Write It On Their Hearts

Practical Help for Discipling Your Kids

from 8 reviews

Help and advice for Christian parents on how to be intentional with their time to lead their children to Jesus.

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Description

Family life is often very busy! There are so many things competing for time and attention. Kids are also influenced by many different things. How can we make sure that we are making the most of our time with our children to lead them spiritually? And what is the best approach? 

This practical guide gives parents a systematic approach to discipleship that goes beyond rote memorization. Author Chris Swain applies to the family context the principles of discipleship that Jesus teaches in Scripture to help you make the most of the time you have with your kids, to both lead them to Jesus and to encourage them to be like Jesus.

“Discipleship happens when we spend intentional time with our children. It is in these moments that God writes his word on their hearts. He does the writing, but we help create the atmosphere for this to take place.” (From the introduction to Write It On Their Hearts.)

Write It On Their Hearts features: 
• a model of discipleship developed by Replicate Ministries that is based on Jesus’ encounters with his disciples 
• a discipleship plan that you can tailor to each child 
• practical help and advice for Christian parents on how to disciple their kids

Author Chris Swain served most recently at Long Hollow Church in Hendersonville, Tennessee, as Disciple-Making Pastor and CEO of Replicate Ministries, training the local church to make disciples. Chris served in full-time ministry for over two decades after proudly serving in the United States Marine Corps. Chris passed away in 2021, but the words he leaves here reflect his devotion to his family and to making disciples.

Co-author Melissa Swain spent nearly 23 years as a pastor’s wife and is a mom, homeschool teacher, writer, and editor. Chris and Melissa lived all over the South, serving in various ministries, but she now calls Hendersonville, Tennessee home, along with her two children and the family dogs.

The list of endorsements at the front of this book contains endorsements from Johnny Hunt and Ronnie Floyd, both of whom are subjects of the recent Guideposts report into sexual abuse within the Southern Baptist Convention and the SBC Executive Committee’s response to allegations of abuse. Write It On Their Hearts was printed before that report was published, and we will remove these endorsements when we reprint. In the meantime, we wish to apologize for any concern or distress that is caused by the presence of these endorsements in this book.

Product details

Contents

  • Foreword by Robby Gallaty
  • Introduction: Who Is Discipling Your Children?
  • Chapter 1: A Crockpot, Not a Microwave: Disciple Them Like Jesus
  • Chapter 2: Tea Parties, Jiu Jitsu, and the Most Important Thing: Show Them You Love Them
  • Chapter 4: It’s Time for the Talk: Teach Them to Pray
  • Chapter 5: Somedays Never Come: Connect with Them
  • Chapter 6: The Book Is Better: Teach Them to Read the Bible
  • Chapter 7: Over and Over Again: Hold Them Accountable
  • Chapter 8: The Hardest Work You'll Ever Do: Teach Them to Rest
  • Your Family Discipleship Plan
  • From Our Family to Yours…

Specification

Contributors Chris Swain, Melissa Swain, Robby Gallaty
ISBN 9781784987749
Format Paperback
First published August 2022
Dimensions 5.3" x 8.5" x 0.6"
Case quantity 50
Language English
Pages 160
Publisher The Good Book Company
Endorsements

Kristen Wetherell

Author, Humble Moms and Hope When It Hurts

In Write It on Their Hearts, Chris and Melissa help parents like me (a mom who feels like I have no idea what I’m doing) to navigate a tough and weighty calling. They cut through the fog of nebulous ‘I shoulds’ and stick to Scripture, offering ways for us to engage with our kids over the long haul. What a gift this is for parents like me, who need biblical wisdom and practical ideas.

Jerrad Lopes

Founder, Dad Tired

Write It on Their Hearts isn’t just a great book; it’s a necessary read for every parent. In a world demanding your attention, you’re reminded to chase after what matters most—what matters for eternity. A must-read for every parent who is serious about raising Jesus-loving disciples.

Courtney Reissig

Author, Teach Me to Feel: Worshiping Through the Psalms in Every Season of Life

Every parent wants to disciple his or her kids well. Most of us think we have more time, but what if we don’t? What if today is what matters and tomorrow isn’t promised? Reading Chris Swain’s words on discipling our kids in the faith felt like a commentary on a life well-lived. It would be easy to romanticize his final words on discipleship and see them as unattainable, but Swain didn’t write that way. He wrote as a parent in the trenches, providing accessible and encouraging tools for parents to use with their kids. I only wish we had more from him. His final work is a gift to parents, like me, who desperately want their kids to know that they love them and God loves them.

Customer reviews


16/09/2022

“Incredible parenting book full of practical Biblical wisdom!”

This relatively short (145 pages) book packs a big punch with practical application and conviction. Throughout the entire book, the emphasis is building a relationship with your children based on the gospel and personally modeling Christlike behavior to/for/with them.

While the introduction seemed a bit strong with the message of “vulture culture” (which admittedly I’m a bit sensitive to this topic from conversations I’ve had with other people), there several good points that kept me reading. And I’m so glad that I did because this book was super convicting for me and encouraging as I pursue to disciple my children well.

Each of the 7 chapters is full of Scripture, vulnerable personal stories, and advice. And each chapter ends with a bulleted list of practical ways to apply what you’ve read. There are a few acronyms throughout the book which is a helpful way to remember and apply the principles of the book.

I love and appreciate the author’s vulnerability and passion for Christ. He shares personally from his own life in a relatable way without lacking the emphasis for Jesus. He points to Jesus in His own weaknesses and encourages the reader to rely on Jesus themselves and to point their child(ren) to Jesus. The book contains just a ton of valuable information - Scripture, explanations, personal stories, practical tips…my book is full of markings which is a personal indicator for me that it’s a good book!

Paul David Tripp’s book “Parenting: 14 Gospel Principles That Can Radically Change Your Family” holds top position in my favorite book on parenting. “For the Love of Discipline” by Sara Wallace is a close second. And now, “Write It on Their Hearts” by Chris and Melissa Swain has just secured spot number 3, bumping the rest down a notch.


05/09/2022

“A wonderful book”

Write It On Their Hearts is a wonderful, Christ-centred book specifically aimed at parents, families, people with young children, and those who may not have children of their own, but who have children in their lives and around them. It offers a unique look at the topic and delves into the question of ‘who is discipling your children?’

Children are a beautiful gift from God, and as their parents, guardians, family, friends and people who the children around us look up to, it’s important for us to help, encourage, inspire and share the goodness of God, alongside with a biblical approach to discipleship, teaching and nurturing. After all, they are the next generation, and what we teach the children in our lives, how we act, what we do and how we use the time we spend with them now, can have a powerful life-long impact on their lives.

Chris, together with his wife Melissa, have written this beautiful book, sharing their tips, advice and knowledge, underpinned by a biblical approach. I have found this book to be incredibly engaging, fascinating, educational and inspiring. It’s a book I highly recommend reading. Although I do not have children of my own, this book is still an amazing read. There are still many children who I know of, and I can put into practice what I have read, to help other children, to help parents and to gain a greater knowledge of discipling children.


01/09/2022

“Great Resource for Parenting as a Christian”

Written for Christian parents to get excited and equipped to show their children Jesus each day, this is a great blend of theology and practical tips. The majority of books I've read on the subject before have done one or the other well, but rarely have they done both! The theology is blended throughout the chapters and is both easy to read and full of detail.

A particular highlight for me is the plan that Chris and Melissa give to try different approaches to learning about God and living out faith. For example, they share their template for "HEAR" journals, working through a passage to establish not only what the passage says but also how it applies to our lives today. They set out a schedule for family devotional times together in order to strike a balance between getting used to the different activities and having enough variety to keep them interested.

If you're interested in thinking through your parenting as a Christian, whether you're about to have a baby or have teenagers, this will give you some practical tips to make a real difference.


16/08/2022

“True Connection, Challenges and Encouragement”

What is your plan as a parent for the spiritual formation of your children? In Write It On Their Hearts, Chris and Melissa Swain give practical help for discipling your kids.

The Great Commission and Your Children

In 7 chapters and less than 150 pages, this book is a guide to fulfill the Great Commission in your children. Using the helpful word picture of discipleship as a crockpot, not a microwave, the Swains share their wisdom on six key elements that Jesus modeled in his discipleship: love, prayer, connection Scripture, accountability, and rest.

What the Swains do exceedingly well is making their points memorable. By using the acronym TIME, we see that we can best love our children by giving them Transparency, Intimacy, Meaningfulness, and Empathy. I saw how I need to try to see things from their perspective, whether they are right or wrong, and still understand how they see the world.

True Connection, Challenges and Encouragement

What I was most fascinated by is how we, as parents, can connect with a moment while not necessarily connecting with our child. We might feel connected because of a shared event, but true connection comes with CARE: Compassion, Authenticity, Relevance, and Engagement. Scheduling time together for connection, not necessarily for memorable moments, is something I want to do better.

The Swains aim high with their vision for discipleship, and they give you the tools to help you get there. You will feel challenged as a parent, but also encouraged to give your children your best. With practical tips and a plan in place, you will be equipped to train your children up in the way they should go. Disciple your children and they will not depart from it.

I received a media copy of Write It On Their Hearts and this is my honest review.


15/08/2022

“wonderful resource”

I was so extremely excited to read this book. Every believing parent needs help to disciple their children for many reasons. One being that no matter how much we love the Lord, we are sinful people in need of His strength. Another being the fact that raising God fearing children in this current world is a war that we are unable to fight on our own.

The Swains structure the book with seven, wisdom filled, chapters. I appreciated their creativity in chapter titles:

- A Crockpot, Not a Microwave: Disciple them like Jesus

- Tea Parties, Jiu Jitsu, and the Most Important Thing: Show them you love them

- It's time for the Talk: Teach them to pray

- Somedays Never Come: Connect with them

- The Book is Better: Teach them to read the bible

- Over and Over Again: Hold them Accountable

- The Hardest Work You'll Ever Do: Teach them to rest

Their writing style is fun, engaging, honest, and relatable. They share their experiences with their own children including the failures and the successes. Every parenting journey is unique yet powerful when they trust and follow the Lord.

They gently remind us that we must be intentional with the raising of our children. They provide many practical, unique tips, tricks, ideas, suggestions and methods to implement the Gospel in our child rearing. These were my favorite sections. As parents, we fail in the creative department to personalize the methods we teach our children the Gospel.

Each chapter concludes with a "Write It On Their Hearts" section. This includes bullet points of main items discussed in the chapter along with questions to discover your family's uniqueness and additional scripture to ponder.

As a parent who is always seeking help in raising my children in a godly way, this book is definitely a helpful and encouraging resource.

I received a copy of this book from The Good Book Company in exchange for an honest review.


02/08/2022

“Important resource for parents”

As a Foster carer, I have seen too often when parenting has gone wrong, and the lifelong impact it can have.
So this is an amazing and important resource for all parents, especially those wanting to encourage their children to find their own faith and follow Jesus.
It includes plenty of sound advice as to how to guide and encourage our children, build a relationship with them so that they can become strong in their personal relationship with Jesus.
It is easy to read, very insightful and packed with biblical truths and references as well as some quite radical and counter-cultural tools and plans that will really help to model and instil godly relationships.
At the end of each chapter the "write it on their hearts" section summarises the chapter well, with practical steps to take to implement the teaching within your family. Practical advice on key spiritual aspects like prayer, reading the bible and hearing from God, and great advice on topics like time, discipleship and especially good about resting together, enjoying Sabbath time together.
Parents will find it helpful, challenging, real and not with out-of-reach ambitions… just good solid teaching.
The end of the book also includes some very helpful planning tools, helping you to lay down weekly, monthly or annual plans that will enable your family to build their relationship with God and with each other.


27/07/2022

“Practical Helps for Discipleship”

Here's a very practical parenting book that outlines 6 key aspects of discipling your children and they’ve created an acronym to help us with both our understanding and the application.

Love. We love our children with TIME [Transparency, Intimacy, Meaningfulness and Empathy]

Connection. We build this with CARE [Compassion, Authenticity, Relevance and Engagement]

Accountability. We SPUR them on [Sharpen, Pray, Urge, Restore].

Scripture. We get to know the Word and HEAR [Highlight, Explain, Apply, Respond]

Prayer. Both together and individually we ASK [Ask, Seek, Knock].

Rest. In all the craziness we STOP [Still, Talk, Offer, Peace]

When you stop to consider these categories, I think it’s easy to just assume what love is, or what building connection is, and we may conclude we’re already doing it without considering more deeply what it means. This is why the acronyms are helpful because they break down a big concept into smaller bites we can chew on in our parenting.

For each family, and each child, parenting can look different. But as we purposefully engage with the question, “How am I loving my child?” or, “How am I holding them accountable?” These chapters provide good food for thought and discussion with principles we can apply.

We’re reminded that our purpose as parents is clearly defined in scripture: we are to make disciples. “The Great Commission begins in the home. This is the purpose each and every Christ-following parent must embrace.”

The plan is simple. What’s difficult is the investment.

Isn't that the truth!

For the parents who appreciate routine and action plans, they’ve put together a monthly or yearly printable plan to help guide you in your intentionality.


15/07/2022

“A true Kingdom work”

Write It on Their Hearts is sure to bless families today and in years to come. The book is co-authored by Chris and Melissa Swain. The seven chapters each focus on a specific aspect of discipleship, preceded by a helpful introduction which dissects contemporary culture. Throughout, the authors adapt practical strategies commonly associated with discipleship and apply them to parenthood. Statistics are presented to demonstrate the importance of family discipleship, highlighting the limited time that parents have with their children before they become adults. A key argument is that there is a culture of busyness which restricts critical family time. In counter, the Swains insist that Christian parents ‘must decide that today is the day to say the stuff, do the things, and bury the nebulous “someday” because that day is today!’
This is a genuine Christ-centered work which espouses love and wisdom. The practical points and anecdotes are highly impactful and should bless parents from many walks of life. The writing style is clear, sustained, and free from jargon. To improve the work and expand its footprint, the authors could have included guidance for different family dynamics. For example, what about specific advice for single-parent families, or those with one parent on active service, or an occupation away from home, or a disability? Furthermore, as a nature enthusiast I dispute the authors’ stance on ‘outside activities’, as I believe these certainly fall into the category of our most meaningful family moments! Despite this, conclusively the book is an excellent resource; written by disciples, for discipleship. A true Kingdom work.

I received a free copy of this book from The Good Book Company in exchange for an honest review.

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Write It On Their Hearts | Chris Swain, Melissa Swain, Robby Gallaty | $16.99 $14.44