Hints on Child Training
I just remarked to my father-in-law that the irony of parenting books is that my children keep me too busy to read them. So, I'll probably end up finishing them after they are grown and find out all I did wrong. Seriously, though, I do try to read and glean from the wisdom of those who've gone before. One book I started a while ago and hope to finish in the near future is Hints on Child Training by H. Clay Trumbull. Trumbull was Elisabeth Elliot's grandfather. When I started this book I expected a harsh, strict theme since it was written in the 1800s. That couldn't be farther from the truth. It is one of the most gentle and wise guides I've seen. Here is a quote from chapter five: Will Training, Rather than Will-Breaking.
As God, our wise and loving Father in heaven, deals with us His children, so we, as earthly fathers, should deal with our children. We should guard sacredly their privilege of personal choice; and while using every proper means to induce them to choose aright, we should never, never, never force their choice, even into the direction of our intelligent preference for them. The final responsibility of a choice and of its consequences rests with the child, and not with the parent.