Big Picture Parents: Ancient Wisdom for Modern Life

Big Picture Parents: Ancient Wisdom for Modern Life

by Harriet Connor


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Being a parent in the modern world is tough. We are often overwhelmed with fear about damaging our children, guilt about our imperfections, and confusion about our role. Harriet Connor knows these feelings well. But hers is not just another parenting book full of ""shoulds and shouldn'ts"" to make you feel worse. Rather, she invites you to step back and consider the bigger picture:

What is the purpose of life and parenthood?
What are our human limitations?
How can we cope with our guilt and fear?
What are our family's values and how do we pass them on?
What is our family's structure and place within the wider community?

When she was desperate for answers, Harriet Connor turned to the ancient wisdom of her ancestors--the Bible. She went looking for little pieces of grandmotherly advice, but what she found was a grand vision--a big picture--that made sense of both life and parenthood.

Whether you are new to the Bible or have read it before, you will not regret taking time to reflect on its message, which has given comfort and guidance to generations of parents just like you.


""I wish this book had been written when I first became a mother almost thirty years ago. Big Picture Parents is a thoroughly readable, wise, and encouraging book. It provides a helpful biblical framework and a fresh way of thinking about being a parent. I will be giving it to any new parent or about-to-become parent to help them as they make the enormous change from life before children to life after delivery. This book will be a blessing to all parents.""
--Sarah Condie, pastor; Co-director, the Mental Health and Pastoral Care Institute, Sydney, Australia

""'All we want is for our children to be happy' is the absolute unchallenged axiom of our time. But what if, ironically, by chasing this elusive goal we are making not just our children, but ourselves less happy? This book gives parents a wise framework for understanding our children, ourselves, and our world. In doing so, not only will the parent be happier, but so also will the child.""
--Sam Chan, national communicator, City Bible Forum, Australia; public speaker; theologian; author of Preaching as the Word of God

""This is a refreshing book, written with humor and grace. It is full of biblical wisdom and its practical outworkings, for all kinds of families.""
--Kirsten Birkett, Latimer Research Fellow, Oak Hill College, UK; author of Resilience - A Spiritual Project and The Essence of Family


""Parenting is one of those extremely important tasks that really should require a trial run. But by its very nature parents cannot have a trial run. Perhaps the best they can do is to get the whole task of parenting into perspective. Big Picture Parents is extremely useful for developing an overall perspective that will position parents in the best place to nurture their children. It is to be highly commended.""
--Michael Hill, former vice-principal and lecturer in Ethics, Moore Theological College, Sydney; author of The Heart of Marriage and The How and Why of Love

""A timely book for today's culture, Big Picture Parents is a lifeline for parents drowning in information overload. In a society that constantly twists the values, roles, and priorities of parents, Harriet Connor guides our feet to the solid ground of God's Word. She masterfully uses Scripture to lay an unshakable foundation for building an eternal parenting philosophy. If your head is spinning in self-doubt, take a step back and let this valuable resource renew your perspective.""
--Sara Wallace, author of The Gospel-Centered Mom

""Big Picture Parents is a welcome addition to the pantheon of parenting wisdom. Rather than taking us down the 'practical' burrow, Harriet Connor lifts our eyes to the big picture of parenting: what God's purposes are for people, parents, and families, and how that picture ought to shape our parenting convictions and practices. I am an unashamedly 'big picture' person and this book wa

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781532602535
Publisher: Wipf & Stock Publishers
Publication date: 01/20/2017
Pages: 170
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.34(d)

About the Author

Harriet Connor juggles three roles: she is a wife, mother of three, and Bible teacher. She holds degrees in International Studies (Languages) and Theology.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix

Introduction: Why I Wrote This Book 1

Part 1 Our Big Purpose

1 The Purpose of Life: Seeking More Than Happiness 13

2 The Purpose of Parenthood: Aiming for More Than Bedtime 23

Part 2 Our Big Problem

3 The Limits of Being Human: Our Guilt and Fear 35

4 Parents in Need of a Parent: Finding Forgiveness and Comfort 47

Part 3 Our Big Values

5 Christian Values: Remembering What Is Important 65

6 Passing On Our Values: Practicing What We Preach 81

Part 4 Our Big Family

7 Our Ideal Family Structure: Parents United and In Charge 101

8 God's Big Family: Belonging to a Wider Community 118

Conclusion: Becoming Big Picture Parents 135

Recommended Reading 143

Appendix: Questions for Group Study 147

Bibliography 157

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