We all think our children are pretty awesome, right? Come on, you know you are one proud parent!
Have you ever had the thought cross your mind that your children are better than so and so's because you've done such a good job raising them this far?
Let's be honest.
I'm over here raising my hand.
I've totally had those thoughts cross my mind. I've also been one to hold high expectations of my first born because she is so mentally mature for her age. I often have to remind myself she's only 7, not 14.
While I'm not really proud to admit this, I'm that mom who lays down the law of what behavior I expect from my kids before we walk into a church fellowship function or a friends house for a playdate.
I don't want my kids to be the ones every fellow mom goes home and talks about with her husband.
"Those Cunningham girls were so out of control."
Nope. They need to behave themselves...so I won't be embarrassed or look bad in the eyes of the other moms.
Can you relate?
Or is it just me?
I also enjoy bragging about my daughters when the opportunity presents itself... like now!
--> My four year old recently demonstrated to me her ability to read an entire sentence in a local Giant Eagle restroom. How awesome is that?! Who ever said "screen time" was a bad thing? We have the iPad educational apps to thank for that new ability.
--> My seven year old is so advanced in her school work that I've convinced myself she should be in a gifted program...because I don't want her to get bored and stop working hard in school.
Wouldn't labeling her as gifted give her a false sense that she doesn't have to work hard for anything, that all things in life will naturally come easy to her...so why should she bother trying at all?
I'm thankful to have gotten my hands on a book I'm about to tell you about.
The folks at DavidCCook.com (they publish all of the Francis and Lisa Chan books/products) contacted me with an opportunity to receive a free copy of the recently published book Trophy Child by Ted Cunningham (no relation to me) in exchange for my honest review.
About the Book:
From the back cover (because I really believe this is the best description)...
Do you cringe when your kids fight in public because it makes you look bad? Do you find yourself helping too much with homework because you want the teacher to be impressed? Do you secretly take credit for your child's soccer win? You might be in danger of vanity parenting.
Vanity parenting happens when our culture's obsession with performance leads us to form expectations for our kids based on the world's standards. As a result, our children try to meet our emotional needs instead of growing into the calling God has for them.
Trophy Child will help you create a home where your children find success in following their heavenly Father - and you know the joy of seeing your children embrace their full potential as children of God.
What I Loved:
I loved that this book is 9 chapters and a very easy read. Here are the names of the chapters to give you an idea of the topics of discussion:
- Chapter 1 - Trophies
- Chapter 2 - Trophy Parents
- Chapter 3 - Know Limits
- Chapter 4 - Everything Jesus Said About Children and Parents
- Chapter 5 - Spiritual Journeys
- Chapter 6 - Kids Who Follow Jesus
- Chapter 7 - Preparing Our Children For the World
- Chapter 8 - Adulthood Milestones
- Chapter 9 - Great Parents, Lousy Lovers
I loved that Author, Ted Cunningham doesn't claim to be perfect. He admits to putting his own children up on a pedestal for their accomplishments and potential. Early on in the book Ted shares "in the past, I was a trophy collector, both in sports and parenting. That nonsense stops here and now."
I loved how he describes modern day parenting as being very kid-centered..."parents believe they are doing their children a service by elevating them and over encouraging them." Isn't that so true? I've been guilty of this myself! My parents never coddled me from experiencing failure, or protected me from the realization I wasn't perfect and would have to work hard at some things, more than others.
I loved that he describes several different parenting "types" and then proceeds to ask hard questions, some of which were uncomfortable for me to answer even though I was only answering them to myself.
Is the bar set too high in your home?
What is driving your need to compare your children to others?
Have you rescued your child too quickly before all lessons could be learned?
I loved that the Ted weaves scripture throughout the book.
I loved his thoughts in the chapter titled Spiritual Journey. Ted says, "There are two ways parents teach a love for God: modeling and instructing. When we regularly immerse our children in conversation about who God is, His character, His creation, we build an awareness of Him into who they are as people. When we model a love for Him we inspire a thirst in them."
I loved that he shares 26 fun family devotionals for the readers to work on as a family during meal time or family time.
I loved the last chapter devoted to the importance of having a strong marriage. Ted shares, "Your children have a front-row seat to your marriage. The two greatest gifts we can give our children are a mom and a dad who enjoy life together, and the hope of a great marriage of their own."
He goes on to share a list of couple activities to help place marriage back in a high priority position.
What I Disliked:
This is going to sound silly, but the only thing I didn't like about the book was the cover. It didn't grab my attention or wow me at all.
If I were to walk down the aisle of a bookstore looking at parenting books, this would never grab my eye tempting me to pick the book up off the shelf and scan through the pages to see if it was something I'd like to read. But this book isn't just for women to read. It's good for both moms and dads. So I can understand why they went with the chosen images and design.
Aside from that, I have nothing bad to say about this book.
If you're a parent with children from very young to mid-teens, I think you'll find this book interesting and valuable to read. It was incredibly convicting to me on many levels as a very proud mom to two young and extremely smart daughters. This book will help you prepare your children for something greater than themselves.
Are you guilty of being a trophy parent? Are you over-protective? Do you model a love for God? I'd love for you to share your thoughts and experiences.
Blessings to you,
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