Keeping Your Kids on God's Side
by Natasha Crain, Harvest House Publishers, © 2016,
269 pages, $14.99 (paperback), ISBN-13: 978-0‑7369-6508-8
As Christian parents, we look for ways to build faith in our children. We need to be very careful that we do not indoctrinate them with our views and understandings, but that we help them build a solid faith of their own that will sustain them throughout life, not just the time they are in our house. This is hard to do. Teenagers go through a stage in which they question everything. I think many of our readers have had the situation in life that I have had, where it seems that everything I say is automatically assumed to be wrong. Rather than get defensive, we need to have built a foundation that belongs to the child, not to us with our pushing the child to parrot what we believe. This book is a useful tool in the pursuit of leading children to have their own faith.
Crain has broken the book into five parts called “conversations.” These conversations each have eight questions that kids ask. The conversations are about: God, Truth and Worldviews, Jesus, the Bible, and Science. As an example of the questions, in the “Conversations about God” section there are questions discussed that include, “How can a loving God send people to hell?” and “Why would God need people to worship him?” In the Bible section, questions about the Bible's apparent support of rape, slavery, and human sacrifice are discussed. There are 40 questions discussed in this book. I would suggest a great family devotional subject would be to take each question Crain gives, read it, and discuss it to give kids an answer to these vital issues of faith.
When Crain hits a contested issue, she makes it a point to discuss the issue head-on without being judgmental. The age of the earth issue, for example, is explained from both a young earth and an old earth perspective. The science she gives is accurate and well done, but she does not state an opinion about the issue leaving it to the reader to decide what they will accept.
We recommend this book highly, not just for parents to use to build a catalog of answers to faith issues in their children, but also for adult readers who may have questions of their own.