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The Shaping of a Christian Family: How My Parents Nurtured My Faith Paperback – October 1, 2005

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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Elisabeth Elliot on . . .

Trust
"The establishment of a child's trust in God begins with the trust in the word of his parents."

Discipline
"It is important to choose the right time, the right place, and the right tone when correction is needed."

Courtesy
"Courtesy is plain old-fashioned thoughtfulness. Do for him or her what you would want done for you."

Teaching by Example
"The example of parents, for good or ill, is an influence far more profound than can be measured."


Elisabeth Elliot, one of the most loved and respected Christian communicators of our day, reveals cherished memories and valuable insights she has gathered from her experiences growing up in a Christian home. Through the stories of her parents, grandparents, and siblings, Elliot extols the importance of obedience, prayer, and forgiveness, among other lessons she learned as a child.

Complete with eight pages of treasured Elliot family photos, The Shaping of a Christian Family is an inspiring book for new parents, experienced parents, and all who have come to trust Elliot's compassionate wisdom.


Former missionary Elisabeth Elliot is the author of more than twenty books, including Passion and Purity, The Journals of Jim Elliot, and These Strange Ashes. She and her husband, Lars Gren, live in Magnolia, Massachusetts.

About the Author

Elisabeth Elliot (1926-2015) was one of the most perceptive and popular Christian writers of the last century. The author of more than twenty books, including Passion and Purity, The Journals of Jim Elliot, and These Strange Ashes, Elliot offered guidance and encouragement to millions of readers worldwide.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 264 pages
  • Publisher: Revell (October 1, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0800731026
  • ISBN-13: 978-0800731021
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.6 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #208,694 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful By E. Heredia on January 7, 2006
Format: Paperback
This book is full of some important jewels, but reaches them in a different way than I expected. It is written as a memoir by Elisabeth, including many portions of memoir by her mother as well. It is an interesting addition to the autobiographical history of many of her other works. Along the way are many reflections of the way her faith and family environment shaped her spiritual growth and the decisions she made. It is not a textbook on how to arrange one's family, nor a text on raising children. Although when I read this book the first time, this was the angle I was looking for, I'm grateful now that it was not directive, but rather illustrative of how one family who was fully devoted to Christ worked. I'm frustrated by the current Christian "literature" that implies there is a very narrow cultural way to have a "Christian family." The only narrow part should be the continuous focus on Christ! This book articulates that challenge well.
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Classic Firm Lover on May 24, 2007
Format: Paperback
Even many committed Christians seem to sometimes struggle with Elisabeth Elliot, whose writings, though chock full of much truth and wisdom, often come across as rather harsh and dogmatic.

This book, however, is a refreshing look at the family in which Elliot herself was raised. It is written largely as a memoir of the simple, day-to-day life of the Howard family (Elliot's maiden name.) The author draws heavily from her mother's recorded memories, which in the beginning, seem a little disjointed. I found myself skimming the early chapters a fair bit, but the book is worth a little perseverence.

As the story of Mr. and Mrs. Howard's marriage and early family life unfolds, it is rich with precious gems of wisdom. I was touched by so many of the little vignettes of ordinary life depicted, and inspired to implement many small changes in my own family life.

All the while, Elliot is careful to portray her family as very 'real,' and emphasizes that her story is only one family's story and not some legalistic grid to follow. 'The Shaping of a Christian Family' is a beautiful tribute to her parents, whose daily commitment to faith, family and discipline is a true picture of the delayed gratification of parenting. Many families, including my own, can benefit from the Howard's example.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Joshua Lake on April 23, 2011
Format: Paperback
"No amount of talking penetrates as deeply as example," writes Elisabeth Elliot, and the pages of this book are permeated with that philosophy. Elliot frequently reminds the reader that this is simply a memoir of how one family raised honest, disciplined, godly children -- it is not to be taken as a step-by-step how-to guide.

The narrative begins very slowly as Elliot introduces you to her parents, beginning with their births. For those who pick up this book expecting to hear about Elliot's life, there may be some surprise at having to read so much biographical data on other persons. But those pages exist to introduce you to the parents whom Elliot uses as examples throughout the rest of the book.

Through the lens of her family's experience, Elliot illustrates a variety of principles for shaping a Christian home. As she says of her father, "[His] life as we witnessed it was more eloquent than anything he ever said," and Elliot uses him as a picture of godly fatherhood. Daily life, honesty, motherhood, and discipline are all similarly taught through a narrative memoir of Elliot's childhood.

Buy this expecting a ten-step approach to shaping a Christian home, and you will be disappointed. Know that you are purchasing a book meant to teach by example from one woman's life, and you will find a treasure. In Elliot's words, "The greatest need of families is holy parents;" read this book to find encouragement and an illustration of godly parenthood.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By KristinC on May 9, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I finished this book yesterday and LOVED it. I can say that I probably highlighted half of the book. I came away feeling challenged to raise a better family--not for the sake of competing with anyone else, but because I LOVE my boys and want them to love the Lord and to be enabled to have a great future thanks to a great foundation that gives them true confidence in Christ.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Emily L. Hilleke on January 16, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
At first, this book reads like a simple memoir, rememberances of E.E.'s grandparents and parents. However, further in, the reader sees how the intimate workings of her family fostered her faith and led her to Christ.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Joy on January 5, 2010
Format: Paperback
A wonderful book about a woman's memories of growing up in a godly, stable, loving Christian home. Worthy of all parent's time. Inspirational and practical. Buying this for several friends and family.
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