Willis' book is a revelation to this senior citizen raised in an era when spanking was still considered an appropriate way to develop character in children. The stories she shares of her sons actions are amazing. Temper tantrums, misbehaving, arguing, and more. As a past bookstore owner, I cringed at her story of her son's behavior in a Dollar Tree store. Willis herself was disappointed, flabbergasted, and enraged by the “out of control” behavior. (518/2421)
This book is definitely one for young mothers, especially those with rambunctious sons. Willis writes about her own four year battle with anxiety and depression, finally healing with the help of a Christian counselor. After a teacher complained, she took one of her sons to see an occupational therapist specializing in behavior to get professional help in improving his behavior.(1445/2421) Her son learned how to behave in an appropriate way in school situations. (1453/2421) Nobody even heard of those kinds of ways to change behavior when I was young. Parents themselves took on the difficult task of character development and raising responsible adults.
Along with sharing many of her own parenting experiences are lessons from those experiences and from the Bible. Willis helps readers deal with peace stealing issues like the comparison trap, having a martyr syndrome, desiring control, expectations, and more. My favorite aspect of the book was her idea of helping a distraught mother, being a burden lifter rather than a burden builder. I'll keep that in mind the next time I am out shopping.
Reading this book has given me a new sense of compassion for young mothers, especially those of unruly boys. I have a new appreciation of the difficulty of raising active boys when corporeal discipline is no longer considered appropriate. No wonder young moms feel like they are going crazy. Reading this book will help young mothers realize they are not alone in their struggles and will give them some good encouragement for their hectic days.
Food for thought: “Our children are one of the greatest gifts God has given us, but God never intended for us to raise them at the expense of our own peace and relationship with Him.” (980/2421)
You can watch the book trailer here.
My rating: 4/5 stars
Ashley Willis has a BA in Communication from Georgetown College and a middle grade teaching certificate from Eastern Kentucky University. She taught middle school English, Science, History, and Bible before deciding to be at home with her four young sons, Cooper, Connor, Chandler, and Chatham. She hit the jackpot when she married her very best friend and favorite author/pastor/everything in the world, Dave Willis. Together, they work to create marriage-building resources and events throughout the United States and online. Dave was the teaching pastor at Stevens Creek Church, a nondenominational church with the roots of the church coming from the Church of God denomination, for ten years. They often spoke together at church together, and Ashley led women’s Bible studies and often did pastoral counseling with wives and moms. Dave and Ashley also do initial pastoral counseling for couples together. They both recently joined the team at MarriageToday, an international marriage ministry, as content creators and speakers. They live in the Dallas/Fort Worth area in Texas. You can find out more at https://strongermarriages.com/start-here/ . Photo by Ana Marie Photography.
FaithWords, 224 pages.
I received a complimentary egalley of this book from the publisher. My comments are an independent and honest review.
(My star ratings: 5-I loved it, 4-I like it, 3-It's OK, 2-I don't like it, 1-I hate it.)