About the Authors
R. Kent Hughes (DMin, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School) is senior pastor emeritus of College Church in Wheaton, Illinois, and a visiting professor of practical theology at Westminster Theological Seminary in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Hughes is also a founder of the Charles Simeon Trust, which conducts expository preaching conferences throughout North America and worldwide. He and his wife, Barbara, have four children and an ever-increasing number of grandchildren.
Barbara Hughes has supported her husband Kent’s pastoral ministry for over 40 years while also raising four children. She is the author of Disciplines of a Godly Woman and is a popular teacher of women’s groups. Together with Kent, she has also authored Disciplines of a Godly Family (formerly known as Common-Sense Parenting) and Liberating Ministry from the Success Syndrome. Barbara and Kent live on the West Coast, have an ever-increasing number of grandchildren, and are still actively involved in ministry.
Disciplines of a Godly Family covers such topics as establishing a solid family heritage, promoting affection between family members, encouraging godliness in children, using appropriate discipline, and helping children cultivate enriching lifelong habits. The Hugheses also offer tips for fun and affordable family vacations, creating family traditions, and starting a prayer notebook. They even give us a suggested list of books and videos that should be in every family's library. For those struggling to parent their own children or to equip other parents for this task, a more practical, honest, and common-sense guide will be hard to find.
This book is a re-release/update of the Hughes's book "Common Sense Parenting," which is out of print. I've bought quite a few used copies of that one, but I keep giving it away because it's so good. My (current) copy is heavily underlined and highlighted. That's why I was so happy to see "Disciplines of a Godly Family." The Hughes share biblical principles of family, using their own experiences with their four children as examples. The book takes parenting seriously but also has a lighthearted, humorous approach. It gives solid spiritual advice and also wonderful practical advice--all the while backing it up with the Bible. It also includes family-friendly book and movie lists and even recipes. It would make a wonderful baby shower or baby baptism gift.
I personally love it because, while acknowledging the foibles of their children (and themselves) and the fact that their family life was not perfect, it stays away from a lot of the sarcasm and negative humour you find in many parenting books. The Hughes's love for each other, their children, and God is evident here. As they say, their only regret is that they didn't have more children. I highly recommend this book!