Growing With: Every Parent's Guide to Helping Teenagers and Young Adults Thrive in Their Faith, Family, and Future

Growing With: Every Parent's Guide to Helping Teenagers and Young Adults Thrive in Their Faith, Family, and Future

by Kara Powell, Steven Argue


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Growing With: Every Parent's Guide to Helping Teenagers and Young Adults Thrive in Their Faith, Family, and Future 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 12 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have read many other resources created by the Fuller Youth Institute and writers Kara Powell and Steven Argue, and all of their work has been heavily steeped in both research and practical ways to apply their findings. When they announced they were teaming up for Growing With, I knew the book would be another invaluable resource that would give me specific ways to implement effective strategies in our youth group and with my future kids. Growing With did not disappoint—it comes from two experienced parents, youth mentors, and researchers, and it provides clear and data-based explanations for all the tips and recommendations offered. The overarching premise that we need to grow and adapt as parents just as we expect our kids to grow and adapt seems obvious, but this book challenged me to think deeply about my own growth in a new way. Powell and Argue give new language and understanding to general stages of development and the corresponding roles that parents need to fill to best parent their child at every phase of life. Within each phase, they also explain (with useful, practical ideas!) how we can grow together as a family; they turn "with," "faith," and "adult" into verbs and provide examples of how parents can incorporate withing, faithing, and adulting into family routines and norms. Best of all, they leave room for you to apply all of their strategies within your specific context, but they are never condescending or assuming. They understand that parenting is messy and complex, and that the kids in our lives are equally dynamic and complicated. They aren't here to tell you that you are failing as a parent; in fact, they do a great job of sharing their own parenting struggles and encouraging readers in their own challenges. As someone who is expecting a baby this spring, I am so grateful to have this book early in my parenting journey. It's given me a rich understanding of how I can focus on my own growth while adapting to meet the needs of my son as he becomes an adult. But even if you don't have kids, anyone who works with youth or wants to be a meaningful contributor to a church body will benefit from reading this book. I took away tons of ideas for my role as a youth pastor, and I have fresh language to give my congregation about how they can pour into the lives of our young church members. My book is full of highlights, especially in the sections where they list specific tactics or initiatives to try. I am eager to apply these with my own child and with the youth in my church, and I will be returning to this book often!
StephanieZ More than 1 year ago
Growing With by Kara Powell and Steven Argue is an excellent resource for any parent and for anyone who works with young people. Using solid research and real-life stories, the authors guide parents of 13-29-year-olds through the changing seasons of parenting emerging adult children. Despite being research-based, the book keeps readers’ interest and motivates them in their own growth journeys. There are not only doable application steps included throughout the content, but there are thought-provoking, helpful questions at the end of each chapter. I personally found an abundance of help and encouragement for my roles as both parent and ministry leader. I enthusiastically recommend this book.
jdarnauer More than 1 year ago
The good folks at the Fuller Youth Institute have done it again by producing another stellar book. Their latest book is right in line with the quality of research and practicality of their previous works (Sticky Faith, Growing Young, etc), which I have loved and read multiple times. In Growing With, Kara Powell and Steven Argue write to parents of teenagers and young adults as well as those who work with them. After summarizing what it’s like to grow up today as a teenager and young adult today, in contrast to previous generations, they offer a framework of the unique needs of young people today and how the adults who care for them can help them. They divide these crucial years of growth into three categories and then delineate the most helpful posture of parents for that age – learners (high school age) with parents a teachers, explorers (college age) with parents as guides, focusers (mid-late twenties) with parents as resources. They go on and give in-depth statistical research and insight of each stage in three key areas… social support (what they call “withing”), faith development (“faithing”), and developing key life skills of being an adult (“adulting”). Each section includes findings from their own thorough research, along with summaries of other’s findings. But what sets this book apart for parents are the wellspring of stories and practical ideas of how to implement their ideas and conclusions. Although my kids are not to this age quite yet, I found myself inspired, informed, and equipped with ample practical ideas of how I can be a more intentional parent. They share many personal stories of their own struggles and victories as parents, which gives the whole book a very gracious, “we’re-in-this-along-with-you” feel. Rather than feeling overwhelmed and inadequate at not living up an unattainable standard as a parent, I feel like the road before me has become more clear and my motivation solidified to adapt my parenting style to the unique stages and needs of my kids. As a Family Pastor who works with parents of kids and young adults each week, I will certainly recommend this book to others and reference it often in my encouragement of other parents. I have come across many good parenting resources over the years. But many of them are geared mainly at parents of teenagers. This book includes parents of teenagers but blazes new trails in helping parents of 20-somethings figure out what their changing-but-still-crucial roles look like with their emerging adult children. Thank you Kara Powell, Steven Argue, and the whole FYI team for such a gift to parents today. I can’t recommend this book enough for parents looking to increase their awareness of their kids and sharpen their vision for how to be a better parent. Disclaimer: I received a complimentary advance copy of this book in exchange for my honest review and feedback of this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
As the mom to a high school freshman...and two more coming up behind her, this book couldn't have come at a better time. The concept of "growing with parenting" is that as parents we are growing too and can grow with our children as they grow up and we can grow together as God transforms us. The further I get into parenting, the less I know and the more I need God. The research in Growing With is strong and helpful. Kara and Steve tell many personal stories of raising their own teens and young adults that are very relatable. They offer key phrases and questions to use with our teens. I have been recommending this book to so many. Parents, grandparents, teachers, youth pastors, lead pastors...they all need to read it! Thank you Kara and Steve for your efforts into formulating this powerful concept and supporting it with research and your own stories.
Web_Rev More than 1 year ago
I am thankful for this helpful and practical book. I am grateful as both a parent as well as pastor. As a parent this book encourages me in my personal journey of helping my two teenagers grow in their faith and preparing them to flourish in the adventure ahead of them. I know I am a better equipped parent for having read this book. Perhaps it is the stage my kids are out now, but part four of the book about “adulting” was most helpful to me for understanding the dynamics of connecting with others in these times of flux. As a pastor, I am happy to have this wonderful resource available refer to fellow parents and ministry volunteers. Many parenting resources focus on the early years of childhood, but this book adresses the teeenage and young adult ages. I will be wholeheartedly recommending this resource to others.
Andrew Jones More than 1 year ago
“Here we go again”, you might be thinking, but Growing With is not just another Christian parenting book offering trite answers or cliché solutions. With teenagers of my own, I have agonized trying to guide them to make wise choices, build a family relationship, and have a vibrant faith. Though my goal has been to provide a bright future for them, we more often seemed to fight than agree. Growing With has changed my perspective of, and approach to, parenting the two young people in my home! Growing With is a research-based guide to parenting a new generations with love, grace, and hope. While it describes the challenges faced by young people 13-30. Instead of giving steps, it encourages authenticity as families journey together. Parents aren’t merely practitioners, but fellow pilgrims – growing with young people – as the title suggests. How parents support independence, model faith, and relinquish control can help young people develop lives of purpose and meaning and grow closer to their families. If you have struggled in a tug of war with a teen or young adult concerning the direction of their future, Growing With will help you to trust God as these young people blaze a new path in a world far different than their parents experienced. Giving up control doesn’t mean giving up connection. Instead, it means offering authentic support, loving example, and patient release. Growing with acknowledges the difficult reality of parenting today, and highlights the importance of continuing the journey long after the typical milestones of graduation or leaving home. This parenting book isn’t about making kids behave or creating the perfect child. It is about the development of families. Parents and kids growing together on the journey of life.
PastorTy More than 1 year ago
A must read for parents! Growing With is a book by Kara Powell, and Steven Argue and it comes out of Fuller Seminary's Youth Institute. Seriously, the things that they produce are THE BEST resources on students, faith, and ministry for youth! This book is no different. The book comes out of some extensive research on young people (teens-twenties) and their faith habits and patterns. Growing with takes an honest look at the trends for faith in young people today, and draws out ways that parents, ministers, and friends of young people can help to inspire faith in the next generation. Some of this research can feel tedious as you read through the first part of the book, but Powell and Argue do a really good job of balancing important information and practical tools for parents. Withing, Faithing, Adulting Growing With is all about how parents can grow together with their children as they mature, leave home, and make big life decisions in their 20's. The book breaks this Growing with strategy up into three categories "Withing, Faithing, and Adulting." The focus is on how parents can help their kids grow in life, in faith, and in interdependence as they age and mature. One of the most impactful takeaways from the book for me was the way Powell and Argue redefined the stages our kids transition through as they grow up. They argue that as young people grow up they move through three different phases: Learner - "A season of rapid physical, emotional, relational, intellectual, and spiritual growth and change." Typically ages 13-18. Explorer - "As our kids leave adolescence and launch into emerging adulthood, they often venture for the first time away from home... to pursue their goals, relationships, and beliefs. Explorers feel excited about the future yet unsure about themselves." Typically, 18-23. Focuser - "Landing on the Path(s) that best fits." Focusers are "Focusing on their careers, on their relationships, on their beliefs, and on a reset." Typically, 23-29. As your kids move through these phases the role of the parent changes from "Teachers" to "Guides" to "Resources." Growing with does an excellent job at identifying the different stages young people are walking through, and the specific challenges they are facing. And with that Powell and Argue provide a wealth of advice, counsel, personal wins and losses, and encouragement for parents who are growing with their kids. I loved this book, and I cant stress enough how much this book has to offer for parents and ministers working with students. I cannot wait to share this book with our parents, and to apply these lessons to my own parenting! "A mutual journey of intentional growth for both ourselves and our children that trusts God to transform us all."
chaphenricks More than 1 year ago
Kara and Steve have assembled a book that challenges current assumptions and changes ways of thinking as we seek to grow alongside our churches and young people. In lieu of the traditional age-based model of adolescents and young adults, Kara and Steve argue from their research and breadth of experience that we should look to a new set of categories when describing those ranging in age from 13-29. These new categories - Learner, Explorer, and Focuser - are more loosely connected to age and firmly connected to a place of social development. Growing With offers nuanced categories for mentors and parents as well, and uses the buckets of family, faith, and future to provide structure to thier discussion and insights for growing with our young adults. If you have any interaction with young adults at all, as a parent or in your church, this book is a must read for you!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
As a parent, I'm really grateful for this book. As a pastor, I'm relieved that parents can have this book in their arsenal. Here's what I love: 1. The book is incredibly informative. Backed by Fuller Theological Seminary, the book is full of original and published research. It's not "fluffy;" what they write is what the best data would tell you. It can get stuffy, sometimes, so if you don't care about the research, skip it (the authors give you permission in the book). 2. It's incredibly practical. The authors (Kara & Steven) give incredible examples, both personal and learned, that are really easily implemented into family life. Every chapter has applications. Some of them are revolutionary. But, I imagine, if you're reading a parenting book, some of the tips won't be that surprising. And honestly, that was okay with me, because it made me realize I wasn't alone! 3. It's the perfect combination of depth, length, and levity. I've read 3 other books for parents this year (leave me alone, it's for research). This book said more, more clearly and with more detail. It's a no-brainer.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Growing with is a gamechanger for parenting. It brilliantly helps you understand how to grow with your teen and young adult through the ever-widening and confusing stage called growing up. It sets a framework that will help you understand where your kid is at and how you can change your parenting approach to fit the stage they are in. It also is filled with practical examples so you walk away from the book with more than just theory, you see what it looks like in practice. As a youth pastor and as a parent of a teen and a young adult, this book was like an Oasis in the challenge of parenting that gave hope, peace, and strength for the journey ahead!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Kara and Steve have combined years of research, pastoring, and parenting into a resource that helps those of us leading the next generation to a more robust understanding of faith. Often times we think of faith as a product that we have, but faith is a process in which we find ourselves. Kara and Steve bring language around this idea of faith as process. For parents, this book will relieve some stress when it comes to understanding your young person and faith. But this book also gives practical next steps that you can take.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Growing With is a must-read book for parents and mentors of teenagers and young adults, as well as children of all ages. Even if parents have young children, the ideas shared in this book will help them prepare for when their kids get older. The definition of Growing With parenting, as shared in the book, sums up what the parenting journey should be: “A mutual journey of intentional growth for both ourselves and our children that trusts God to transform us all.” Kara Powell and Steven Argue use the dynamic verbs withing, faithing, and adulting as ways adults can support young people in life and in faith. If you want to understand what role to play as a parent or mentor, at different points in young people’s lives, you need to read Growing With.