Thursday, July 26, 2007

Authentic Parenting in a Postmodern Culture

by Mary E. DeMuth
Harvest House, July 1, 2007

Mary guides parents through her ongoing postmodern parenting journey, encouraging readers as they travel the same road, in three parts:
Foundations, What Does Postmodern Parenting Look Like? and Releasing Children, Embracing Culture. She includes group discussion questions and a resource section.
You can purchase your autographed copy directly from Mary at the links below.
Read more about Mary and her books at
her website Relevant Prose. Sign up for her ezine.

Learn about Mary's faith and writing on her blog.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Mary DeMuth


Released by Harvest House, July 1, 2007

One of the highlights of Mount Hermon Christian Writers Conference for me was sharing the dinner table of Mary DeMuth, Christian author of novels Watching the Tree Limbs and Wishing on Dandelions and nonfiction parenting books, Ordinary Mom, Extraordinary God: Encouragement to Refresh Your Heart and Building the Christian Family You Never Had: A Practical Guide for Pioneer Parents.

In person Mary radiates the warmth of Jesus and is as genuine as the title of her latest parenting guide, Authentic Parenting in a Postmodern Culture. Below I quote some of her thoughts regarding this fresh approach to raising children in our culture:

What does postmodern mean? And why should it matter to parents?
Postmodernism is the waiting room between what used to be a modern worldview and what will be. According to several postmodern scholars, we’re in a shift right now, leaving modern ideas behind, but what we are shifting to is not yet fully defined. Postmoderns believe that rationalism and/or more education doesn’t necessarily create a better society. They typically don’t embrace the notion of absolute truth, though they reach for the transcendent. They are skeptical, and often question whether science is something to be embraced or feared. The question for parents is how will we mine the current worldview, even as it shifts? What in it can we embrace as biblical? What is not biblical? What I’ve seen in the church is a fearful adherence to what is familiar. So we cling to modern ideas, even though they may not be biblical and shun postmodern ideas even when they might be biblical. Our children will meet this shifting worldview no matter what our opinion of it is.

You talk about the twin values of engagement and purity. What does that mean?
Many parents subconsciously believe that true parenting means protection at any cost. We received a lot of flak for putting our children in French schools because the atmosphere there wasn’t exactly nurturing. Believe me, the decision was excruciating. But through it all, I realized that Jesus calls us all to be engaged in the culture we live in, yet not to be stained by it. That’s the beauty of engagement and purity. Abraham understood this. After God told him to leave everything and venture to a new place, he obeyed: “From there he went on toward the hills east of Bethel and pitched his tent, with Bethel on the west and Ai on the east. There he built an altar to the LORD and called on the name of the LORD” (Genesis 12:8). Oswald Chambers elaborates: “Bethel is the symbol of communion with God; Ai is the symbol of the world. Abraham pitched his tent between the two.” As parents journeying alongside our children through a postmodern world, this concept of pitching our tent between communion with God and engagement in the world should encourage us.

What bugs you about postmodernism?
I happen to believe in absolute truth, so that’s a problem! But more than that, I worry that all our rambling about it, trying to discern what it is, has caused us to rely more heavily on our own intellectual pursuit of God than our heart. When I get caught up in that, I remind myself of my friend Jeanne’s son Jacob, whose heart after Jesus takes my breath away. Living with a brain injury, Jacob throws off pretense as he worships God, arms vaulted to the sky in unashamed heart worship. That’s the kind of believer I want to be. That’s the kind of heart I want. I love this verse: “But I am afraid that, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, your minds will be led astray from the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ” (2 Corinthians 11:3). For me, for my children, that’s my prayer, that we’d be simply and purely devoted to Jesus no matter what worldview we find ourselves in.

Book Excerpt:
If you'd like to read an excerpt from the book, click here.

Purchase Authentic Parenting

Links to Mary’s website and blog:
Visit Mary's helpful and fun website here.

Meet Mary and read her crazy blog here.

Be sure to check out the other blogs participating on the Authentic Parenting Tour this week. For a complete listing of the blogs participating in the six week tour, visit here.
A Cup of Cold Water
Aspire2 Blog
Be a Barnabas
Christian Work at Home Moms
Dawn Morton Nelson
Deborah Gyapong
Dobsons 411
Eleanor Joyce
Good Word Editing
Preacher’s Daughter
Sky-High View
Spaghetti Pie
the law, books and life
The Master’s Artist
The Surrendered Scribe
Through My Window