If I could, I would give a stack of books to every new and expectant mother I know. Babywise, The Happiest Baby on the Block, and Moms-on-Call helped me survive the colic and fevers and sleep challenges, and I would love to share those resources with other mommies. More importantly though, I would give her five books on motherhood and parenting that have deeply impacted and encouraged me.
However, most moms aren’t like me. They don’t want a big stack of homework when they’ve just been handed a brand-new life. So I refrain from giving them unwanted gifts that will sit on their shelves gathering dust. Instead, I’ve listed my five favorite mothering books here with a quick summary, for anyone who might be interested.
None of the books in this list teach a specific methodology of parenting or particular school of thought. Instead, they encourage holistic attitudes that can transform and elevate any style of parenting.
- Parenting, by Paul David Tripp
Paul Tripp’s book, divided into twelve areas of focus, explains that the only parenting approach in accord with the Bible is one that is fully dependent on and infused with grace. Parents are tasked with showing forth Christ’s Good News to their children, and they can do that only by being Gospel-focused and -filled themselves.
Parenting is full of reminders of our own redemption and how that redemption gives our parenting greater worth and meaning. Tripp’s book is worth reading again and again for anyone caring for precious little ones.
- Missional Motherhood, by Gloria Furman
Gloria Furman’s Missional Motherhood teaches many of the same core ideas that Paul Tripp’s book does, though her book is more specifically geared towards mothers.
However, at first glance, Furman’s book doesn’t seem to be about parenting at all. The first part of the book is focused on the Gospel story and God’s missional agenda. This establishes the context for missional mothering, which Furman discusses in part two.
The focus of this book is on Christ, from beginning to end, as parenting and all of life should be.
- Treasuring Christ When Your Hands are Full, by Gloria Furman
Treasuring Christ is a smaller volume, also by Furman, grounded in many of the same themes and truths as Missional Motherhood. However, instead of laying out an overarching picture of the Gospel and how it applies to parenting, Treasuring Christ gives short, practical reminders of how Christ’s message transforms our everyday parenting moments into opportunities for God’s grace.
As the subtitle states, Treasuring Christ is a collection of “Gospel Meditations for Busy Moms.” These reminders–short, sweet, and to-the-point–make it especially valuable for repeated reference over the little years.
- Risen Motherhood, By Emily Jensen & Laura Wifler
Risen Motherhood, published last year, grew out of the Gospel-based podcast by the same name. Emily Jensen and Laura Wifler have a passion for applying Gospel truth to the everyday tedium and trials of mothering. Their podcast and their book are supremely practical, relatable, and rich in encouragement.
Jensen and Wifler divided the main section of their book into fourteen chapters that each focus on a certain aspect of motherhood, like body image, self-care, and raising children with special needs. They bring each mommy hot-topic to the light of Scripture to find how the Christ’s purpose and power answer each problem.
- 936 Pennies, by Eryn Lynum
The content of 936 Pennies isn’t as Gospel focused than the previous four books, but her message is grounded in Bible truth all the same. It is on that Scriptural foundation that Lynum establishes her belief in the infinite value of our children and the eternal impact of our time with them.
Spending time with our children and investing in their hearts is the core message of 936 Pennies. Lynum reminds parents that they only have nine-hundred and thirty-six weeks with each of their children before they become legal adults who can fly from home. Those weeks are a precious resource, and Lynum urges parents to use them as wisely as we can and gives practical examples of how we can do just that.
Though I’m still discovering a wealth of parenting information and valuable resources, these five books are my current favorites for aligning my parenting with Truth and Love. For anyone who desires to parent with God’s grace but needs help understanding the practical application of that desire, these resources are invaluable.
(Note: I’m not paid for promoting any of these books and all opinions expressed are my own.)