Subscribe now

Teenagers: Biblical Wisdom for Parents

By Ann Benton
July 2009 | Review by Elinor Magowan


With honesty and wit, Ann shows how Proverbs can speak directly into real life, however messy, today.

  • Publisher: InterVarsity Press
  • ISBN: 978-1844743544
  • Pages: 192
  • Price: £8.99
Buy this book »

Book Review

As the mother of two daughters, one of whom has just turned 13, I wanted to read this book as soon as I saw it. Having benefited from Ann Benton’s helpful book Aren’t they lovely when they’re asleep? I wasn’t disappointed.

This book is straightforward and easy to read. Ann Benton gives practical realistic advice  primarily from the book of Proverbs — and illustrates principles from her own parenting experiences and those of others. The goal is to enable children to pass through their teenage years and become adults who are aware of their sinfulness and who trust, fear, and love the Lord.

Each of the eight chapters begins with a real life scenario which sets the scene for the chapter subject. Subheadings make the structure clear and biblical passages are written out in full. Helpful discussion questions at the end of each chapter enable further reflection.

Ann Benton warns parents not to act out of fear or guilt. Fear breeds anxiety, over-control, and anger, while guilt (deserved or undeserved) leads to regret, surrender, and excess zeal. Instead, we are encouraged to be parents who trust the Lord; are prayerful in all circumstances; are full of hope; and persevere.

The book is neither judgemental nor insensitive to parents who are hurting and grieving. It is written with sensitivity and compassion for those who find themselves in ‘nightmare situations’. It is also written with understanding and insight of the feelings and reactions of teenagers.

This book inspires biblical parenting of teenagers and shows how rewarding and satisfying this relationship can be, through both its heartaches and joys. It should be read not only by parents, but also grandparents, youth leaders, pastors, and those in the church who have contact with, and concern for, teenagers today.

Book Reviews

Read our latest book reviews

Star RatingStar RatingStar RatingStar RatingStar Rating
Why Should I Trust the Bible?

We should trust the Bible, says Timothy Paul Jones, because it is ‘grounded in the words of a man who died and rose again’ (p.111). Jones’s basic presupposition is this: ‘If we live in a world where it is possible…

See all book reviews
Star RatingStar RatingStar RatingStar RatingStar Rating
Who Am I? Human Identity and the Gospel in a Confusing World
Thomas Fretwell

In today’s secular society, religion is often regarded as without rational or scientific basis, and therefore irrelevant to life in the modern world and all areas of public engagement. If that is our social context, then it is no wonder…

Star RatingStar RatingStar RatingStar RatingStar Rating
The Pastor’s Life: Practical Wisdom from the Puritans
Matthew D Haste & Shane W Parker

This book highlights ‘some of the many lessons that today’s pastors can learn from the Puritans’ (p.151). As such it is aimed at pastors, but the lessons are really for anyone who is a Christian leader. The opening chapter provides…

Star RatingStar RatingStar RatingStar RatingStar Rating
5 Minutes in Church History: An Introduction to the Stories of God’s Faithfulness in the History of the Church
Stephen J Nichols

What a breath of fresh air this book is! Stephen Nichols has given us 40 vignettes from church history that are brief enough to be digested over a bowl of cereal. The book doesn’t aim to be a beginner’s guide…