Age of Opportunity by Paul David Tripp

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This is the best book I have ever read on the subject of raising teenagers in a biblical manner. Happily absent from this volume is the usual homage to psychobabble and Dear Abby self-help. Instead the proposition of the book is, “What controls my heart will control my life” (p. 30), therefore, the Christian parent’s task is to raise children with a heart for God.

The principles found in Age of Opportunity are drawn from Scripture. In addition, Tripp suggests many practical ways to apply these principles. Refreshingly, Tripp admits some failure, both of his and his teens. But if there is a negative in the book it would be that the subject of rebellious teens is never addressed. What happens if the parent does all of these things and yet junior turns from God and home anyway. In Tripp’s world children all seem to respond rather quickly to loving correction—unfortunately not all teens will do this. What then?

One other issue that could use some discussion is the time factor. Tripp apparently maintains family devotions with His wife and four teens. In addition he has a short chat with each child before bedtime. I imagine that the average Christian parent would be interested in how he pulls this off. With six people going six different directions, when is time found to maintain these encounters. A little more information would be helpful.

But these criticisms are of minor nature when stacked up against the wealth of help found in Age of Opportunity.

This book contains a study guide, and a video accompanied by worksheets is available for group study at www.ccef.org.

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