A new book in the Grandparenting Matters series was released by Bethany House – Grandparenting: Strengthening Your Family and Passing on Your Faith by Dr. Josh Mulvihill. In reviewing the book, I found much useful and practical advice for grandparents who wish to have a Christian relationship with their grandchildren using the Bible and Jesus as their guides. The book's introduction provides a clear and detailed explanation for its purpose. I found Grandparenting: Strengthening Your Family and Passing on Your Faith to be very well organized – one could seek just the specific information they are interested in – or read the work cover to cover.
Grandparenting: Strengthening Your Family and Passing on Your Faith is broken down into four parts:
- Cultural Messages
- God's Design
- Discipleship Practices
- Strengthening Relationships
There are also three appendices and notes, if you wish to research the matters discussed further on your own.
Each chapter is subdivided to make it even easier to navigate the topic. For example, in Chapter 7: God's Vision for Your Family from Psalm 78 – How to Be an Intentional Grandparent, Mulvihill helps the reader examine how to apply Psalm 78 to their own life. He hopes that "Psalm 78 does one of two things: provides confidence and affirms that you are headed in the right direction, or provides clarity and encourages you to adjust your ways" (93). Focusing on God – bringing the work and teachings of God to one's grandchildren is key to an intentional grandparent. In addition to the examination of Psalm 78, Mulvihill gives an example of one grandmother and offers questions ("Grand Chat") for the reader to use to further what they have learned.
What I Like
I found Grandparenting: Strengthening Your Family and Passing on Your Faith an easy and enjoyable read. Even though I am not a grandparent, I found lots of great advice that I can apply to my own life as a parent. There are very simple steps described that any family can implement – no matter if the grandparents are involved or not. For example, having intentional meals where families use meal time to connect. And for grandparents, the advice of serving child-friendly food and accommodating food preferences, special diets, and food sensitivities are great reminders.
Grandparenting: Strengthening Your Family and Passing on Your Faith is full of scriptural references – asking the reader to seek out their Bible to help them become grandparents who will "pass on a rich heritage of faith in Christ and make a difference" in the lives of their grandchildren.
I recommend Grandparenting: Strengthening Your Family and Passing on Your Faith to Christian families seeking assistance in learning how to focus on Christ and build relationships with children and grandchildren. It would fit well on the bookshelves of homes or churches as a valuable resource.