On this book’s Amazon page, mixed in with the measured, thoughtful reviews, are several reviews that basically just say, “This book is all about beating your kids! People who support spanking should be ashamed of themselves!”
Knowing what I know about reviews of things on the internet and the people who take the trouble to write them, it was these reviews that made me think that this was probably my kind of book.
And it is. Shepherding a Child’s Heart is full of stuff that parents need to hear, but it’s essentially just a book-length reiteration of stuff that most Christians know already: a) people (including children) behave the way do because of the condition of their hearts, b) in order to be good people, people (including children) need an environment that prompts, guides, and encourages them toward God, the source of all good things, and c) sometimes even the best of us need a kick in the pants.
Because of those outraged reviews, I went in kind of expecting a treatise on spanking — the whens and whys and wherefores, along with techniques (“Make sure to snap your wrist at the apex of the swing. Here are some drills you can do with a tennis ball…”). But the author discusses spanking on maybe 5 total pages of a 215 page book.
Instead, the book is exactly what the title says it is. It gives Bible-based, practical advice for guiding your child toward godliness at every stage of his development. Recommended for new, and not-so-new, parents.