgalley for providing me a free review copy.

20 questions every mom needs to ask, with Bible-based answers. Click To Tweet

Learn your calling as a mother and find encouragement for intentional parenting.

Wholehearted Motherhood

Sarah Behan is one of my blogging friends. I interviewed her in 2016, and you can read about her life in New Zealand here. She has written a lovely, thoughtful book on motherhood, and I’m happy to share a review with you today.

Sarah’s book is brief, but it is rich with insight. She is well-read and selects thoughtful quotes for inspiration. In this book, you’ll learn how biblical freedom releases you from guilt and shame and gives you peace.

Sarah honors and upholds the biblical model of motherhood. She affirms motherhood as both a worthy calling and a significant challenge that will reap huge rewards for the next generation. Sarah encourages moms to depend on God for provision by exercising faith in intentional parenting.

Thank you, Sarah, for providing me a free copy of this book! Fellow bloggers…she would love to provide you with a free review copy too. Request it here.

Motherhood is a worthy calling--a challenge that reaps rewards for the next generation. Click To Tweet

Excellent book for a graduating senior, youth ministry group, or personal study.

Choosing a Life That Matters: 7 Decisions You’ll Never Regret

For years I’ve listened to Dennis Rainey on Family Life Today. I was eager to read his latest book, and reading it was just like listening to his practical, biblical advice on the radio.

Dennis writes with an engaging down-to-earth style. This would be an excellent gift book for a graduating senior, whether a girl or boy. This book would also make a great group discussion guide for youth ministry. I may use it as a one-to-one Bible study springboard with my own children.

Here are a few of my favorite quotes from his book:

  • Our hearts were made to hunger, which is one reason temptation can pull us so easily along.
  • Wisdom is a godly skill for everyday living. It is the application of knowledge…in how to “do life” the way God designed it. Wisdom takes the raw components of life and skillfully crafts them, makes them beautiful and purposeful as God intended life to be.
  • Seeking God requires a determination, a commitment, a wholehearted pursuit. We won’t wish our way into it; there’s no such thing as an ambivalent God seeker.

Dennis illustrates the book with real-life stories of his own childhood, his marriage, and his intentional parenting years. I enjoyed his humble spirit and friendly, yet firm, advice. He also includes many different reading references which would be a blessing to explore. Full of sound advice, this book is a gentle and kindhearted inspirational read.

Netgalley was gracious to provide me a free review copy of this book.

Excellent book of solid guidance for a graduating senior. Click To Tweet

Powerful advice for raising godly, responsible men through intentional parenting.

Raising Men, Not Boys: Shepherding Your Sons to be Men of God

Every book I’ve reviewed from Moody is steeped in the truth of God’s Word, and this one is no different. I know Mike Fabarez from his radio program, and his signature mixture of biblical knowledge and common sense advice shines in this book.

From the first chapter, you can tell that a no-nonsense, tough-love-based author is writing this book. He has powerful words for both moms and dads, and he gives voice to a much-needed, often ignored perspective in our child-focused culture. His whole premise is taking the long view on raising children, and not being afraid to lovingly but firmly exercise your authority as a parent.

He does not shy away from controversial subjects like these:

  • Your child is not your #1 priority–that’s God, then marriage.
  • Biblical headship and submission can create peace in your home.
  • Make as few rules as possible and stick to them.
  • Physical discipline is loving for young children. For older children, discipline needs to be creative and consistent.

I’m planning to reread this book and make an intentional parenting action plan for my two sons. I want to teach them about giving to the church, being chivalrous, the power of humility, and curbing their desires for constant entertainment. This book offers practical tips on each of those issues.

I truly enjoyed Mike’s honest stories of his own parenting mishaps and victories. They inspired me and gave me hope that my two boys can grow up to be strong, godly men, just like his sons have done.

Moody Publishers provided me a free copy of this excellent book.

How to raise boys to be godly, responsible men. Click To Tweet

Fascinating and helpful read for intentional parenting of teens. #gamechanger

Your Teenager Is Not Crazy: Understanding Your Teen’s Brain Can Make You a Better Parent

In the Parenting Teens Summit I watched a few months ago, I was captivated by the message presented by this intelligent couple. In easy-to-understand language, they use brain research to help you understand why teens act the way they do and how the information can help you in your quest for intentional parenting.

I became a mom of a teen last year, and I’m scrambling to get my hands on the very best resources for parenting teens. This is probably the most useful one I’ve found so far. It’s not one to read in a single sitting. There is so much game-shifting information to process that you need some time to absorb. But this book is literally making me into a calmer, more patient, and more understand mother of my teenage son.

I now understand these things about my teen that exasperated me before:

  • His constant complaint of “I’m bored” is actually healthy, because his brain craves new experiences.
  • His late-night open conversation channel is biologically programmed (unfortunately, right when my energy level tanks).
  • He has perhaps a 50% success rate in accurately interpreting my facial expressions, while I have a 100% success rate as an adult, since his brain is still developing and mine is “old.” That’s why he keeps saying, “Why do you look so mad, Mom?” when I have a neutral expression.

I’m only halfway through this book, and it’s a gem. Well worth the purchase price. I’ll close with this powerful and encouraging quote:

Parenting a teen is difficult work. God alone enables us to do it well. Every day, we need to put our faith and hope in the goodness of our heavenly Father…It’s not enough to know in general terms that God loves the world. Trusting in his love, grace, and peace for you is your source of help and hope.

Fascinating study of teen brains that will help you become a better parent. Click To Tweet

Question for you: Which book looks most interesting to you? I love hearing your thoughts in the comments section!

Check out my other parenting book reviews:

Two Books to Equip Salt & Light Parents

Essential guide books for Christian intentional parenting and engaging in the current culture.

A Fresh Batch of Parenting Books

Five new parenting books on motherhood, parenting girls, parenting teens, adoption, and media use.

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32 thoughts on “5 Fabulous New Books for Intentional Parenting

  1. These look great! I must admit, since I’ll have a teenager next week (how did that even happen?!) that last book is looking mighty good!

    1. Congratulations on getting to a new parenting stage, Becky! Knowing your taste in books, I think you will really enjoy it.

    1. Yes indeed…I have loved every stage of parenting, but this one has its unique challenges. Thanks for sharing it!

  2. These look really good, especially that last one! Remembering our teens are going through hormonal changes, brain changes, and YES walking around with developing brains helps us have more patience. I guess? I found 9 time in 10, if I’d just ride out the storm calmly, it would end! 🙂 With my daughter I’d remind myself: Just because she crying today doesn’t mean she won’t feel happy tomorrow… I love coming here and learning about new books.

    1. I love hearing from moms who have gone before me. Thanks for your words of encouragement. At least my daughter is the youngest…I have a feeling the teen rapids will be hardest to ride then, but my boys will be older and wiser, and able to help us out. Oh, the grocery bill when my stairstep kids are 14, 16, and 18 though!!!

  3. Some of these titles made me smile, and I’m teaching a parenting workshop with my husband in March, so it would be a good thing for me to check some of these new books out so I can recommend them as resources for attendees.
    Thanks, Sarah1

    1. I’m sure your parenting workshop will be amazing, Michele. Hopefully these resources will bless the parents in your area. Thanks for reading!

  4. Even though I’m no longer in the active season of parenting, I have so many friends who are. So it’s good to hear of these resources. Thanks, Sarah!

  5. I love finding new parenting books that raise the bar from the basics! Thank you for the great recommendations to add to my list. 🙂 Pinned!!

  6. Thank you! I love that your picks cover the parenting issues right where my kids are. My oldest is also 13; a boy. I also have three daughters: 11 yo, 9 yo, and 8 yo. Your Teen is Not Crazy looks the most intriguing to me. I like when there is a scientific basis or research in a parenting book. Like Dr. Dobson’s Bringing Up Girls and Bringing Up Boys. Except those were a little doom and gloom.

    1. I really loved those two books from Dr. Dobson. They shaped my parenting path when my children were babies. Mine are 13, 11, and 9…you and I are walking a similar path! Thanks for stopping by today, Rachel!

  7. Which book? All of them! Gosh, these all sound good, Sarah. Thanks for sharing. I’ll be pinning this one. 😉

  8. Good reviews, Sarah. I think the one that interests me the most is Choosing a Life that Matters. I love the title and as my kids are a bit older, it’s more appropriate.

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