The best books for gentle Christian parenting

Who am I?

Before becoming a mom, my career was as an actress in Hollywood. Once I took on the role of Mother, however, I stepped off of the stage and onto the page. Telling stories about my weary-making days raising children allowed me to encourage other moms to persevere in doing right even when their own kids do wrong. I wrote Triggers with Amber Lia in 2016 and it has been a best-selling parenting resource year after year.


I wrote...

Triggers: Exchanging Parents' Angry Reactions for Gentle Biblical Responses

By Amber Lia, Wendy Speake,

Book cover of Triggers: Exchanging Parents' Angry Reactions for Gentle Biblical Responses

What is my book about?

Do you believe your struggle with anger stems from the wrong behavior you see displayed in your children? The knee-jerk reactions and blow-ups you’re facing are often a result of a bigger set of “triggers.” Some of these are external, like a child’s disobedience, backtalk, or selective hearing, while others are internal, like an overflowing schedule, sleep deprivation, or perhaps your own painful experiences from childhood.

Triggers examines common parenting issues that cause us to explode inappropriately at our children. Moving beyond simple parenting tips on how to change your child’s behavior, we offer biblical insight and practical tools to equip and encourage you on the journey away from anger-filled reactions toward gentle, biblical responses.

The books I picked & why

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The Mission of Motherhood: Touching Your Child's Heart of Eternity

By Sally Clarkson,

Book cover of The Mission of Motherhood: Touching Your Child's Heart of Eternity

Why this book?

No calling is greater, nobler, or more fulfilling than that motherhood. Every day, as we nurture our children, mothers influence eternal destiny as no one else can. Tragically, today’s culture minimizes the vital importance of a mother’s role. In The Mission of Motherhood, Sally Clarkson helps you rediscover the joy and fulfillment to be found in the strategic role to which God in all his wisdom has called you, for a purpose far greater than you can ever imagine.


Peaceful Parent, Happy Kids: How to Stop Yelling and Start Connecting

By Dr. Laura Markham,

Book cover of Peaceful Parent, Happy Kids: How to Stop Yelling and Start Connecting

Why this book?

Based on the latest research on brain development and extensive clinical experience with parents, Dr. Laura Markham’s approach is as simple as it is effective. Her message: Fostering an emotional connection with your child creates real and lasting change. When you have that vital connection, you don’t need to threaten, nag, plead, bribe—or even punish. This remarkable guide will help parents better understand their own emotions—and get them in check—so they can parent with healthy limits, empathy, and clear communication to raise a self-disciplined child. If you’re tired of power struggles, tantrums, and searching for the right “consequence,” look no further. You’re about to discover the practical tools you need to transform your parenting in a positive, proven way.


Praying the Scriptures for Your Children

By Jodie Berndt,

Book cover of Praying the Scriptures for Your Children

Why this book?

Instead of fighting with your kids, try fighting for them… on your knees. There is no need we will face in parenting — or that our kids will confront in their lives — that God has not already thought of, and provided for, in His Word. And there can be no greater privilege than partnering with him, through our prayers, to accomplish his best purposes in the lives of the people we love. But where to begin?

In Praying the Scriptures for Your Children, you will discover how using the Bible to shape your desires and requests opens the door to God's provision — and frees us from things like worry and fear in our parenting! Each chapter teaches you how and what to pray for your child(ren) in the following areas: faith, character, safety, relationships, and the future.


The 5 Love Languages of Children: The Secret to Loving Children Effectively

By Gary Chapman, Ross Campbell,

Book cover of The 5 Love Languages of Children: The Secret to Loving Children Effectively

Why this book?

You know you love your child. But how can you make sure your child knows it? The #1 New York Times bestselling The 5 Love Languages has helped millions of couples learn the secret to building a love that lasts. Now discover how to speak your child’s love language in a way that he or she understands. Dr. Gary Chapman and Dr. Ross Campbell help you:

Discover your child’s love language
Assist your child in successful learning
Use the love languages to correct and discipline more effectively
Build a foundation of unconditional love for your child
Plus: Find dozens of tips for practical ways to speak your child’s love language.

Discover your child's primary language—then speak it—and you will be well on your way to a stronger relationship with your flourishing child.


No More Perfect Kids: Love Your Kids for Who They Are

By Jill Savage, Kathy Koch,

Book cover of No More Perfect Kids: Love Your Kids for Who They Are

Why this book?

Mom and dad, your kids are created in God's image, not your own. Jill Savage and Kathy Koch will guide you in truly appreciating your kids. They will teach you how to study and become an expert on your children, because you cannot fully embrace them until you truly know them. In No More Perfect Kids, Jill Savage and Kathy Koch equip us with the tools and perspective to:

Identify and remove the Perfection Infection from our parenting
Release our children from unrealistic expectations
Answer the questions our kids are silently asking in a way that gives them the courage and freedom to be themselves
Meet the needs of our children, including those with special needs

Written in a passionate, candid, and personal tone, the authors will instill within you hope and contentment. You'll be inspired to apply the practical, realistic, and relevant ideas and tactics Jill and Kathy share.


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in parenting, Christianity, and motherhood?

5,215 authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about parenting, Christianity, and motherhood.

Parenting Explore 109 books about parenting
Christianity Explore 284 books about Christianity
Motherhood Explore 15 books about motherhood

And, 3 books we think you will enjoy!

We think you will like How to Really Love Your Child, Everyday Blessings: The Inner Work of Mindful Parenting, and Free-Range Kids, How to Raise Safe, Self-Reliant Children (Without Going Nuts with Worry) if you like this list.