"It would be difficult to imagine a book that does a better job of weaving together the very best science on human development over the life course with a reliable Christian theology of the Trinity. This deep integrative writing at the interface of lifespan psychology and theology is extraordinary. Throughout, the book has a wonderful practical emphasis that makes it a remarkable resource for pastoral counseling and for the Christian psychologist. The authors deserve immense credit for creating an integrative vision that will be of great use to the competent psychologist who is also the committed Christian."
"Combining years of experience, breadth of scholarship and theological insight, the authors present a coherent and cohesive new paradigm for understanding the process of human development as simultaneously including social, spiritual and psychological reciprocity of personal being. Drawing upon the relevant theories of human development as well as of current theological reflection on the nature of human personhood as a dynamic 'imaging' of a trinitarian Creator God, this book sets a new base line for the next generation of students and scholars who wish to study, practice and write as Christians who are also caregivers. This book ought to be required reading for those preparing to be Christian-oriented counselors and therapists and must reading for those who already are."
This interdisciplinary attempt to understand the unfolding mystery of human development is worth careful study.
This book is an excellent resource for anyone interested in human development from a Christian perspective. . . . This book has much to offer and I recommend this book as supplemental reading for the graduate courses I teach.
"For the student, layperson, or professional, this book reframes human development and serves as a tool for both instruction and transformation in strengthening one's soul, increasing self-clarity, and bolstering one's sense of personal worth, while motivating a passion for the meaning of life in relationship. The authors' expertise in the social sciences, anthropology, theology, and family studies provides a strong platform for this extraordinary and long overdue integration of lifespan psychology and theology."
"Every human life originates in a relationship with another person, and humans thrive when their lives involve mutually beneficial, positive relationships with family, friends and community members. The Reciprocating Self creatively integrates developmental science and the wisdom of Christian theology to provide innovative and singularly significant insights about the nature and importance of human relationships in creating human lives marked by meaning, love and fulfillment. Professors Balswick, King and Reimer have written a book that exemplifies the powerful contributions that can be made to understanding and enhancing human development through bridging the best of social and behavioral science and theological verities in a manner that both informs and inspires."
"All empirical and theoretical accounts of human development raise a basic normative question: What counts as maturity or developmental advance? Much contemporary social science tries to sidestep the question; this book does not. It is unique in spelling out the implications of a Christian conception of full human development for the process and nature of development at each stage in the lifespan. Even those who don't share these authors' religious convictions can benefit from seeing what it takes to stake out a particular developmental teleology and see it through. And for those who are seeking a specifically Christian perspective on development, this is a must-read!"
"In the Confucian Analects, when asked, 'Is there one word which may serve as a rule of practice for all one's life?', the Master replies, 'Is not reciprocity such a word?' In The Reciprocating Self, Jack Balswick, Pamela Ebstyne King and Kevin Reimer have given us a magisterial account of reciprocity in human development. The book reflects the best current thinking in theology and developmental science, a rare and powerful combination. This book should be read by anyone interested in the most promising directions in the study of human development."
"The Reciprocating Self by Balswick, King, and Reimer easily gets my vote as the best book integrating human development and theology. I have been teaching human development for nearly twenty years, and it's rare to find a volume on the lifespan that synthesizes multiple theoretical frameworks and a healthy consideration of diversity and social contexts. Moreover, the motif of the reciprocating self serves to illuminate crucial dimensions of moral, spiritual, and relational development. They have grounded this work in sound research while also offering ample practical applications. This second edition offers integrative engagement with the latest developments in psychology and neuroscience and will inform much of my own teaching and research in the years ahead."
"I was a big fan of The Reciprocating Self. It is a rare book that delivers a scientific vision of human development through the logic of the spirit, working hard to show the reader how the depth of the human developmental experience is spiritual. So you can imagine this fanboy's glee with the release of this updated second edition! If you missed it the first time, you're in for a treat. This book will broaden your vision and deepen your understanding. I think it is a must for every pastor, youth worker, and children's minister. And if you read the first editionsay, in a seminary classnow is the time to reread it. This updated version promises you and your ministry new insights."