At the very core of our society’s existence is the family. I am convinced that when the familial unit breaks down, the rest of society breaks down. Recognizing that importance, I look forward to help and guidance from others. The issue for me is finding help that is biblically-directed and biblically-grounded. As yet another tool in the chest, Jay Payleitner, through Bethany House Publishers released Quick Tips for Busy Families about two weeks ago.
As a father of five, Payleitner has years of experience that lend its support to the crafting of the book. At 204 pages the book looks more daunting than it really is. In reality, the book consists of 144 different strategies for families to develop their relationships with one another. Some of those strategies consist of a few words, while others may be described in a few paragraphs, so it really is not as long as it seems. Some of these strategies are quite specific, as in perform in a talent show with your child, while other suggestions, like consider your driveway as more than a driveway (use it as a playground area for a day, or to setup the barbecue, etc.) are very broad and encourage you to think outside the norms. Furthermore, the author mixes his suggestions with some that cultivate family relationships, others that are geared towards simply having fun together, and another grouping of suggestions that are just very practical and sensible.
Frankly, I was expecting the book to be different. I thought it would be a book that helped to develop some broad themes and concepts that I could then apply to various life situations. Unfortunately, many of the suggestions were specific in nature and thus required special circumstances in order to implement. Therefore, at least in my case, I end up disregarding many of the suggestions he has given. A further disappointment was in the use of Scripture. This is not a book about Biblical principles or expounding on passages of Scripture. Instead it’s about using resources we have to develop your family. So it’s not surprising that Scripture is used very sparingly and that’s OK. However, it’s unfortunate that generally speaking, when the author does use Scripture it’s used out of context and misapplied.
The author clearly has an appreciation for children and for family and that comes out in his presentation of the material. This is to be applauded in a society that has dehumanized people, especially children. If there is an overall appreciation that can be had from the book, it’s that the author wants to see families grow closer together and he is seeking to give some tips for families to do just that.
The end result for me is that the book is not necessary. I definitely came away from the book learning some tips and strategies. In that regard I will not deny the value. However, it seems that most of these tips and tricks were basic in nature and with a little bit of prompting or a few minutes conducting an internet search, I suspect most could come up with many of these tips on their own without spending the money for the book. In that regard the book will not make it onto my recommended list.
To purchase a copy of the book Quick Tips for Busy Families click here.
Disclaimer: I received this book free of charge from the publisher for the purposes of review. However that did not impact the review which is a result of my own reading of the book.